Nextiva is a leading ‘connected conversations’ platform, helping teams get on the same page to deliver amazing experiences for their customers. Over 100,000 businesses trust Nextiva. Founded in 2008, and headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona, Nextiva is the largest privately-held communications company in North America.
Tomas Gorny, CEO and Co-Founder, Nextiva, tells us more. Excerpts from an interview:
DQ: How is Nextiva enabling businesses to solve communication challenges in India?
Tomas Gorny: We are addressing a fundamental challenge for businesses, driven by the rising expectations of consumers. Over the past several years, we’ve become accustomed to incredibly convenient experiences offered by large companies where products are delivered right to our doorsteps, getting transport right at our fingertips etc. Unfortunately, most businesses struggle to replicate these seamless experiences, resulting in a widening gap, both in terms of research and development investments and business progression.
Data from studies illustrates that a decreasing number of businesses are successfully transitioning to larger scales. The dominance of larger corporations puts pressure on medium to larger-sized enterprises, making it more challenging for them to expand. While our customer base includes Fortune 500 companies, our primary objective is to level the playing field for all businesses.
We achieve this by democratizing advanced communication and conversational technology, simplifying their integration, and enabling businesses to focus on nurturing relationships instead of grappling with intricate technology setups. Our mission is to eliminate the technological clutter and shatter the glass ceiling that many businesses face due to technical and financial limitations. By making enterprise-level technology accessible and affordable, we empower businesses to thrive in today’s competitive landscape.
DQ: What role do technologies like cloud, Gen AI play in this?
Tomas Gorny: We have long believed that while machines perform better than us in swiftly processing massive amounts of information and making recommendations to assist human agents, humans are better at certain things like empathy and connection development. One of our key objectives is to democratize these technologies so that businesses of all sizes can use them.
Each agent’s daily tasks involve several conversations, making it extremely difficult to continually recollect crucial information. Generative AI intervenes to solve this problem by providing essential insights for each interaction. With GenAI’s help, we can concentrate on a discussion’s most important elements and suggest the best courses of action for specific circumstances.
Human skills span a broad, varied, and constantly changing spectrum. 100 customer service workers will display a variety of skills on a team, with some excelling in empathy and others in memory recall, for example. At Nextiva, our main mission is to raise the bar for agent performance, and we work to accomplish this by utilising cutting-edge technology.
DQ: Can you tell us about the engineering innovation that Nextiva will drive out of India?
Tomas Gorny: Earlier this year, we acquired Simplify360, an AI customer experience platform based in India. This collaboration led us to India and offered several advantages to both organizations. For Nextiva, it represented a strategic geographic expansion, as we lacked a presence in Asia and the surrounding Middle East region.
Additionally, it opened up access to a rich talent pool, allowing us to tap into exceptional talent resources that were previously constrained. Since finalizing the partnership, we have already expanded our workforce in India, currently comprising around 100 team members. Looking ahead, we anticipate further growth, with plans to double our presence in the region within the next 12 months.
We intend to bolster our capabilities in artificial intelligence and machine learning, recognizing that there are specific gaps in data analysis that need to be addressed. Additionally, we are committed to enhancing our search functionality, which will entail hiring individuals with expertise in this area. Essentially, we are building a multidisciplinary team that covers various aspects of our project.
DQ: How is Nextiva building a new-age customer experience for businesses in India?
Tomas Gorny: The main goal of Nextiva is to streamline and extract valuable insights from the wealth of customer data, enabling organizations to build deeper and more enduring customer relationships. Since we have a thorough expertise of the area, we have been able to effortlessly integrate with a variety of important technologies, ensuring that the information presented is accessible and user-friendly.
As a result, there is no longer a requirement for technical know-how because our native interfaces and third-party integrations make it easier to retrieve and analyze data. Along with providing clients with the information and skills they need to properly use solutions; we also support businesses with a number of training initiatives.
We also offer case studies of our work with bigger organizations, showing how we helped them streamline, enhance, and eventually reach the level of their clients. Essentially, we offer an ecosystem that supports businesses by educating them about the possibilities of consumer engagement, and the benefits of utilizing AI, all while guaranteeing that financial restrictions do not impede their development.
DQ: What are the future trends that will redefine consumer behavior and next-gen technology that will drive growth?
Tomas Gorny: In recent years, business landscape has undergone significant transformations, and one could argue that events like the Covid-19 pandemic have accelerated these changes. Companies such as Microsoft, Apple, Amazon, and Uber have set new standards for effortless product and service use, shaping consumer perceptions and demands.
We are seeing a growing trend of consumer who have become accustomed to these exceptional experiences and no longer compare companies to their closest competitors but rather to the best experiences they have encountered. This shift in consumer expectations has impacted businesses of all sizes, not just technologically advanced ones.
What we have observed is that flawless, seamless conversations with businesses are now expected. Consumers anticipate communication through their preferred channels, with the ability to switch seamlessly between them, all while expecting companies to know, understand, and remember them.
However, many businesses rely on disjointed tools, making this nearly impossible to achieve. Recognizing this trend, we identified a gap in the market for a solution that consolidates conversations from various channels into a unified interface. This is just the initial step, as we aim to make sense of this data and provide valuable insights to empower business users in building deeper customer relationships.
Secondly, AI is another important trend we foresee despite the prevalent overhyping of this technology. AI, in our view, serves as a valuable tool for addressing the limitations of human capabilities. While humans excel in building relationships, demonstrating empathy, and similar qualities, they often fall short when it comes to processing vast quantities of data rapidly.
This is where machine learning (ML) and natural language processing (NLP) come into play, leveraging historical data and customer information to make predictions regarding customer satisfaction, sentiment, and the likelihood of specific outcomes.
Moreover, AI aids in providing real-time, pertinent information to assist customers promptly. Our philosophy centers on the synergy between people and machines, with each excelling in distinct areas, ultimately creating a combined effect greater than the sum of its parts.