Building A Contact Center Isn’t As Expensive As You Think

Contact CenterHistorically, call and contact centers have been notoriously expensive and complex to build and manage. It’s not just the telecoms technology — which is complicated enough on its own — it’s also the software to manage dozens of calls, to feed operators a stream of contact data, to handle complex dialing scenarios, to provide intelligent call scripts with automatically filled placeholders, and so on.

A contact center, whether its used for promotion, product support, or customer feedback, is something that smaller businesses ranging from manufacturers, to realtors, via software developers, and many businesses in-between would find useful, but they don’t want the expense and hassle of building a solution or buying an expensive proprietary software suite.

Open source software and the cloud have combined — as in so many cases — to provide a solution that removes much of the complexity. On the software side, we have applications like Asterisk that can act as an IP-PBX / VoIP server and ViciDial, which is a full-featured contact center application. And on the infrastructure side, we have solutions like Future Hosting’s managed SaaS application servers, which support both Asterisk and ViciDial.

I’ve discussed Asterisk and hosted software PBX’s in a previous post, so I will concentrate on ViciDial today.

ViciDial is a popular — more than 4000 sites to date — contact center application that provides everything a business needs to create and run a contact or call center that can scale from a small office setting to a large contact center with hundreds of callers.

The basic workflow of a call center goes something like this: the application feeds a caller a list of details from a contact database, dials the number, and displays a script with the contact details filled in. ViciDial does all this, but it does a great deal more. Among its standout features are the ability to manage call campaigns, to load balance calls across multiple Asterisk servers, auto-dialing with transfer to live agent when the call is answered, transfer calls or allow support personnel or management enter a call, schedule callbacks, and allow agents to log-in remotely via the web interface and work from anywhere with a phone — which is great for remote support staff.

While ViciDial is lot easier to get to grips with than many proprietary solutions, it’s even easier if you let us handle the installation, the initial configuration, and the ongoing management of your ViciDial server. Our hosted SaaS application servers are specifically tailored to each application, and, unlike many SaaS products, we don’t lock our application servers down — you get the root password and you can modify the configuration and install any additional software that you might need.

If you’d like to get in touch to talk about ViciDial, say hi in the chat window at the bottom of your screen or drop us an email.

Matthew Davis is a technical writer and Linux geek for Future Hosting.

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