Monday Aug 25, 2014

Oracle Service Cloud (aka RightNow) August 2014 is now Generally Available

We are pleased to announce the availability of the Oracle Service Cloud August 2014 Release.

This latest release provides significant new features and capabilities across the Oracle Service Cloud pillar.  Highlights include:

  • Fully-featured collaboration service
  • Optimize agent utilization in Experience Routing
  • Leverage preloaded data with Virtual Assistant
  • Simplify and improve the design delivery and effectiveness of interviews in Policy Automation
  • Providing ODBC & JDBC client-side driver for data-access in Cloud Service Platform
  • And more…

To find out more, please check out these resources:

Key Elements of the Oracle Service Cloud August 2014 Release

In the August 2014 release of Oracle Service Cloud, we continue our commitment to improving and enhancing the Oracle Service Cloud suite of applications in order to empower great customer experiences. 

The August 2014 release provides significant new features and capabilities across the Oracle Service Cloud pillar.  A new level of service collaboration is being delivered through the Cross-Channel Contact Center.  With this fully-featured collaboration service, agents are now empowered to harness the expertise across your organization directly from their Agent Desktop. You will also benefit from new Web Customer Service enhancements to Experience Routing which optimize agent utilization, and with Virtual Assistant, the ability to leverage preloaded data to personalize and anticipate users’ needs without requiring them to first type a question. Policy Automation delivers a new level of functionality to simplify and improve the design delivery and effectiveness of interviews. On the Cloud Service Platform, we are providing ODBC & JDBC client-side drivers for data-access that deliver a seamless out-of-the-boxexperience for data access.  


Service Collaboration

Harness the expertise across your organization with robust Service Collaboration.  By providing seamless access to the best resources throughout your team, your service agents can work together to more quickly resolve issues and deliver a higher level of service.  In this release, agents can collaborate directly from the incident workspace without leaving the agent desktop and can collaborate anytime and anywhere with mobile collaboration apps.  Service-specific functionality enables frequent collaborators to prioritize their conversation participation based on urgency and business priority.  Agents stay informed with real time capabilities such as activity streams and integrated notification alerts on important posts.  Along with enhancing the productivity and efficiency of your agents, you can harness undocumented knowledge present in your organization and make information more accessible to the whole organization for future inquiries.


Chat - Experience Routing Optimized Assignments

With Experience Routing we streamlined the implementation of skills based routing.  In this release, you will improve the responsiveness to your customers by evenly distributing the workload to optimize your agent utilization when assigning chats. For example, if there are multiple qualified agents available to take a chat, we assign the chat to the agent who is handling the fewest number of simultaneous chat sessions.  The addition of reporting on queue performance by profile gives you a better understanding of how different agents groups perform against skill types. Also, enhanced trend reporting enables you to detect trends in changing skill and staffing requirements.  

Virtual Assistant - Extensions for Dialog Personalization

Virtual Assistant enables your customers to have a conversation that offers personalized and engaging human-like interactions.  The improved integration capabilities in this release enable you to ‘inject’ personal and contextual information from other data sources at the point of initiation in order to influence the content and direction of the dialog flows.  This allows you to start the interaction by anticipating likely user needs, reflecting your understanding of what the user is experiencing, rather than a generic ‘How may I help you?” type of prompt.


Improved Interview Experience

Further improvements to the interview experience for easier and more effective dynamic interviews.  The enhanced layout provides the ability to embed images, organize the design of the layout with a side-by-side view and intuitively show or hide controls.  In this release we have also streamlined the ability to audit interviews. You now have the ability to store and view decision reports in the Agent Desktop or any connected application, and to capture evidence you can simply choose and upload any document.

Greater Modeling Productivity

To improve the modeling of interviews, in this release we introduce collaborative modeling to enable designers to work together on the same project. This prevents any conflicting changes and shows what has changed and why. 

Sample Projects

We have added even more sample projects to help you effectively build a business case, quickly get new interviews started and enhance existing interviews.

Integrate to Any Application

The new Web Service Connector allows you to securely integrate interviews with any application and easily map policies onto the data model of other applications all through a standards-based integration.

To further facilitate deployment efficiency you will find a new and simplified Hub user interface that provides a view of separate histories for project changes and deployments as well as the ability to centrally manage and review data service connectivity.


