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9. Computer Telephone Integration
9.1. Call centers
9.2. Web contact centers
9.1. Call centers
Two solutions for increasing PSTN intelligence
Intelligent network (IN) – switches (SSP), SCP (databases plus control
Computer Telephony Integration (CTI) - network end equipment by computer
technology. CTI - utilizing computer intelligence to manage telephone calls
The CTI functions:
call control, media processing, and customer data management.
Call control functions:
#Call setup and release-related services such as dialing services and
screening services.
#Routing-related services such as automatic attendant services and
alternative routing services.
#Network interfacing services such as tone detection/generation, call
setup/release detection, and in-band signaling detection.
CTI functions (Cntd.)
Media processing:
#Voice/fax processing such as voice recording/announcement, voice and fax sending,
broadcasting, storing and forwarding.
#DTMF (dual tone multi-frequency) digit processing, text-to-speech synthesis and
speech recognition (spoken command recognition, speaker verification,…).
#Call logging such as on-line recording/monitoring and call accounting.
Customer data management
#Personal information management for call parties.
#Using calling/called identifications to retrieve the calling/called party information from
the database
#The information contained in the database may include a personal phone book,
schedule, customer profiles, billing records, and so on
Call centers
Simplified model of Call center concept
Call center concept
Call Centre
• Customer
data updates, purchase information
•Call statistics, inquiries, etc.
п‚Ё Marketing/up-selling
п‚Ё Technical support
п‚Ё Product support
п‚Ё Service support
п‚Ё 7 x 24 support
п‚Ё External customer
п‚Ё Internal customer
п‚Ё Sales Force
п‚Ё Support team
п‚Ё Back-office
п‚Ё Technical staff
• Customer
history, billing, purchases, value,
• Product & service information, packages, prices
• Marketing hints, reports, promotions
Structure of Call center
Architecture of the Call center
• Customized Agent Desktop
Applications by Customer & Call Type
• Automated Scripting of Call Handling &
• Flexibility to Add New Products,
Services, and Customer Service
• Scripted Cross-Selling
• Legacy Integration
• Billing & Meter Reading
• Direct Access
First Party Call Control CTI
(e.g. Telephone Manager)
Third Party Call Control CTI
application, e.g. Call Center (ACD)
CTI Link
Call Center Agent
First and Third Party Call Control CTI configurations
Windows client
NT CTI server
First Party Call Control
applications, e.g.
CTI applications
Communication Manager
client library
Telephone server library
CTI Link
(int. LAN)
TAPI service
LAN Card
client manager
LAN Card
LAN Card
Customer LAN
Microsoft’s TAPI CTI Architecture for LAN
Netware CTI server
Third Party Call Control CTI
CTI client
First Party Call Control
CTI applications
Telephone server library
service provider
Telephone server
library service
PBX protocol
LAN Card
server NLM
CTI Link
(int. LAN)
LAN Card
LAN Card
Customer LAN
Novell’s TSAPI Architecture
9.2. Web contact center
Model of Web contact center
T ru n k s
P S T N S e rv e r
A C D S e rv e r
M e ssa g e S e rv e r
In te rn e t
In te rn e t C a ll S e rv e r
A g e n ts
W e b S e rv e r
A p p lic a tio n
S e rv e rs
Simplified model of the Web contact center
The architecture of a Web Contact Center
Web contact center - main services
• Self Service
– Search engine
– Natural language processing
– Virtual customer representative
• Deferred Service
– Email
– Queued web response
– Scheduled callback
– Web seminar
– Chat session
• Assisted service
– Interaction with customer service representatives (agents)
– Text chat
– Voice over web
– Video conferencing
Self service
Functionalities include FAQ, search engine, streaming video and e-Business front
end. Requests initiated by the customer or partner via the company web site will go
through the same processes within the system. The web interaction server works as
the front end of the interface, since most of the self service functionalities involves
dynamic content, the enterprise network would provide back end support. Examples of
dynamic content generation include providing sales information through the ebusiness front end, and searching a knowledge base.
Deferred service
Functionalities include web callback button, email, voice mail and fax. The motif of
deferred service is the capability of time shifting the request. Such a service is
scheduled, if possible, to idle agents for better load balancing. In the handling of
deferred service, the web interaction server, which is connected to the enterprise
network, will provide the customer’s context to the handling agent in a timely fashion.
The customer’s context is usually presented in a �screen pop’ on the agent’s terminal
when she receives a call or otherwise handles the customer request.
Web callback button
Located on the company web page, the customer may click on it and select the
type of call he desires to receive, options include call back, Internet voice call,
text chat, or web collaboration. He also needs to fill in a form regarding the
nature of the call, and the desired time to receive it.
The web interaction server then handles the request, and the digital ACD server
handles scheduling. Upon the scheduled time of the call, the web interaction
server will initiate the contact with the customer via the designated channel.
