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Why use Shifts at all?

Most call centers have “on hours” and “off hours” that route callers to different options based on time of day and day of week.  ShoreTel ECC has a concept entitled SHIFTS.   Shifts have day types:  Weekday, Weekend and Holiday.    You  go to System Parameters in the Contact Center Director, then Schedules and the create a Shift.  

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Why Route by DNIS?

Routing by the number the caller dialed, or DNIS is the preferred routing strategy for any Call Center call flow.  Clearly you can assign a DID phone number to a specific call flow and anyone who knocks on that door is answered by the same group of agents.   It is much more efficient to grab the DNIS information, however, and use it to index a database to retrieve the call routing information.  In this way, we only need one door to the call center! 

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One of the most requested applications we are asked about ShoreTel, is the possibility of doing "interviews" and "Surveys".  The fact is, that it is very possible to do this on a ShoreTel.  You do not need the Enterprise Contact Center either, we can create this solution on the basic ShoreTel iPBX.

In this application, the caller dials an extension or DID that terminates in a VXML type application.   They are greeted with a custom prompt and then asked a number of questions.  The answer to each question, punctuated by the # key, is recorded into a voice mail box.  

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As more and more applications become cloud based hosted solutions, the more urgent will your choice of Internet Browser become!  The desktop warfare, in our opinion, is really getting out of control!  You would think that you can use any browser for any website you want to surf, but such is not the case.  We recently made the mistake of trying to pay our Microsoft Office Online invoice while using a Firefox browser.  

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ShoreTel ECC "Sticky" Email?

May 19, 2015 7:23 PM | 0 Comments

Call Centers had no sooner become “Contact” Centers  when multimedia “nice to have” features became “must have” requirements.   The more mobile the customer base, the more likely that they are on a smart phone and not sitting at a desk computer.   They want “contact” however they want to communicate.  That use to mean voice by telephone, but might now mean text, chat, email and now video! 

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A question that keeps coming up in the support ticket system is the subject of InGate and Session Border Controllers.  Folks want to know if you need a SBC to configure a SIP trunk.  Why not just use a Firewall?  Can you configure ShoreTel SIP trunks to work without a SBC?  Continue Reading...

WebRT Call Center Demo!

May 13, 2015 12:15 PM | 0 Comments

What is a “peer to peer” call center?  The concept is a fully functioning call center that exists only in the internet browser of the workgroup agents and supervisor participating.  In fact, no telephone lines are needed, beyond the published customer service number.  There is no large internal LAN network.

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WebRTC Demo Call Center here!

March 27, 2015 4:01 PM | 0 Comments

What is a “peer to peer” call center?  The concept is a fully functioning call center that exists only in the internet browser of the workgroup agents and supervisor participating.  In fact, no telephone lines are needed, beyond the published customer service number.  There is no large internal LAN network.

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Can I Text Your Call Center?

March 27, 2015 3:53 PM | 0 Comments

Phone only ‘call centers’ have been rapidly replaced with ‘contact centers’ that can also handle email and chat communications.  Customers want more options for interacting with companies they buy products and services from.  Chat requires the customer to be at a computer and though email may be sent from a mobile phone, generally the sender is at a desktop.    In a wireless world in which every man, woman and child seems to wonder around with a ‘text’  or sms enabled device on their person, does it not make sense that they would want to text your call center?

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Phone only ‘call centers’ have been rapidly replaced with ‘contact centers’ that can also handle email and chat communications.  Customers want more options for interacting with companies they buy products and services from.  Chat requires the customer to be at a computer and though email may be sent from a mobile phone, generally the sender is at a desktop.    In a wireless world in which every man, woman and child seems to wonder around with a ‘text’  or sms enabled device on their person, does it not make sense that they would want to text your call center?

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ShoreTel User Training Options!

February 10, 2015 2:07 PM | 0 Comments

Phone Training is a double edged sword.   Everyone wants it  but nobody really wants to make the time commitment required to get comfortable with the new phone features that a system like ShoreTel brings to your  business.   Most folks figure it is a phone, how complex can it be?   That is true, ShoreTel phone are easy to manipulate and most features are intuitive.  

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With the release of ShoreTel Version 4.2 the company introduced the concept of virtual appliances. These software objects, had the potential of replacing the Orange ShorGear hardward boxes that typically characterize a ShoreTel deployment. The wisdom of trading the power of dedicated hardware based digital signal processing chips for the variable power of a shared computing resource aside, there are any number of advantages to using “virtual machines”. Currently ShoreTel supports Vmware ESXi and Hyper-V, so we thought we would push the envelop and try alternatives, for example Oricales Virtualbox and Vmware’s Fusion and Vmware player and see what results we could achieve.

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The Contact Center is being transformed at a rate of change that is beyond the ability of current management strategies to identify and react.   Most contact centers are still using 1990 thinking in a 2020 world!  The adoption rate of Smartphones, customer satisfaction scores through social media,  wide availability of video options, and the mobility of customer demographics are terrorizing your call center and what are you doing about it?  Still routing phone calls based on Area Code?  

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As a standard deployment practice, we at DrVoIP implement SIP trunks as a “fail over” on every system we install.   As reliable as your PRI circuit has been, they do fail from time to time!  In fact, we recently lost 27 PRI’s at a major San Diego Hospital when a carrier ( who’s name will remain anonymous) experienced a fiber cut taking out most of their clients in the region!  Stuff happens!  

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When writing call control scripts for Contact Centers (ShoreTel ECC, CISCO UCCX ) do you really have to start over each time?   Are there really that many differences between contact center applications?    Well, yes and no!  As we continue the search for the killer script, that “holy grail” of scripts which can do it all and never needs to be modified, we turn our attention to the wonderful world of XML!  

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