BOSTON, MA--(Marketwire - October 7, 2009) - The latest research report published by the Aberdeen Group, a Harte-Hanks Company (NYSE: HHS), titled "Delivering Customer Service via the Contact Center and the Web: The Customer's First Line of Attack" found that top performing organizations are looking to turn to multiple service delivery channels to meet the reach of their customers. While the majority of service requests are still dealt with in the contact center, leading organizations are expanding their portfolio of delivery streams such as those enabled through the web, email, social-media and self-service. The increased interest in multiple channels is aimed at fending off productivity, cost, and customer expectation management-related pressures.

"Respondents to a recent survey indicate that nearly 52% of their service requests originate in non-contact center-based channels, down from 55% in 2008," said Sumair Dutta, senior research analyst, Aberdeen Group. "This indicates a critical need among service organizations to ensure consistency, efficacy and validity of available service data across all channels where customers may be searching for answers."

Research findings in the "Delivering Customer Service via the Contact Center and the Web" report indicate that top performing companies are nearly two times as likely as all others to employ solutions for customer management, contact center management, and self-service enablement. As such, these firms exhibited the following:

--  75% First-Call Resolution Rates as opposed to 60% for all others
--  A 4.3/5 level of customer satisfaction as opposed to a 3.8/5 level for
    all others
--  A 21% decrease in support costs over the last year, compared to a 2%
    reduction for all others

The report also finds that leading service organizations are considerably more likely to embolden their service teams and customers with a strong focus on knowledge management so as to adequately route service requests to appropriate channels to reduce resolution times and bypass unnecessary secondary visits. In addition, leading firms are more likely than all others to place a significant focus on training their contact center agents on the effective use of available information while educating customers on the availability of non-contact center-based service delivery channels.

A complimentary copy of this report is made available due in part by the following underwriters: Astute Solutions and FrontRange Solutions. To obtain a complimentary copy of the report, visit:

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About Aberdeen Group, a Harte-Hanks Company

Aberdeen provides fact-based research and market intelligence that delivers demonstrable results. Having queried more than 30,000 companies in the past two years, Aberdeen is positioned to educate users to action: driving market awareness, creating demand, enabling sales, and delivering meaningful return-on-investment analysis. As the trusted advisor to the global technology markets, corporations turn to Aberdeen for insights that drive decisions.

As a Harte-Hanks Company, Aberdeen plays a key role of putting content in context for the global direct and targeted marketing company. Aberdeen's analytical and independent view of the "customer optimization" process of Harte-Hanks (Information - Opportunity - Insight - Engagement - Interaction) extends the client value and accentuates the strategic role Harte-Hanks brings to the market. For additional information, visit Aberdeen or call (617) 723-7890, or to learn more about Harte-Hanks, call (800) 456-9748.

© 2009 Aberdeen Group, Inc., a Harte-Hanks Company
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Contact Information: Media Contact: Aly Pinder Research Analyst Aberdeen Harte-Hanks (617) 854-5388