Welcome to Penelope… a digital receptionist for SMEs

moneypenny_penelopeMoneypenny, apparently the UK’s largest answerphone service, has launched Penelope, a digital receptionist for SMEs.

Penelope is an app that lets small business owners control where and when their business calls ring 24/7. The app uses voice recognition technology (via Nuance and Aurix) and is supported by real people, otherwise known as HaaS (Humans as a Service).

Rather like emails, which can be dealt with immediately and on whatever device, calls can be put through to either a mobile, office phone, home phone or to a colleague. Other features include Moneypenny PA, a ‘real’ person who can take calls. Continue reading

FTSE 350 CEOs struggle with the digital personal touch


FTSE 350 companies with CEOs who employ a digitally connected leadership style generate better commercial performance overall
according to a new study

The research, commissioned by Sitecore, a web content management and customer experience management software company, reveals that only 7% of leaders are engaging with their stakeholders and consumers in a two-way dialogue using digital channels. Continue reading

The British Library is for smelling books not opening websites


The British Library is wonderful and like many places in London it can provide intellectual and quiet relief from the daily grind, and especially the horrors of the Euston Road.

So the news that the British Library along with the National Library of Scotland, the National Library of Wales, the Bodleian Libraries, Cambridge University Library and Trinity College Library Dublin now have the right to archive a copy of every UK digital publication, as they have done with print publications for several centuries, is big news. Continue reading

Darkness at noon? For humans, more like one second to midnight

darkness at noonFor those of you who haven’t come across him, Arthur Koestler was a great writer who committed suicide with his wife at their Knightsbridge home in 1983.

Hungarian-born and a man of the Deep Left, his 1940s book Darkness At Noon was one of the first to recognise that the Utopian of a truly communist society was over and would always end in a totalitarian state. Think of it as a precursor to 1984.

Koestler was also a committed Zionsit (we can’t all be perfect) and in 1932 while drifting over the Arctic in a Zeppelin (as you do), dropped a Star of David flag onto the tundra of Russia’s Novaya Zemlya and claimed it as a Hebrew national home. Continue reading

Retailers have survived the first digital coming, but what’s next?

By regular contributor Lloyd Gofton who tweets here

high street deathHMV’s recent demise was hardly a surprise. The writing has been on the wall for so long that it’s been painted over and graffitied many times since.

If we rewind ten years to 2003, the conversation around retail was focused on the importance of the web Continue reading