Cameo Global Successfully Renews PCI Security Compliance

Cameo Global, an international collaboration solutions provider and industry leader in Cisco contact center solutions, is pleased to announce our successful recertification for PCI-DSS 3.2.1 compliance. The rigorous annual audit ensures Cameo is strictly adhering to Security industry best practices for protecting credit card and other critical customer information. The 3rd party compliance covers all facets of our cloud and data center services including penetration testing of our datacenters, networks, access control and information security systems. PCI Level-1 compliance provides our customers assurances that Cameo has the proper investment tools, process and technology to protect sensitive customer data.

“In terms of our cloud and managed services offerings, protecting confidential data is our most important criteria for customer success says Ed McCrossen, Chief Executive Officer at Cameo Global. This is a major financial and resource commitment for Cameo, but it makes us a better organization and more importantly, it demonstrates our commitment to our customers to deliver secure and reliable services”

The PCI compliance certifications applies to our award winning CloudBlu, a Cisco Hosted Collaboration Solution (HCS) that delivers Enterprise class voice and contact center Cloud services. In addition to PCI, Cameo is also HIPAA compliant which provides our healthcare customers with an additional certification for protecting Personal Health Information (PHI).

Cameo Solutions Again Achieves Cisco Master Cloud Provider Certifications

PLEASANTON, Calif. – January 23, 2018 – Cameo Solutions, a wholly owned subsidiary of Cameo Global and an international collaboration solutions provider, today announced they have achieved recertification from Cisco as a Master Cloud and Managed Services Provider. This distinguished certification maintains Cameo as a premier Cisco Cloud Services partner and validates their ability to deliver enterprise class collaboration and contact center services through the award winning CloudBluTM platform. Cameo’s CloudBluTM is a highly scalable Cisco Hosted Collaboration Solution (HCS) cloud services offering which delivers a full suite of voice and customer care applications. In addition to the Master Cloud Certification, Cameo also achieved Cisco Powered UC as a Service and Cisco Powered Contact Center as a Service designations.

“Our customers are looking for long-term partnerships with Cloud service providers who can deliver superior voice and contact center solutions,” said Ed McCrossen, CEO Cameo Solutions. “For over 15 years, Cameo has designed, implemented and supported Cisco’s customer care solutions and this certification ensures our commitment to maintaining our technical and operational excellence.”


The Role of the Contact Center Partner

This blog entry is a from a recent interview and article I conducted with Sheila McGee-Smith, a communications industry analyst.

“The Role of the Contact Center Partner,
Customers Dependent on You Like Never Before”.

It’s officially autumn, a typical chilly morning in my office in New Hampshire. Coffee in hand, I glance through my morning reading. My virtual “stack” includes a kaleidoscope of product announcements, customer testimonials and acquisition announcements to comb through, much of it dealing with cloud versus premises technology. This constant stream of industry updates, much related to the ongoing cloud versus premises debate, is particularly relevant to customer-facing, risk-averse contact centers.

But enterprise decisions are not just about the technology. A No Jitter post by Dave Michels, 6 Disruptive Forces to Talk About in Enterprise Communications, identified a component of the discussion that is often overlooked, the channel. Specifically, Michels highlights the changing role of the value added reseller (VAR) responsible for architecting the collaboration solutions on which many enterprises depend.

Days after Michel’s post, I had the opportunity to speak with Tim Brannock, CMO of Cameo Global, a Cisco VAR specializing in Contact Center, about how these changes are impacting his customers, his business, and the technology Cameo offers.

SMS: How are industry dynamics impacting your business? There is a customer expectation that you are responsible for solution delivery on an ongoing basis, from concept through day-to-day support. What retooling has been necessary to be successful in this new model?

TB: The retooling we have done has focused on enabling both the cloud platform and the cloud consumption model. Other than that, we’re essentially doing the same things. Implementation and support are the same; it’s just a matter of who consumes the licenses and the technology. What’s different is we’ve become a cloud service provider. That’s an entirely different kind of retooling.

In fact, retooling isn’t probably the right word; creating a true cloud services business includes an understanding and responsibility for delivering SLAs, telco services, provisioning as well as billing and operations systems (OSS/BSS). That’s a radical shift from a traditional VAR. In the old model, you sell a customer a technology solution, wrap it all up, hand them the keys and walk away. Or you do some of form of managed services for them, which always provides value. But in this model, you’re delivering it for months on your platform. They are dependent on you like never before, it becomes a true partnership.

SMS: While some companies use contact center partners, others buy directly from a vendor. Describe when a partner makes sense and when purchasing direct can be the right answer.

TB: There’s a real difference between buying from a traditional integrator – who really knows contact centers – or directly from the (newer) cloud competitors when customization is needed. I think the cloud vendors have done a good job in the sub-100 agent model, but I believe that it’s going to be a struggle for those companies to get to the higher end customers, the 500-1000+ agent deals, when their systems are not necessarily customizable. Cameo focuses on the customer’s business process, aligning with what they do, holistically, in delivering value to their end users. It takes a lot of understanding the customer’s business and what drives their metrics. That’s where Cameo shines.

SMS: There are a lot of changes occurring in the contact center market, from new deployment options like the cloud to significant vendor consolidation. What have these changes meant to your organization in its role as a contact center partner?

