Twilio Flex Developer Spotlight - U-Haul
Welcome to the second blog post of the Twilio Flex Developer Spotlight series. This time, we are featuring a team of developers at U-Haul. This post is based on my experience attending a Twilio hackathon at U-Haul headquarters in Phoenix, Arizona in May 2019.
When you think of U-Haul, you most likely think of DIY moving trucks, trailers, and storage boxes. But did you know that U-Haul employs a team of software developers that build and maintain many of their software applications?
The development team at U-Haul have built their technology stack including their own customer relationship management, billing, payment and web chat systems. They standardized on a premise-based voice contact center solution years ago for their contact center agents. And since the business is seasonal, they have maintained a hardware footprint capable of supporting up to twice the number of full-time agents during peak season.
U-Haul Company’s ...
Encrypting and Storing Twilio Flex Recordings Off-site
By default, Flex stores recordings in a Twilio-owned Amazon S3 bucket. Some customers may have security requirements that require recordings to be stored in a location which they control. This blog post will guide you through how to accomplish just that. Included is a sample project which allows your recordings to be stored in your own Amazon S3 bucket, as well as a Proxy Service which will play back the recordings from your Amazon S3 bucket.
First things first. The easiest way to enable recordings in Flex is to enable WFO first. Enabling WFO requires you to select a Flex Billing plan. Once WFO is enabled, in the Twilio Console, go to Flex -> WFO or just click here. Make sure that Call Recording is turned on:
If you are still in the trial mode, you can enable Flex Recordings by using the Actions Framework. You will need ...
NEW AUTOPILOT FEATURES 🎉 🤖 : Now build Chatbots with Autopilot and Studio
- Programmable Chat: Autopilot now directly supports Programmable Chat, allowing you to build chatbots for your website or mobile app, or deploy Assistants you’ve already built to Programmable Chat with just a few clicks — existing logic and configuration will work in Chat conversations with zero code changes.
- Autopilot Studio Widget: A new Studio Widget that allows you to directly add Autopilot Assistants to your Studio flows. It also makes handing off messaging interactions from your bot to an agent a lot simpler.
The popularity of chat as a customer support channel has exploded as customers are increasingly interacting with businesses using web and mobile apps and messaging channels like SMS, Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp. The asynchronous and informal nature of chat has a lot of advantages for customers and businesses. It delivers a better experience to customers by making it easy to contact support. It allows businesses to more efficiently ...
Twilio Flex Developer Spotlight - Scorpion
Welcome to the first installment of a new blog series called Twilio Flex Developer Spotlight. Over the next few months we’ll showcase how developers use Programmability with Twilio Flex to solve contact center challenges.
This post features Josiah, a web developer at Scorpion. Scorpion is a full-service digital marketing and technology company that serves over 10,000 clients across multiple industries. Scorpion improves their clients’ digital presence and also serves as a contact center outsourcer for businesses nationwide. The initial deployment of Twilio Flex is for ScorpionConnect agents who field chat inquiries on behalf of these businesses.
Prior to working on Twilio Flex, Josiah had begun to build an in-house contact center solution working with local data stores and orchestrating tasks, context and workers. A daunting task for anyone. “We required a deeply custom [agent] dashboard that would allow us to take control of what, when and how we ...
Announcing Salesforce Flex CTI GA
Today we are excited to announce the Flex Salesforce CTI (Computer Telephony Interface) is now Generally Available, with support for both Salesforce Classic and/or Lightning. Flex Salesforce CTI is included at no extra cost within your Flex license and enables you to supercharge your Salesforce Sales and Service Cloud with omnichannel customer communications. Get started here!
Once you’ve successfully installed the CTI integration, you will be able to access Flex via Salesforce’s openCTI utility bar component. This enables you to:
- Perform automatic search and screen pop to present contextual information to agents
- Keep the Salesforce screen in sync for agents moving between tasks with context switching
- Create an automatic record of engagements going through Flex
- Use Single Sign-On to authenticate directly to Flex when logging in from Salesforce
- Use dual monitors to let agents take full advantage of both Flex and Salesforce real estate
- In beta ...
