Likelihood to Recommend
It is designed as an outbound campaign calling platform, and it is a home-grown design. They require administrators to come to their home office in Atlanta to receive training and certification on its use, and state that only a certified trained user can call tech support. They did not stick to that rigidly, but it was only somewhat intuitive in its design. It is best suited for an outbound call center.
- Local control: the Noble Maestro platform, once you learn it, enables you to control your call center right from your desk. You can add, delete, and skill users, you can build all of your IVR flows and change them as necessary (like for holiday closures, etc)
- User interface design: I built the pop-up windows for each queue, and was able to design them to contain quick reference information for how to handle calls, and build an order number capture module from the IVR to the agent. In other words, I could prompt the customer to punch in their order number, then display it to the agent.
- Technical support - their support group was easy to reach and easy to work with.
- Java compatibility - Java compatibility errors were constant during my time using Noble, as in multiple errors per week in an 80 person call center. Although their tech support was responsive, it was not effective in achieving a lasting solution, even when I facilitated conference calls between my telecom group and their tech support. After several months I counted 172 tech support tickets opened with Noble about Java.
- Noble advertised an Email Response Management System, and we bought it. After two years, we decided to implement it. It turned out that it was so primitive as to be worthless. As I managed the implementation, I was continually surprised at what it could not do. I would have to consult my notes from back then, but I remember that it did not have standard features like one would find in Outlook or Gmail, for example. It could not handle attachments, the CC function did not work as expected, and there was no BCC, there was no "Sent" file (we would have had to use our Outlook server to save sent emails), among many other things. After 5 months of testing and trying to make it work, we decided to discard it.
- Technical support - I listed this as a strength, but only on the responsiveness and politeness of its agents. Although there was always someone to answer the phone, we had chronic problems like Java incompatibility, reporting inconsistencies, stuck calls, two agents on the same call, and many other problems that were never solved. We always had to keep calling tech support to report these problems, and they said they investigated them, but the problems would reoccur. I ended up speaking to most of their IT chain of command over the two years.
Noble offered a lot of functions for the lowest price. The QA component alone was a big selling point, along with the PCI compliance of their remote server locations. CCX was premise-based and was bulletproof. It never went down, its UI never had problems, and we never dropped calls because of it. Verint is a better QA program and has many more bells and whistles, but is very expensive compared to Noble.
Return on Investment
- Positive: it gave us a cloud-based call center with recorded calls and a QA platform, which was a great step up from what we had
- Positive: it allowed for flexibility when we needed to expand to an outsourced location for the holidays.
- Negative: the pricing equation was difficult to understand, and the sales rep, although knowledgeable, was not very transparent and we had several surprises in pricing after signing our agreement. There was a point right after signing the contract with them that the CFO and I sought to back out due to this.
- Negative: the call center did not run smoothly. I spent approximately 20% of my time for almost 2 years troubleshooting problems with the system and managing fixes. There was always somebody in the call center with a "noble issue".