Research Firm Labels the Contact Center WFO Market "in Transition"

Total revenue for vendors that offer a contact center workforce optimization (WFO) suite dropped by 5.2 percent to $1.58 billion, from $1.67 billion, a decrease of $86.3 million, between the first half of 2016 and 2017, according to Research and Markets' 2017 Workforce Optimization Mid-Year Market Share Report.

This decrease follows a similar pattern in the 12 months between the first half of 2016 and 2015, where total company revenue for contact center WFO suite providers decreased by $5.9 million, according to the report.

The report also notes that the number of WFO vendors is shrinking, a trend it expects to continue for the next few years. At the market's peak, there were 45 WFO suite vendors, most of whom were highly profitable. Currently there are 39 vendors, of whom only six appear to be earning more than $10 million per year, it concluded.

Of those, 22 vendors (8x8, ASC, Aspect Software, Avaya, Calabrio, ComputerTel, Coordinated Systems, dvsAnalytics, Enghouse Interactive, Envision, Genesys, HigherGround, Mitel, NICE, OnviSource, OpenText, TantaComm, TelStrat, Verint Systems, VirtualLogger, Xarios, and Zoom International) comprise 99.3 percent of the contact center WFO market; with the other 17 vendors making up just 0.7 percent of the total market, according to Research and Markets' data.

All of this points to a WFO market that is undergoing the most significant transformation in its history, the report said, noting that now more than ever, enterprises need WFO functionality like recording and analytics.

Also shaping the market is the fact that enterprises are changing their buying patterns, according to the report. Companies today want a WFO environment that enables them to acquire whatever solutions they need from any source, meaning that the future of contact center solutions is in the cloud, and WFO vendors who want to succeed in the future are going to have to make some tough decisions, it said.