Set Up a Dev Environment to Write Twilio Flex Salesforce Plugins
Writing plugins for Flex that reside within the SFDC can be a bit of a challenge. The goal of this guide is to make it a bit easier for you as a developer to set up a development environment for creating these plugins.
It is strongly recommended that you start with either a fresh Salesforce Sandbox or Developer Edition for this exercise, although there is no technical reason why an existing environment should not work. In this guide, we'll use a brand new Developer Edition of Salesforce.
Create the Salesforce Flex plugin and run it locally
We create our plugin with the
create-flex-pluginnpm package. Please refer to the documentation here for help getting started.
Let's name our plugin
plugin-sfdc. We create the standard plugin by running:
npm init flex-plugin plugin-sfdc
During the plugin creation process, you will be asked to provide a Twilio Flex Account Sid. You don't have ...
Disruption Triggers Defense - How Twilio Flex is Shaking Up the Contact Center Landscape
Listening to the main stage panel of contact center leaders at Enterprise Connect 2019, I was reminded of the market reaction when Apple launched the iPhone in 2007. Then, like now, incumbent vendors representing the status quo bristled at the introduction of a disruptive force.
In 2007, some mobile device industry veterans questioned the potential of the iPhone. They questioned consumers’ willingness to pay $500 for a cellphone--and its ability to garner more than 2 or 3% of the market. Of course, history speaks for itself and reveals that they missed, or chose to ignore, the transformative potential of the disruption.
Today, Twilio is disrupting the communications industry with a fully programmable contact center platform called Flex. This platform allows customers unparalleled flexibility to design, create and manage a contact center tailored to their unique business model.
So it felt like deja vu all over again when several panelists on ...
Twilio Flex with Geolocation
When you run a contact center, sometimes you need to know exactly where in the world your caller is. Perhaps they’re in an emergency situation, maybe their car has broken down, or you might need to deliver something to them. Typically, these calls end up going something like a game of "Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?”
The caller attempts to poorly describe where they are. They might know a street name or nearby landmark, such as “the McDonald’s in front of the big church.” The agent is then left frantically searching different databases or Google Maps in an attempt to locate the caller. This could go back and forth for minutes, frustrating both caller and agent, and potentially extending the time a person is stuck in a dangerous situation.
The Current Reality
In a recent meeting with a contact centre manager, she advised me that the ...
What I Learned About Security from Calling 35 Contact Centers
Web applications often have secure login systems—maybe even 2FA—but what happens when a customer calls the customer support phone number? Security teams and app developers have thought a lot about online authentication, but haven't applied the same rigor to designing systems for authenticating over the phone.
At Twilio, product and engineering teams have spent the last year thinking about this problem and how to make the experience better for both the customer and the call center agent. In that time, I've called dozens of contact centers to learn about how everyone from startups to Fortune 50 companies attempt to identify and authenticate the end user. This post will take a look at that research and outline best practices to use in call centers.
To test the over-the-phone authentication, I made a list of companies where:
- I have an existing account
- There is personal info tied to ...
Get Started with Twilio Flex in Minutes
Curious about Twilio Flex but not sure how to get started? Want to know what a contact center application platform is, exactly?
Here’s a quick primer on Twilio Flex and how to launch your contact center in minutes.
What is Twilio Flex?
Flex is an instantly deployable, fully programmable contact center platform that enables you to launch a contact center out of the box. Unlike other cloud-based solutions, you can completely customize any layer of the stack using simple web-based frameworks such as RESTful APIs and React.js.
We designed Flex to run on top of Twilio's reliable and secure Super Network infrastructure, so it easily scales to thousands of agents in the cloud.
Want to try Flex for yourself for free?
Click here to create your free Flex account. When you sign up for Flex, you get 5,000 free active user hours that you can use to ...