Contact Center managers are progressively deploying IP telephony in their contact centers to drive significant operational savings, Frederic Dickey the director of Product Management at Sangoma, a Toronto, Canada-based VoIP gateways provider, told TMCnet in an exclusive interview.
Sangoma offers gateways that can be seamlessly integrated and are easily scalable in any architecture - so developers have the tools needed to create cost-effective, powerful, and flexible solutions.
TMCnet had the chance recently to chat with Dickey about Sangoma’s role in the contact center market and their offerings.
Our exchange follows.
Sangoma is now very active in the call center market. What does Sangoma offer in this market?
Sangoma acquired Paraxip Technologies in July 2008, which gave our company a great set of software building blocks that enable improved efficiency and reduced costs in running Contact Center applications.
For example, Sangoma’s NetBorder Software Suite adds smart connectivity to IP-based Contact Center applications such as inbound, outbound, routing and IVR and as a result, allows IP Contact Center solutions to connect to legacy PSTN equipment.
In addition, the contact center can be enhanced with superior ‘Call Progress Detection’ which automates outbound or notification campaigns, remote agents can seamlessly be integrated into the IP infrastructure, and IP contact centers can be deployed in configurations without the need for a costly softswitch.
What is Call Progress Analysis and why is this important to outbound call centers?
Call Progress Analysis “CPA,” also called Call Progress Detection “CPD,” is a generic term for signal processing algorithms that operate on audio during call setup. The goal of CPA is to determine the nature of the callee or the outcome of call setup to an external network – both traditional or IP. Specifically, when a call or session is being established, and the caller or initiator is interested in knowing if someone answered, if the line is busy, and so on.
When the caller is an automated application, such as a predictive dialer, CPA algorithms are used to perform the classification automatically. The NetBorder Call Analyzer, in combination with our partners' dialer applications, ensure fast and accurate automated call classification which automatically translates into better efficiency of agents and higher quality customer interactions. For a mid-sized outbound contact center, the combination of the dialer/NetBorder can actually save millions of dollars in yearly annual operating costs.
What other trends do you see in the contact center market and how does Sangoma help?
Contact Center managers are progressively deploying IP Telephony in their contact centers to drive significant operational savings.
The NetBorder Agent Bridge solution complements our partner's IP Contact Center partners to enable remote location behind legacy PBX's (News - Alert) or remote agents using regular landline phones to appear as SIP agents inside the customer network. This brings the immediate benefits of virtualization and infrastructure consolidation, but without the requirement to deploy IP endpoints all the way to the far edges.
In other words, the solution brings the savings of open-standards IP telephony, but without the worries of quality of service or IP phone roll-out costs.
What about SIP trunking? Is this something that is becoming prevalent in the Call Center?
We see a rapidly increasing number of deployments with both hosted and on-premise call centers using SIP trunking. The trend is very clear in North America and is starting to grow internationally as well. This trend brings tremendous flexibility to the operating contact center and makes it possible to deploy 100 percent software solutions. Fortunately, our entire product line works perfectly in a SIP trunking scenario.
Is Open Source as important for the Contact Center as it is for other types of voice applications?
What we see is that a lot of contact center infrastructure vendors are basing their newest product line on some open source telephony package. Most of the time, the solution ends up being closed source and highly proprietary, but the low-level switching fabric or the ability to manipulate inbound and outbound calls, along with the associated media - is based on Asterisk (News - Alert), FreeSWITCH or some other open source telephony project.
No one seems to be developing contact center applications on low-level proprietary Application Programming Interfaces anymore. At the end of the spectrum, but for a very minor proportion of the market, one would find the complete open source call center suite. There are a few projects, one of which has significant uptake: Vicidial, which is worth checking out.
Learn more about Sangoma Technologies, a Gold Sponsor at ITEXPO East 2010, an event with an educational program that teaches resellers, enterprises, SMBs, and government agencies how to select IP-based voice, video, fax and unified communications to purchase or resell. ITEXPO (News - Alert) will be held Jan. 20 to 22 in Miami. Serge Forest, vice president of Marketing at Sangoma Technologies will also speak during “Has Open Source Telephony Crossed the Chasm,” to be held January 21, 2010 from 4:00-4:45pm. Don’t wait – register now.
Also, be sure to visit Sangoma at booth #601 in the main exhibit hall.
Stefania Viscusi is an assignment editor for TMCnet, covering voice and Voice over IP technologies. She also oversees production of TMCnet's e-Newsletters in the areas of Internet telephony and speech technology. To read more of Stefania's articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by Stefania Viscusi