Monitoring Agents: Are Your Agents Performing? Are They Even Trying To?

Someone was having trouble monitoring agents. Supervisors couldn’t listen to their agents. It was a simple issue to fix, and the tech logged in to make sure that listening to live calls worked. Let’s call this tech Bill.

The first agent Bill attached to was not in a live call. She engaged in chit-chat with someone nearby. A beep played, indicating a connected call. The agent went silent.


Continue reading Monitoring Agents: Are Your Agents Performing? Are They Even Trying To?

Renting Versus Owning: Solving the Dilemma

Have you ever heard renting is like throwing your money away? What about the large sum of money you have to pay to own? In the case of a house, making a down payment, buying mortgage insurance, surveys, inspections, legal fees and interest payments can also feel like your money is disappearing into a hole. The benefit of renting is the flexibility, the low upfront cost, and having someone else responsible for updates and upgrades. The benefit of owning is being able to do whatever you want with the property, and a stable environment if you plan on having the same needs for a length of time.

The same arguments go on with software and hardware. You may decide to buy a perpetual license to your call center ACD system, or you may decide to go with the monthly licensing option. But what’s the right option for you? Continue reading Renting Versus Owning: Solving the Dilemma

Integrating Your Contact Center

Where, oh where, is your agent phone rung?

Do you know where your agents are? What if the agent is a supervisor or key person who may handle some calls, but may also have to move around the building? Your business may be issuing tablets or laptops so that people can work as they move. You don’t want to force them to use their cellphone all the time, or use a headset on their iPad. Continue reading Integrating Your Contact Center

Sharing the Load

The history of the World Wide Web is the story of server-side versus client-side software. When things started to get going, the Web was largely a set of static files that were served up from the server. The browser displayed those files in as presentable manner as possible, but didn’t do any extra processing on its own that wasn’t part of the rendering process. Dynamic content was animated GIF files and the <blink> tag. Continue reading Sharing the Load

Condition Your Call Center Against Agent Error

Call center agents are professionally good at saying what they’re supposed to say. It’s your job to make sure they know what that is, at any point in a call. Sometimes this can involve a lot of training. If your agent interaction script builder is good enough, you can do with a lot less training and get your script out the door (and your agents working) faster. Continue reading Condition Your Call Center Against Agent Error

Handle More Calls With Asterisk, But Only If You’re Careful

You always want to get the most out of your investment. Push the limits of what your server can do to get the most out of it. Asterisk gives you a great way to get a lot of calls through a single server, but sometimes people wonder why they’re hitting a limit that’s lower than others get. Sometimes it’s just a matter of bandwidth. Sometimes it’s inefficient codec usage. Overuse of an application with a flaw (such as MeetMe) can cause performance issues. Very often, it’s the Asterisk call recordings that are to blame. If you’re very, very careful, there are ways to do better with your recordings. If you’re not careful, disaster and disarray await. Continue reading Handle More Calls With Asterisk, But Only If You’re Careful

Managing Do Not Call Lists

Sometimes part of customer service is making sure that you never bother them again. It’s a sad part of the call center business, but that doesn’t make it any less true. Since the United States Federal Trade Commission established the National Do Not Call (DNC) Registry in 2003, DNC blocking earned extra importance.

In most call centers, there are two kinds of Do Not Call lists: Continue reading Managing Do Not Call Lists

Your Call Center on the Go

Around the turn of the century, it was common to see websites suggesting “Best viewed in 800×640” or some other suggested resolution. As if the user had a choice of screen resolution when moving from site to site. It may have been a form of bragging: “Our site is so fancy you need a pretty good system to enjoy it.” Continue reading Your Call Center on the Go

Make Your Call Center Technology Work For You

Your call center is constantly having to deal with new challenges. Your client decides things now have to be done this way or that. Regulations change and now you need to record your data differently. Or not record it at all. A new business opportunity springs out of nowhere, and you have to respond quickly to capitalize. When you’re handling change every day, it’s important to have a flexible call center system. Our Q-Suite software is such a system.

Continue reading Make Your Call Center Technology Work For You

What To Do Before Someone Lets The Smoke Out of Your Server

The client was worried because one of the Asterisk servers had gone down without any notice at all. The overseer process on the other Asterisk server had noticed, and had taken over as the active server. The disruption was minimal. Agents were at work. But the client wanted to know what had happened, and what we could do to prevent the issue in the first place. After 30 minutes of poring over logs, digging around, and contacting the colo, we discovered that a tech had decided to swap out the power bar connected to that server. There was no notice, and not even a courtesy three-finger salute. Continue reading What To Do Before Someone Lets The Smoke Out of Your Server