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Author's profile photo Kavindra Joshi

Book Review: Maximizing Your SAP CRM Interaction Center ( SAP Press )

Few years back when I joined SAP in July 2007, my manager philosophically remarked “In an online world you would be recognized by the content you write”. Reading this book by John Burton I realized the words of manager were prophetic.

The author has done complete justice to the topic. First and foremost, for newbie like me , the author has dispelled the myth that Interaction Center is an extension of WebUI. The Interaction Center has got a specific purpose even though the underlying views may be same. Also there are many features in IC which are less used and not known to the CRM community at large. This book is just for any body with knowledge of CRM and after reading the book one would feel enriched and adequately prepared to work in the respective topic.The book has made an attempt to familiarize the users with advanced topics such as Multi Channel Contact Center( erstwhile Computer Telephony Integration ) and if the concepts are absorbed here , one can check out the blogs of John Burton to build up further on this topic.

The book has following chapters

  • Introduction – This chapter sets the tone for the book. Introduces the topic and touches upon the history of IC and SAP CRM IC.
  • Computer Telephony Integration(CTI) and Multi-Channel Integration– This is a very effective chapter which will help you understand the telephony related concepts. If you are keen reader , after this chapter you can decipher which capabilities are provided by a Multi Channel Contact Center and which capabilities are provided by SAP CRM.
  • IC User Interface and Technology – This introduces the UI features of IC and also touches upon how to start with IC.
  • IC Marketing,IC Service, IC Sales,IC Management and Analytics -These four separate chapters illustrates the features of IC with regards to Marketing, Sales and Analytics , Service in the IC world. If you are new to IC this chapter is a must and would help you understand the capabilities of an IC system from the business stand point. Cannot miss reading this chapter.
  • Interactive Scripting– How the use of scripting can help the agents in interacting with the users. Provides very good understanding of how in a real world this small feature would help alleviate the life of an agent.
  • Rule Modeler and Category Modeller– This is a very but a very effective chapter. IC has become rule based ( underlying technology is Business Rule Framework) and most of the activities for e.g. Lead Distribution , Opportunity Distribution , Territory Management etc. are handled using this.Also introduces ERMS the tool which is very powerful for handling emails and chats. This also be used for Order Routing. IDI or Intent Driven Interaction is introduced. The next important topic is Category Modeler and Multi Level Categorization.
  • Back-office Interaction Centers for Industries and Shared Services– I haven’t read this chapter still 🙂
  • Partnerships and Certifications , FAQs abd Conclusions – Provides information on  Certified major implementors of IC , FAQs and Some Case studies.

Guys if you are serious about learning IC, this book is an investment. Also don’t forget to follow John Burton blogs in SCN. They are also a must read.

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      Author's profile photo John Burton
      John Burton

      Hi Kavindra,

      Thank you very much. I really appreciate your kind words and book review!

      I'm sad to report that after quite a few years on the "SAP CRM best seller list" the publisher finally pulled my book off the shelves and now it is only available in electronic format. If anyone is ever in Palo Alto and wants a free autographed copy of one of the 20 or so remaining books I have sitting here in my office, please send me an email and I'll be happy to give you one (I just need to save one for my mother).

      I am currently in talks with another publisher about the possibility of doing some more CRM related books, so I'll keep everyone posted. In the meantime, there's seems to be a quite a community of experts on SCN and BPX writing blogs and articles and sharing ideas via discussion threads. So keep sharing the knowledge and let's all keep moving forward together!

      Best regards,


      P.S.  Read that chapter on Backoffice, Industries, and Shared Service Centers 🙂 .

      Author's profile photo Kavindra Joshi
      Kavindra Joshi
      Blog Post Author

      Hi John ,

      Thanks for putting the comment the generous word on this. Would be reading the chapter as suggested.

      John there is a great demand for knowledge in area of contact center and there is a greater need for a compilation of knowledge in the form of book. If you could also have few dedicated chapters on this then it would be great.

      Well I have bookmarked all the blogs in the IC and contact center area and have been using them as a knowledge building blocks.

      Also have to commend you for coming forward and writing blogs and answering questions on the forum. Its actually inspiring stuff.

      Best regards,