Four Simple Ways to Annoy Your Callers

Yesterday, the Indosoft blog posted an article on how to turn your call center ACD into a time machine. It listed ten things you can do to make sure time passes as easily as possible for your callers. When it was being written, I thought it was a comprehensive look at the biggest issues you can face when settting up your IVR.

Then I called my cell phone provider. Continue reading Four Simple Ways to Annoy Your Callers

Two Features to Improve Your Queue Servicing

Have you ever waited, on hold, for what seemed like hours, only to get hung up on? What kind of ACD system does that? What were those people thinking? Did you like it? Do you think your clients will? Let’s assume the answer is no. What can you do to prevent it?

It turns out that there are two numbers you can control which can help prevent this tragic waste of time: Continue reading Two Features to Improve Your Queue Servicing

Get All Agents on the Same Page: Use Scripts to Access Your Issue Tracking System

We’ve looked at Q-Suite’s script builder before and how easy and flexible it can be for creating agent scripts. While the script feature is typically used to build the proper flow for the agent-customer interaction, which may involve data gathering by the agent, it can be used in in different ways. Let’s explore how we can use the script builder to merge agent scripting and issue tracking on the same page. Continue reading Get All Agents on the Same Page: Use Scripts to Access Your Issue Tracking System

Call Center ACDs and the Common Cold

I was on the receiving end of a fairly vicious cold this week and I think I’ve almost got it beat. Let us hope! Winter can also go away as well.

This got me thinking about some of the most commons reasons why your call center ACD may be sick, or just behaving poorly. Here are a few big ones. Continue reading Call Center ACDs and the Common Cold

Thousands helping Millions, Helping Your Federated Call Center Deployment

Thousands of volunteer experts have worked on Asterisk since 1999. This has made it into a powerhouse platform for telephony that you can use in your own system. Today it is a proven technology used by millions of users. Call centers and major PBX users are abandoning their legacy proprietary telephone switches to get the benefits offered by this Open-Source system. Continue reading Thousands helping Millions, Helping Your Federated Call Center Deployment

Save Money, Do More With Asterisk-based Call Center Software

You can no longer doubt that Asterisk is here to stay in the telecommunications world. Over the last decade, the rate of adoption has been skyrocketing. Call centers are no longer complaining about Asterisk-based solutions, or worrying about having to have an Asterisk expert on-hand. With Asterisk providing a platform for contact center ACD (Automatic Call Distribution) solutions to sit on, you can transition from a legacy system to one built on readily available and mature software. Continue reading Save Money, Do More With Asterisk-based Call Center Software

Keeping callers (or me in this case) interested…or at least trying to

I’m going to ramble a bit here about a personal experience I had a few days ago. I was calling in to Rogers to ask about their new tiers on Internet packages. The one that looks the most similar to mine, as far as details and pricing, is significantly better so I want to know if I can get a no hassle, no cost upgrade to this new tier. I eventually get sent to the Loyalty department, where after about a minute or so, I get put on hold. After about 15 minutes, Skype apparently decided I was connected for too long and disconnected or I hit the hold timeout for that queue, which is annoying in either case. However, while being on hold a few things popped into my mind. Continue reading Keeping callers (or me in this case) interested…or at least trying to

Save the State: Data Synchronization Between Master and Backup Services

When the center is actively handling calls, minimizing any disruptions is key. You don’t want to have your agents stop, log out, log back in, then attempt to continue as they were. Doing that is an efficiency killer. To avoid this, multiple copies of a single service can be set to run on different servers. However, data has to be kept current in order to avoid losing information when switching services from backup to master.  Synchronization of information is absolutely required when we are attempting to set up redundancy for high availability in the call center.
Continue reading Save the State: Data Synchronization Between Master and Backup Services

Leveraging APIs provided by an ACD System

In a number of previous posts I have mentioned APIs in passing. Sometimes it’s the system calling an API of an external application while other cases are using the APIs provided by the ACD System.  While most systems will offer some level of API integration it can vary greatly, which is why it’s important to know what you are looking for in terms of APIs.  Lets look at the possibilities with the various levels of provided APIs that could be leveraged in an ACD System.

  • Data Management/Manipulation — this is often the first level of APIs a system will provide as it’s the most common requested. These APIs would provide ways of loading data into the system like contacts or user accounts. It often helps with data synchronization between systems, take the user account for example perhaps they are all managed with one piece of software and re-creating them in the ACD System is a duplication of work and manually doing so can cause inconsistencies. Using an API allows for this to be automated and if any new or user changes are done in the main user system they will be pushed out automatically.
  • System Control — this is typically the second level of APIs a system will provide as it is a bit lower and allows external control of various components. This type of API can provide a wide variety of options which could be pushing the changed data to be active/live on the system, logging out users, changing queue properties, etc. Or even as low-level as restarting a service, moving a service from one server to another for maintenance, etc.
  • Developing a Custom UI — this requires a full suite of APIs that allow full control and functions that the ACD System’s UI can do. Often a business will require an ACD System to integrate tightly with a current application and this can often be the best solution.

The Q-Suite has an extensive list of APIs which allow all the levels mentioned above and have a number of customers who have developed a custom agent interface.  While most if not all functionality provided by the APIs is available from the admin or agent screens it’s often more productive to integrate these calls with other systems to improve the desired workflows.