Unified Communications In The Contact Center – Part One

January, 2010

Unified communications has substantial business benefits for the contact center. But how do you separate the actual benefits from the hype, and how have contact centers coped for so long without it?

A quick scan of the unified communications software market reveals a marvellous and myriad selection of unified communications solutions.

There is plenty of evidence out there to show that unified communications has substantial business benefits to offer the contact center. But how do you separate the actual benefits from the hype, and how have contact centers coped for so long without it? Here’s a little history

Ten years ago, the contact center industry didn’t have usable IP telephony platforms and ‘presence’ was just primitive busy lamp applications. But mature contact centers still handled e-mail, paper correspondence, fax, etc, and we developed strategies for managing traffic flows on all of these media types.

That may have been OK back then, but over the last 10 years the contact center industry has seen a huge increase in capacity, largely as a result of attempts to drive business efficiency by concentrating communication to a relatively small number of specialists (agents!).

Contact centers now have to cope with a bewildering array of contact channels for each agent. Some centers manage well, others don’t.

So, unifying contact channels on the desktop is potentially benefit number 1. But isn’t there more to unified communications than that?

Well, yes, but not everything under the banner of unified communications is necessarily useful in a contact center environment. For example, a solution that delivers an IP telephony or messaging presence through several different media endpoints (even if integrated in the GUI), with no direct call center control, brings little or no benefit.

And the likely forthcoming integration of social media into unified communications apps may be more of a nightmare for the contact center manager than a dream come true.

In order to fully realise the benefits of unified communications in the contact center, careful assessment must be made and the detail of proposed solutions scrutinised. And for that we must look beyond the hype (“Our technology does X, Y and Z!”) at the detail of how they solve actual business problems.

The trouble is that detail can be hard to come by. Solutions can sometimes resemble a 25-year-old Cadillac: looking great from a distance but rather less than ‘unified’ when you get up close. Suppliers aware of this can often gloss over the detail, or shroud it in mystery.

In our next post, we suggest some searching questions to ask unified communications vendors (ourselves included!) aimed at revealing their true value as potential solutions to real business problems.

What We Offer

Sytel Limited develops and supplies Softdial Contact Center® (SCC), offering multimedia, multichannel, fully blended cloud contact center solutions, for quick and easy deployment by partners offering CCaaS or enterprise users. All Sytel cloud components are secure, resilient and scale seamlessly from 10 agents to 10,000+, whether local, mobile or remote.

  • Flexible Contact Center Platform

    Softdial Contact Center™ – tightly integrated modules, designed to deliver at scale

  • Blended Media Desktop

    Fully customisable, multi-channel, multi-session workspace

  • Work Anywhere

    Browser-based tools, no software installation required

  • Cloud Or On-Premise, Multi-Tenant

    Scalable, resilient, secure, proven

  • Customise, Localise, White Label

    Design all user interfaces to individual requirements

  • Integration Via APIs

    ‘Swap out’ components and integrate with 3rd party apps

  • World Class Development

    Continuous evolution pushing technical boundaries

Capabilities

Softdial Contact Center™ (SCC) is designed to be flexible, extensible and scalable, integrating with any legacy equipment, and meeting the most complex of requirements.

  • All Media Types

    Voice, chat, email, social, etc – fully integrated and blended

  • Agent Multi-Tasking

    Work with multiple live contact sessions of any media type

  • Dynamic Media Blending

    Automated, ‘best available’ decisions to blend and balance work load across all media types

  • Predictive Dialing

    Best-of-breed performance under compliance

  • Intelligent Routing

    Smart rules and ‘best-available’ decisions to drive great customer service

  • Agent Scripts

    Help agents achieve and maintain excellence

  • Voice and Screen Recording

    See and hear exactly how agents are interacting

  • Analytics and Data Feeds

    Measure and evaluate performance at every level

  • IVR, Bots & Conversational AI

    Design effective automated flows or integrate with 3rd party providers

  • Customer Journey Tracking

    Stored customer contact history, to aid routing and add context to conversations

Modules

A complete suite of tools, with unique flexibility to extend and swap out modules to deliver a tailored contact center solution for any environment

  • Softdial One™

    Highly flexible unified web UI for agents, supervisors and administrators

  • Softdial Scripter™

    Create complex process flow scripts for agents, IVR, chatbots and other applications

  • Sytel AI Dialer™

    Best-of-breed predictive dialing under any compliance rules

  • Softdial Pathfinder™

    Precise routing rules for ‘best available’ connection

  • Softdial Media Server™

    Core telephony functions to manage all inbound/ outbound SIP calls

  • Softdial Reporter™ 5

    Fully customisable performance stats, charts and reports, across all channels

  • Softdial Publisher™

    Comprehensive data output to build your own reports

  • Softdial Recording Monitor™

    Audio and screen recording of agent activity to ensure the highest standards

  • Softdial Campaign Manager™

    Comprehensive configuration and control for outbound campaigns

  • Softdial Repository™

    Central storage and configuration of common resources

  • Sytel Global Compliance™

    Flexible ‘no contact’ rules to protect contact center and consumer

Markets

Performance and efficiency for a wide range of business applications

  • Customer Service

    Connect quickly to well equipped agents

  • Sales & Telemarketing

    Maximise agent productivity with best-of-breed predictive dialing

  • Healthcare

    Secure, highly-configurable multichannel communications for excellence in patient care

  • Market Research

    Best-of-breed predictive dialing with CATI integration

  • Collections

    Automated inbound/ outbound blending integrated with any debt management app