Managed ODBC & JDDBC

We are pleased to announce the availability of ODBC & JDBC data access capabilities in this release.  The most common cloud integration scenarios start with data access.  ODBC & JDBC are client-side drivers for data-access that deliver a seamless out-of-the-box experience for data access.   These drivers allow common off-the-shelf software to query, extract, and report on data that lives in the Oracle Service Cloud.  3rd party reporting tools, analytics, data integration tools, visualization tools, spreadsheets and more can gain immediate access to your data. These new ODBC & JDBC drivers for Oracle Service Cloud offer greater data access convenience, flexibility, and compatibility.

A complete list of enhancements to Oracle RightNow Service Cloud can be found in the August 2014 Release Notes


If your customer is interested in upgrading, please refer them to these resources:

To stay up to date on new releases, events, and other important news, please be sure to subscribe to News and Announcements on the RightNow Community.

Does Your Customer Engagement Create an Ah Feeling?

Companies that successfully engage customers all have one thing in common. They make it seem easy for the customer to get what they need. No one would argue that brands don’t want to leave customers with this “ah” feeling. Since 94% of customers who have a low-effort service experience will buy from that company again, it makes financial sense for brands.1

Some brands are thinking differently about how they engage their customers to create ah feelings. How do they do it?

Toyota is a great example of using smart assistance technology to understand customer intent and answer questions before customers hit the submit button online. What is unique in this situation is that Toyota captures intent while customers are filling out email forms. Toyota analyzes the data in the form and suggests responses before the customer sends the email. The customer gets the right answer, and the email never makes it to your contact center — which makes you and the customer happy.

Most brands are fully aware of chat as a service channel, but some brands take chat to a whole new level., part of the and Walgreens family of brands, uses live chat to replicate the personal experience that one would find at high-end department store cosmetic counters. Trained beauty advisors, all with esthetician or beauty counter experience, engage in live chat sessions with online shoppers to share immediate advice on the best products for their personal needs. Agents can watch customer activity online and determine the right time to reach out and offer help, just as help would be offered in a brick-and-mortar store. And, agents can co-browse along with the customer helping customers with online check-out. These personal chat discussions also give the opportunity to present products, advertise promotions, and resolve customer issues when they arise. converts approximately 25% of chat sessions into product orders.

Photobox, the European market leader in online photo services, wanted to deliver personal and responsive service to its 24 million members. It ensures customer inquiries on personalized photo products are routed based on agent knowledge so customers get what they need from the company experts. By using a queuing system to ensure that the agent with the most appropriate knowledge handles the query, agent productivity increased while response times to 1,500 customer queries per day decreased. A real-time dashboard prevents agents from being overloaded with queries. This approach has produced financial results with a 15% increase in sales to existing customers and a 45% increase in orders from newly referred customers.

The Modern Marketer’s Guide to Connected Customer Journeys

By Amanda Batista on Thursday, August 14, 2014 in Marketing Efficiency

Organizations are striving to deliver consistent experiences but very few feel they are there yet.

It’s a simple consideration for marketers, really. Not only does industry data continue to support that customers demand personalized experiences when engaging with brands, but if you think about your own consumer driven shopping experiences, you, too, expect that stellar experience at every touch point. And when you don’t get it, that brand has potentially alienated the experience, as well as their shot at engaging with you in more meaningful ways.

Oracle Marketing Cloud partnered with to conduct a survey exploring how marketers are adapting to this new age of the customer and the challenges they face.

Less than half (40%) of marketers in the study were able to track the customer journey across channels. These findings, as well as other data points showcasing marketers’ challenges, are explored in our latest eBook, “The Modern Marketer's Guide to Connected Customer Journeys.”

Read the entire article and order your copy of the full report here

New Training Content at your Fingertips: Oracle Fusion Applications 2014 User Experience Specialist

Exciting news! There is a new Release 8 training available to your partners in the Oracle Fusion Applications 2014 User Experience Specialist guided learning path. Release 8 Overview, Sales Cloud & HCM Cloud's all in there!


Oracle Voice, the Virtual Assistant for Sales Reps

Wish there was a Siri-like virtual assistant for sales reps? The Oracle Voice for Sales Cloud application is now available in the iTunes Store. Selling from your iPhone has never been this fast, friendly & fun! See Oracle Voice for Sales Cloud in action.

