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Call Center Outfit Talkdesk Seeks Channel Partners

April 17, 2017
By Paula Bernier - Executive Editor, TMC

It’s a busy time for Talkdesk.

Last week the cloud-based call center company was in Las Vegas actively seeking new channel partners. And next week Talkdesk will be hosting its Opentalk Summit 2017 in San Francisco, at which companies such as Netflix, Slack, Target (News - Alert), and Twilio will be sharing their customer experience stories.

I had the opportunity to sit down with Craig Klemp, Talkdesk’s senior director of business development and partnerships, last week to get an update on the company and learn more about its channel partner program.

Talkdesk is a five-year-old company that prides itself on the strength of its integrations. The company’s automation framework allows Talkdesk to work out of the box with 25 tools from such companies as Salesforce and Zendesk, Klemp explained.

Klemp added that Talkdesk continues to innovate its product, having introduced Callbar earlier this year. Talkdesk Callbar is a Web application that allows users to make and receive phone calls from anywhere on the desktop.

“The traditional call center is pretty outdated, and customers now are asking to interact with companies in new ways,” added Klemp. Talkdesk enables that, he said, by supporting voice and SMS communications, and enabling mobile interactions via its mobile SDKs.

And because the Talkdesk solution is cloud-based, it’s much faster to deploy than traditional call centers. It can take months or more to get a traditional call center up and running, Klemp said. But with Talkdesk, he added, organizations can get a trial going in just an hour, and an actual deployment ready to roll within days or weeks. Talkdesk also scales as demand requires.

Speaking of scale, Talkdesk is working to scale up its channel effort. Today the company has just a couple channel partners, which are master agents, Klemp explained. But it’s spent the last year building a partner portal and training curriculum, and getting contracts in place. And now it’s in the midst of recruiting channel partners.

Today less than 10 percent of Talkdesk sales come through the channel. Klemp said the goal is to bring that up to around 50 percent within the next few years.

Talkdesk offers dedicated channel manager support, and leverages its own sales team in working with the channel, said Klemp. He added there is no conflict between internal sales and the channel. 

Edited by Alicia Young

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