Ian Jacobs

VP, Research Director

Forrester Bio

Author Insights


Digital Businesses: Make Strategic Investments In 2023 To Survive Economic Turbulence

Ian Jacobs August 23, 2022
To succeed with digital business in 2023, invest and innovate judiciously by doubling down on customers’ pressing needs.

If You Can Say It, You Can See It: Dall-E And You

William McKeon-White June 22, 2022
Or, “How a natural language image generation AI used as a meme generator by social media may impact your business.” Welcome To The Future — It’s Got AI-Generated Art Let’s play a quick game. Which of the below images were made by an AI system generating images based on word prompts? Let’s pretend you guessed […]

Qualtrics’ $1.125B Acquisition Of Clarabridge Upends The Customer Feedback Management Market

Judy Weader July 30, 2021
Yesterday evening, Qualtrics announced that it’s acquiring Clarabridge in an all-stock deal worth $1.125 billion. This is a great move for Qualtrics. In one swoop, it has secured the best-in-class analytics capabilities that will define the future of voice-of-the-customer programs as firms decrease their reliance on surveys and focus instead on understanding customers based on […]

Unified Agent Augmentation Tools: A Fractured And Disorganized Landscape In Customer Service

Ian Jacobs June 16, 2021
Agent augmentation tools make the lives of contact center agents easier by enabling them to deliver high-caliber customer support. Yet today’s technology is siloed; there isn’t a unified agent augmentation solution that aggregates all of the tools that agents need and/or should have. This gap in the customer service technology market creates the conditions for […]

Microsoft Doubles Down On Healthcare And Conversational AI With $19.7B Purchase Of Nuance

Daniel Hong April 15, 2021
Earlier this week, Microsoft announced its intent to acquire Nuance for $19.7 billion in its second-largest acquisition after LinkedIn. For the past 15 years, Nuance has been the largest independent speech recognition vendor servicing healthcare and enterprise customer service markets. With this acquisition, Microsoft gets serious healthcare chops, an arsenal of conversational AI assets (including […]

Brands Bear (Some) Blame For Conditions At Outsourcers

Ian Jacobs January 13, 2021
Between really bad press (here and here) and bankruptcy (here), large contact center outsourcers have seen a rough last few months. Bad press for outsourcers spells trouble for and affects the brands that contract with them: Consumers will react regardless of whether the news comes from the company itself or up the supply chain. Negative […]

Predictions 2021: It’s All About Empathy, Digital, And Virtualizing Customer Care

Ian Jacobs October 21, 2020
The purpose of customer service is no longer just to alleviate run-of-the-mill inconveniences; it is to provide fundamental and necessary services for consumers devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Learn how customer service will evolve in 2021.

Extend The Life Of Your Chatbots By Looking Beyond The Holiday Season

Ian Jacobs October 21, 2020
Let’s just get it out of the way at the start of this blog: COVID-19 has remade retail and has forced a rapid shift toward digital customer service interactions. And now the holidays are nigh, and e-commerce seems to be the order of the day (or the “plague year”). To help with this rush of […]

Key Takeaways From Forrester’s Customer Service Executive Roundtable On Turning Challenges Into Opportunities

Ian Jacobs June 12, 2020
Twenty-two customer service executives shared their victories and challenges during the coronavirus pandemic. Read key takeaways from this conversation about customer service during COVID-19.

FORRward: A Weekly Read For Tech And Marketing Execs

Emily Collins April 27, 2020
COVID-19 Is Proving That Consumer Voices Can Influence Business Decisions Last week, major corporations learned firsthand the power of values-based consumers. Many received harsh backlash after applying for and receiving funds from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), intended to help small businesses keep their workforces employed amid the COVID-19 crisis. The US government allocated $349 billion to the program, but many small businesses were denied after larger players received […]

Plan For The Work-At-Home Contact Center You Want, Not The One You Were Forced To Build During This Pandemic

Ian Jacobs April 21, 2020
To help brands navigate the historic customer service challenges posed by the current pandemic and subsequent need for mass mobilization of a remote workforce, Forrester has created a four pillar framework for a building a successful work from home contact center.

Work-At-Home: Just The First Step In Contact Centers’ Response To COVID-19

Ian Jacobs April 9, 2020
Learn why now is the right time for brands to move to a work-at-home model for contact center agents.

Choose The Right Global Omnichannel Contact Center Outsourcer

Ian Jacobs March 16, 2020
The brand damage of poor customer service outsourcing had become apparent. So, why are more companies considering outsourcing more?

The Impact Of Chatbots On Your Seasonal Workforce

Ian Jacobs November 1, 2019
Can chatbots help meet your holiday hiring needs — and should they? Forrester Principal Analyst Ian Jacobs explains in this video.

Predictions 2020: AI Shakes Up Customer Service Workforce And Operations

Ian Jacobs October 31, 2019
AI will change how organizations staff, run, and manage their customer service teams. Read Forrester's 2020 customer service predictions to learn more.

“Why Can’t This Stupid Chatbot Do What I Want?”

Charles Betz October 2, 2019
For all their promise, chatbots are still decidedly imperfect. With good reason: The processes underlying their functioning are numerous and complex. But, there's hope.

A Recession Looms — How Will You Keep Experience In Focus?

Ian Jacobs September 11, 2019
In this short video, I ask a simple question with no simple answer: How can customer service organizations avoid wild swings between a focus on experience and a focus on efficiency if macroeconomic conditions deteriorate? Let me know your thoughts on what your organization is doing to avoid this oft-repeated behavior. Email me at ijacobs@forrester.com. […]

Why Chatbots Can’t Read Your Mind

Charles Betz August 21, 2019
Chatbots rely on natural language processing (NLP) to understand you. Before they can process a language, they must learn it. Read more.

Cut Through The Chatbot Hype To Find The Right Conversational AI Solution For You

Ian Jacobs June 26, 2019
In this short take, I discuss the lessons learned from evaluating 14 vendors for the Forrester New Wave™: Conversational AI For Customer Service, Q2 2019. Check out the video below. For more insights, Forrester clients can dig into the full evaluative research here. And if you have more questions, reach out via inquiry.

Stop Trying To Replace Your Agents With Chatbots — No, Seriously!

Ian Jacobs April 17, 2019
Will chatbots save you money? Your short-term savings likely won’t outweigh the long-term damage caused by continuously frustrating your customers.
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