Email, voice mail and fax
Although these three channels are dissimilar in their processes, the way that
agents handle them is unified. Email and voice mail are both transmitted
through the internet, routed and scheduled by the digital ACD server.
The difference is that more information can be recognized in the email to
facilitate skill based routing. In the non-web enabled call center, fax is handled
by an entirely different process, while in the web enabled counterpart fax
handling is integrated with email due to the similarity in their nature. Requests of
this type will be placed in second priority queue and routed to the appropriate
agent based on the required skills.
Assisted service
This type of service requires the exclusive and immediate attention of a human agent,
therefore it is the most expensive and is difficult to maintain a certain level of service.
The web interaction server will again show �screen pops’ of the context of the customer
simultaneously when the connection is established. Services in this category include
public switched telephone network (PSTN) calls, Internet voice calls, web seminar, IRC
seminar and cooperative browsing.
PSTN calls
A call is initiated by the customer, and reaches the contact center via the PSTN
network. The analogue signal is converted to an internet protocol in the gateway.
Simple IVR will be used to gather information about the customer and the nature of the
call at the gateway. Two pieces of important information are the calling phone number
and the caller’s language preferences.
Internet voice calls
It will be handled in a very similar way as PSTN calls. Should the customer choose this
option, she needs to fill in and transmit the nature of call and other information that
may assist the handling. A call control applet needs to be downloaded if there isn’t
already compatible software installed, which provides the call controls resembling that
of a conventional phone. When the call is connected, the digital ACD server will route
the call to an appropriate agent as soon as one is available. Context of the caller will
be shown in a screen pop on the agent’s computer.
Text chat, text chat master
The customer may initiate a text chat session via the call-me button, or he may summon
a text chat master during their conversation with each other. It is not uncommon for an
adept agent to handle four simultaneous text chat sessions without prolonging the
service time of each session. Upon the connection of a delayed text chat session is
established by the web interaction server, the relevant context, is displayed in a screen
pop on the selected agent’s terminal; related standard scripts are also presented to the
agent to help them efficiently answer questions during the session. In the latter case -
when an agent is summoned - relevancy is based on the keywords presented in the text
chat before the chat master is summoned.
IRC seminar
This type of seminar is similar to the text chat session, but is open to all customers or
partners. The participant needs to enter a web page in the company web site, which
presents them an applet that resembles an Internet relay chat (IRC) session, or �chat
room’ in a postmodern term. The chat master will present his topic, and invite the
participant’s involvement. Its form is very similar to a workshop in real life.
At the scheduled time the web interaction server will begin the chat session. The
responsible agent is then prompted by a screen pop with the appropriate information
and deliver the seminar.
Cooperative browsing
This is one of the most sophisticated and intimated forms of customer interaction
enabled by the web contact center. The agent and the customer will brows the company
web site in a synchronized browser. The actual steps of the browsing are also guided by
a live agent through a text or voice channel simultaneously. Before the collaborative
browsing takes place, a connection between the agent and the customer will be
established. This may be an Internet/normal voice call/text chat. The customer needs to
download a client program. The customer can use the “follow me” function to
automatically trace the steps the agent performs. The agent can help the customer to
place order or answer question, how to utilize the company web site, or promote related
product or services to the customer’s interest. When the customer clicks on “end call”,
the session ends.
Web seminar
This channel is very similar to web collaboration, but the connection is one to many. It is
useful as an educational tool to teach the partners or customer how to use the ebusiness front end. The participant may join into this collaboration at any time.
Queuing model of Contact center
Average Talk Time
This is the total number of seconds the caller was connected to an agent. This data is available from
the ACD.
Average Speed of Answer
This is the average time it takes for the call to be picked up by the call center’s ACD. Often this is
the number of “rings” before the ACD picks up the call and distributes it either to a live agent or to an
IVR. This data is available from the ACD.
Average Time in Queue
This is equal to the total time in queue to reach an agent divided by the total number of calls
answered. This data is available from the ACD.
Calls Per Hour
This is the average number of calls that an agent handles per hour. This data is available from the
Hold Time
This is the average number of seconds that a agent places a customer on hold while trying to find the
callers answer. This data is available from the ACD.
Agents’ Occupancy
This is the average time that a agents in their seat, connected to the ACD, and ready to answer calls
as a percent of the total time they are at work. This data is available from the ACD.
Adherence to Schedule
This is the average time the agent is in their seat as per the work force management schedule.
Unified messaging
Convergence of networks/services/ applications
10. Convergence – Concluding remarks
• Three types of separate networks are converged to the NGN
#PSTN/ISDN - voice
#IP network - data
#Mobile network - voice
• Aspects of convergence
#Access – all types of media, broadband
#Core networks – selection of IP as common transport technology
#Services – multimedia (Triple Play)
#Terminal devices – multimedia terminals
• Standardization
• Platforms
Convergence Pyramid
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