Nuasis NuContact Center 3.0.
303 Bryant St.
Mountain View, CA 94041
Not very long ago, call center routing was generally performed with PBXs and ACDs, plus kludgey CTI integration and equally complex integration with other applications. Now that VoIP offers customer interaction centers the ability to move voice over a data network, Nuasis Corp. has introduced a software model that changes the very nature of routing technology. Instead of routing voice over a switch, the Nuasis software sits on standard servers independent of the PBX. The company's newly launched NuContact Center 3.0 solution consolidates legacy ACD, e-mail and Web systems, leveraging SOAP, ODBC/JDBC, SIP, XML, VoiceXML and CTI. NuContact Center 3.0 utilizes standard servers using the Linux operating system and an Oracle back-end database. Because it is software based on open standards with easy interconnectivity between the "application pieces," no CTI hardware or middleware is required. This approach is desirable because it reduces both the complexity and cost of deployment.
With the availability of NuContact Center 3.0 software, agents can be located anywhere in the world, and with higher system scalability. NuContact Center 3.0 supports the use of any phone device (analog, IP phone, PC phone) for remote or home-based agent operations. This capability enables customers to quickly address rapidly changing call center staffing requirements. Customers can deploy agents quickly and simply by downloading the NuContact Center desktop software over the Internet and signing onto the system from any available phone set.
The latest version of the solution supports 5,000 named agents. Up to 1,000 concurrent agents can be logged in to the system, doubling the capacity over the previous release of the solution. NuContact Center 3.0 features a workflow engine (see Figure 1) with a graphical, icon-driven development interface that supports the creation of sophisticated routing algorithms that can factor in business values, call center metrics and customer data to determine best routing decisions.
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Nuasis uses Audiocodes hardware for the voice gateway, loaded onto Dell servers. This can be a set of voice gateway servers at a centralized location or distributed in a hub-and-node fashion for more redundancy, depending on a contact center's needs. Nuasis chose Audiocodes hardware because it enabled them to program some admirable scalability and reliability tricks by loading special software onto the Audiocodes card to provide system reliability as well as call connection and failover functionality. In fact, unlike a standard Cisco or Audiocodes gateway, Nuasis monitors the voice connection and, if an interruption is detected, they are able to hold that call, play a courtesy message and seamlessly re-route the call, along with the already-collected screen-pop customer information, to the next available best-skilled agent.
According to Nuasis, "The NuContact Center has been designed with multiple levels of capabilities to assure system availability in the event of either of these disaster recovery scenarios. Unlike other systems, the NuContact Center includes a patent-pending capability that automatically redirects contacts to other sites in the event of a localized network outage. By design, the NuContact Center has been engineered to deliver 100 percent of calls to live agents in the event of a system or network outage without dropping the contact." (Nuasis and TMC recently teamed to present a Webinar entitled, "A New Look At Disaster Recovery For The Call Center," which may be accessed in the archives at www.tmcnet.com/274.1).
NuContact Center has an impressive set of built-in features, including various call recording methods-on-demand recording, emergency recording, workflow-based Nth call recording, 100 percent recording of all calls, and more. It also features an auto-attendant and IVR prompting with digit collection, playback and database access. Users have the ability to monitor voice and Web collaboration sessions, and can coach agents during those sessions. The ability to "barge in" to an existing voice or Web collaboration session is also available. Call center supervisors are provided with a full set of management features available for monitoring remote agents, viewing real-time statistics and reporting on remote agent status and performance.
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Nuasis provides tight integration with all the major CRM players, and offers users the ability to screen pop their CRM application window directly beneath the NuContact Desktop Manager, which is NuContact Center's main call center agent interface for taking calls, e-mail and collaboration sessions; viewing statistics, and more (see Figure 2). When the call ends, the CRM application will automatically minimize. Nuasis calls this their "Shutters" windowing feature, and it will also automatically open and minimize any desktop application required for the call. For instance, if an agent is working in e-mail and an incoming call arrives, the application will automatically minimize the e-mail window and bring the call to the forefront along with the CRM application, sized perfectly to the same window configuration as the NuContact Desktop Manager.
One really powerful feature included with NuContact Center 3.0 is the solution's ability to define business rules that affect a center's call handling. For instance, as shown in Figure 3, NuContact Center allows users to apply weighted values to various business parameters such as media type (e-mail, fax, chat, phone), time the caller is in queue, service-level objective, and the business value or importance of the customer. As a result, users can adjust the weighting of the business values on-the-fly so that higher-tier customers effectively "jump" ahead in the queue. These quick adjustments can be done without changing routing workflows.
The platform features extensive system logs for tracking customer and agent activities, outstanding callbacks, etc. In a similar manner, it features "cradle-to-grave" Web-based report publishing which leverages Crystal Web Author for the publication of customized reports. The Nuasis NuContact Center 3.0 has an impressive array of features that marries the best of the call center world (ACD, IVR, CTI, skills-based routing) with the best of the VoIP world (IP phones, soft phones, remote IP agent capabilities, multimedia, multi-site networking and conditional routing based on real-time analytics). This combination, along with support for industry standards, is the true power behind Nuasis NuContact Center, and it will enable this platform to evolve and add more powerful functionality with tight integration to both business processes and agent productivity.
By Tom Keating, CTO and Executive Technology Editor, TMC
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|Publication:||Customer Interaction Solutions|
|Date:||Apr 1, 2006|
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