New Exam in Beta Testing: Oracle Fusion CRM - Sales 2014 Implementation Essentials

This new exam is designed for individuals who possess a strong foundation and expertise in implementing Oracle Sales Cloud solutions. Request your free exam voucher now!

Whitepaper: The Socially Enabled Enterprise

Sharing the results of our new executive study, which explored the opportunities and challenges global organizations are facing in the transition to becoming socially enabled enterprises. Oracle, Leader Networks, and Social Media Today recently conducted an online survey of over 900 Marketing and IT executives to understand how companies are leveraging social technologies and practices throughout their organizations.

Read Now!

Webcast: Attack of the Customers- The rise of the Empowered Consumer

Watch Paul Gillin, author of “Attack of the Customers: Why Critics Assault Brands Online and How to Avoid Becoming a Victim,” and Oracle Social Cloud Vice President Erika Brookes, talk about the rise of the empowered consumer.

Watch now!

What’s New from the Oracle Marketing Cloud at Oracle OpenWorld 2014?

Marketing—CX Central is your hub for all things Marketing related at OpenWorld in San Francisco, September 28-October 2, 2014. Learn how to personalize the modern marketing journey to improve customer loyalty. We’re hosting more than 60 breakout sessions, half of which will highlight customer success stories from marquee brands including Bizo, Comcast, Dell, Epson, John Deere, Lane Bryant, ReadyTalk and Shutterfly.

Moscone West, Levels 2 and 3

To learn more about how modern marketing works, visit Moscone West, levels 2 and 3, for exciting demos of each of the Oracle Marketing Cloud solutions (BlueKai, Compendium, Eloqua, Push I/O, and Responsys). You also can check out our stations for Vertical Marketing Best Practices, the Markie Awards, and more!

CX Spotlight Sessions

  • “Accelerating Big Profits in Big Data,” Jeff Tanner, Baylor University
  • “Using Content Marketing to Impact Every Stage of the Buyer’s Journey,” Jennifer Agustin, Bizo
  • “Expanding Your Marketing with Proven Testing and Optimization,” Brian Border, Shutterfly and Matthew Balthazor, Epson
  • “Modern Marketing: The New Digital Dialogue,” Cory Treffiletti, Oracle

A Special Marquee Session

Dell’s Hayden Mugford will speak on “The Digital Ecosystem: Driving Experience Through Contact Engagement.” She will highlight how the organization built a digital ecosystem that supports a behaviorally driven, multivehicle nurturing campaign. The Dell 1:1 Global Marketing team worked with multiple partners to innovate integrations with Oracle Eloqua, Oracle Real-Time Decisions for real-time decision logic, and a content management system (CMS) that enables 100 percent customized e-mails. The program doubled average order values for nurtured contacts versus non-nurtured and tripled open and click-through rates versus push e-mail.

Other Oracle Marketing Cloud Session Highlights

  • Thought leadership by role
  • Exploring the benefits of moving to the Cloud
  • Product line roadmaps and innovations in Marketing
  • Technical deep dives for product lines within Marketing
  • Best practices and impactful business measurements
  • Solutions that are Integrated across CX

Target Audience

Session content is geared toward professionals in Marketing, Marketing Operations, Marketing Demand Generation, Social: Chief Marketing Officers, Vice Presidents, Directors and Managers.


Customers attending Marketing—CX Central @ OpenWorld will be able to:

  • Gain insight into delivering consistent cross-channel marketing
  • Discover how to provide the right information to the right customer at the right time and with the right channel
  • Get answers to burning questions and advice on business challenges
  • Hear from other Oracle customers about recommended best practices to help their organization move forward
  • Network and share ideas to help create a strategy for connecting with customers in better ways

It Wouldn’t Be an Oracle Marketing Cloud Event Without a Party!

We’re hosting CX Central Fest:  a unique customer experience specifically designed for attendees of CX Central. It will include a chance to rock out at a private concert featuring Los Angeles indie electronic pop group, Capital Cities! Join us Tuesday, September 30 from 7-9 p.m.

OpenWorld is a fabulous way for your customers to see all that Oracle Marketing Cloud has to offer. Pass on an invitation today.