TB: As a VAR that has been in this business for as long as we have, we have seen the model go from premises, to hybrid, and now full cloud and all three deployment models are still relevant. It’s also interesting how fast vendor consolidation has happened. We started our business with Avaya, Nortel and everybody else, the big players. And, if you look at it now, this model is completely flipping on its head. We have a new shift going on within the VAR community, where there is also consolidation occurring.

Looking back at our strategy, it was a good move for Cameo to align exclusively with Cisco because it has been the one consistent contact center player over the last 15 years. Cisco is stable, and they’re the one continuing to grow and add value. You know where they’re going to be next year.

SMS: There are new technologies that promise to impact the contact center market in the next few years, e.g., the Internet of Things and chat bots with artificial intelligence (AI). What role does the contact center partner play in helping a company understand when and how to start trialing new technologies?

TB: There’s value with chat bots and AI, but customers are not there yet. They are still trying to capture and deploy basic omnichannel. You’d be surprised how many customers still today do not have a valid strategy or system that delivers email or web chat, let alone the internal resources to support it. I would guess eighty percent of the market is still trying to figure out an omni-channel strategy which was the big buzz word three years ago. Helping customers fill these technology gaps and delivering a better customer experience is an absolute value for what we do.

I think that’s another area where our cloud platform makes a difference. Customers struggle; they know what they want to do and by us doing it as a cloud offering, it allows us to stand up omnichannel, self-service tools and the analytics without them needing to add additional, highly skilled resources.

SMS: Has Cisco said anything about the future role of the acquired MindMeld technology in Cisco customer care applications to the contact center partners?

TB: I can definitely see how MindMeld, within the Spark offering, will add a nice front-end, self-service app to the overall experience for client self-service, using a knowledge base supported by AI, to augment the contact center. I think MindMeld is a great acquisition and look forward to seeing where it’s going to go, but we’ve had no official communication yet.

About the Author
Sheila McGee-Smith, the founder and principal analyst at McGee-Smith Analytics, is a leading communications industry analyst and strategic consultant with a proven track record in new product development, competitive assessment, market research, and sales strategies for customer care solutions and services. Her insight helps enterprises and solution providers develop strategies to meet the escalating demands of today’s consumer and business customers. She is the contact center track chair for Enterprise Connect, and her views on the market can regularly be found on and through her Twitter feed @mcgeesmith.

5 Reasons to Move to a Cloud Contact Center

More contact centers are moving to the cloud now than ever before. Cloud contact centers make day-to-day operations run smoother, easier, and ultimately reduces cost. Shifting business to the cloud is usually a company wide process, and when your operation makes the switch to cloud based systems—that most businesses will by 2020—make sure your contact center is included in that migration. And if smoother day-to-day operations and a lower operating cost isn’t enough to convince you of the benefits a cloud contact center offers, here are five more:

Global, Flexible Workforce
Contact center staff have one of the largest attrition rates of any business unit in any industry. It can be difficult to find qualified workers within driving distance of a contact center location, and nearly impossible to find support staff with specialized knowledge capable of providing Tier 3 and 4 support. Cloud contact centers are flexible by their very design. The software that agents use is web based, and with the latest Java Telephony soft phones available, you don’t even need a desk phone for agents to field calls. Cloud contact centers let you deploy workers anywhere in the world, but have calls routed to them just like they were on-site. And with the latest agent management software contact center supervisors can measure the productivity of all workers, both remote and in house.

Cloud Maintenance is Easy
All the computer hardware in your office will eventually break or become obsolete—your premise contact center hardware is no different. Cloud service providers are responsible for maintenance of the cloud equipment and ensuring you stay operational, taking the burden off of the end-using business and your in-house IT staff.

Operational Cost
One of the biggest benefits to deploying a cloud based contact center is the billing structure—a regular Operation Expenditure (OPEX) model instead of an irregular Capital Expenditure (CAPEX) structure that requires large amounts of capital spends every few years. Cloud contact centers bill users monthly, this means that each bill can be planned for and built into your operating budget.

Newest Applications
Contact center applications are now incredibly efficient and feature rich now. This is only a recent happening in the last five years or so. With traditional premise contact centers adding new software was costly, required down time, and was complicated to fully deploy. With cloud contact centers new software can be rolled out during scheduled maintenance windows and executed by the cloud provider you use. No more outages or confusing software installs.

Disaster Proof
Having all your contact center hardware onsite is like having all your eggs in one basket. Natural disaster, fire, or flooding can wipe out a multi-million dollar contact center in a matter of minutes. Cloud contact centers have all their equipment in a secure data center, safe guarding your contact center against natural disaster. Additionally, many cloud contact center providers, like Cameo Global, deliver redundant network architecture—meaning that there is a backup system running in parallel to the live one so if a network component on system ‘A’ goes down, then network ‘B’ will kick-on without service interruption.

Technology as a whole is in the midst of a major shift toward the cloud—in the next few years the cloud will process most of the computing that’s executed on a daily basis. More often than not migrating to the cloud is a company-wide decision. While it’s important to leverage the latest collaboration and communication mechanisms, make sure that you update you contact center offering when your business migrates to the cloud.

Learn more about cloud contact centers in this datasheet or contact one of our experts for a consultation.