By Laura Vogel (Oracle)

Oracle Customer Reference Forum – Apex IT – Oracle Sales Cloud

Apex IT, an Oracle Platinum Partner, wins Nucleus Research's ROI Award with a 724% return. Learn how you can improve your ROI with Oracle Sales and Marketing Cloud.

We are pleased to invite you to a discussion with Apex IT on industry trends, why sales automation is important, the decision making process for choosing Oracle Sales Cloud, and benefits achieved since going live. Apex IT works with clients large and small, assisting them at all stages in the process: organizing ideas and developing strategies, selecting the most appropriate package, implementing it for best results, and keeping systems optimized with long-term support. Please plan to register at least three hours prior to the event taking place in order to participate and get the dial-in information associated in due time.


  • Bryan Hinz, Vice President of Business Development, Apex IT (Speaker)
  • Chris Haven, Senior Director Product Management, Oracle (Moderator)

Organization Profile:

Since 1997, Apex IT has helped public sector, corporate and higher education clients use technology to streamline their processes and increase productivity and profitability. Based on products and best practices from Oracle our experts provide a full range of enterprise solutions including CX/CRM and related applications that support marketing, sales, and service; HR and HR Helpdesk; and Business Intelligence. Our project approach is results-driven and our attitude is people-focused.

Industry: Professional Services
Products/Services: Oracle Sales Cloud
Organization Website:

Event Description:

In this informal reference call, you will have the opportunity to hear Apex IT discuss industry trends, why sales automation is important, the decision making process for choosing Oracle Sales Cloud, and benefits achieved since going live. The call will open with a brief overview, followed by discussion, and an open question and answer session. Please allow one hour for the call.

Why Oracle:

Apex IT needed a mobile-enabled sales force automation tool that could promote account collaboration and integrate with Microsoft Outlook. Oracle Sales Cloud met these needs and Apex IT’s requirements for:

  • Improved collaborative selling
  • Improved quality of customer engagement and information
  • Improved business development
  • Improved pipeline management

Please plan to register at least three hours prior to the event taking place in order to participate and get the dial-in information associated in due time.

After you register your information will be forwarded through an Approval Process. Once your registration request has been validated against the invitation database, you will receive an email confirmation with your registration details as long as there is availability. Please be advised that Apex IT will revise the registrants list and may dismiss registrations as they see fit.

Note: To access more information at the corporate site you would need an account. If you do not already have an account, getting one is easy and free. Click on the link and you will be prompted to create an account. After you have created your account, you will be automatically returned to the full page description of this event.

Register Now!

Oracle Enhances Oracle Social Cloud with Next-Generation User Experience

Today’s enterprise must meet the technology standards of today’s consumer. According to a recent IDG Enterprise report, enterprises that invest in consumerized, easy-to-use technologies experience a 56 percent increase in employee productivity and a 46 percent increase in customer satisfaction. In order to deliver that simple and intuitive experience across even the most advanced social management capabilities, Oracle today introduced Social Station, an innovative new workspace within Oracle Social Cloud’s Social Relationship Management (SRM) platform. With Social Station, users benefit from a personalized and intuitive user experience that helps increase both the productivity and performance of social business practices.

News Facts

  • Oracle today introduced Social Station, an innovative new workspace within Oracle Social Cloud’s Social Relationship Management (SRM) platform that helps organizations socially enable the way they do business.
  • With an advanced yet intuitive user interface, Social Station delivers a compelling user experience that improves productivity and helps users more easily deliver on social objectives.
  • To help users quickly and easily build out and configure their social workspaces, Social Station provides drag-and-drop capabilities that allow users to personalize their workspace with different social modules.
  • With a new Custom Analytics module that mixes and matches more than 120 metrics with thousands of customizable reporting options, users can customize their view of social data and access constantly refreshed updates that support real-time understanding.
  • One-click sharing capabilities and annotation functionality within the new Custom Analytics module also drives productivity by improving sharing and collaboration across teams, departments, and executives.
  • Multiview layout capabilities further allows visibility into social insights by offering users the flexibility to monitor conversations by network, stream, metric, graph type, date range, and relative time period.
  • Social Station also includes an Enhanced Calendar module that provides a clear visual representation of content, posts, networks, and views, helping users easily and efficiently understand information and toggle between various functions and views.
  • To support different user personas and social business needs, Oracle plans to continue building out Social Station with additional modules, including content curation, influencer engagement, and command center creation.



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