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Harcourt Assessment's Ordinate Corp. and TeleDevelopment Services, Inc. Win Technovation Award from the American Teleservices Association.

SAN ANTONIO -- Award Recognizes Innovation of Ordinate(R) Speech Processing Technology and Versant(TM) for English Spoken Language Test

Ordinate Corp., a wholly owned subsidiary of leading test developer and publisher Harcourt Assessment, Inc., has won a Technovation Award from the American Teleservices Association (ATA). The association represents the call centers, trainers, consultants and equipment suppliers that initiate, facilitate and generate telephone, Internet and e-mail sales, service and support, and is recognized as the premier advocate for the call center business.

According to the ATA, the Technovation Awards were introduced to recognize new technologies, processes and applications that are helping marketers and call center managers perform smarter, better and more efficiently.

The Technovation Award was presented jointly to Ordinate Corp. and TeleDevelopment Services Inc., an international recruiting, training and consulting firm, for their adaptation of Ordinate's Versant(TM) for English spoken language test to the call center industry in the Philippines.

The Technovation Award recognizes Ordinate and TeleDevelopment for their commitment to the call center industry internationally, as well as their commitment to providing quality service. The award also recognizes technological advances that benefit ATA member companies, such as TeleDevelopment, as well as consumers.

Call centers and business process outsourcing (BPO) are booming industries in the Philippines and other countries around the world, and employees must have solid English speaking abilities to provide superior customer service. With Versant for English, the spoken English proficiency of job applicants can now be measured in a quick, cost-efficient and standardized way.

The Versant solution evaluates an individual's ability to understand spoken language on everyday topics and to respond appropriately at a native-like conversational pace. It provides companies the ability to address critical success factors for customer service satisfaction, such as:

--Agents are understood by customers

--Agents understand customers

--Agents have consistent language proficiency levels

--Quality agents are identified objectively

TeleDevelopment bundles Versant for English with other language training and development services under the brand name ProSpeak (Professional Spoken English Assessment Kit) in the Philippines.

Jon Kaplan, president of TeleDevelopment Services, said: "I feel honored that the association that represents our industry recognizes the technological advances that move our industry forward and I am happy to be a 2005 recipient of the Technovation Award. Our ProSpeak product will help revolutionize the offshore industry to better recruit talented English speaking agents."

Jared Bernstein, president of Ordinate Corp., said, "We are delighted to receive the Technovation Award, which is truly a validation of the pioneering work we have done in the field of speech processing technology for the past decade. Our Versant for English spoken language test is the perfect solution to help the call center industry recruit the very best talent."

Versant for English, Versant for Spanish and other Versant spoken language tests are delivered over the telephone in just minutes, so they can be administered anytime and anywhere. Valid and reliable results are provided online, typically within minutes after an examinee completes the test.

Ordinate's patented technology analyzes the linguistic content of spoken utterances and the manner of speaking to determine language proficiency and other speaker characteristics.

About TeleDevelopment Services, Inc.

Founded in 1991, TeleDevelopment Services, Inc. (TDS) is an international recruiting, training and consulting firm specializing in helping companies maximize opportunities in the BPO and contact center industry. TDS provides clients human resource and consulting solutions to optimize their business performance. Contact TDS at 330-659-4441 or visit the company online at www.teledevelopment.com/PH

About Ordinate Corp. and Harcourt Assessment, Inc.

Ordinate Corp., a wholly owned subsidiary of Harcourt Assessment, Inc., was founded in 1996 to develop advanced language testing systems based on new techniques that use speech recognition to score spoken language proficiency. Visit Ordinate online at www.ordinate.com.

Harcourt Assessment is a leading provider of high-quality assessment instruments and testing programs used by educators, psychologists, speech-language pathologists, occupational therapists, human resource professionals, admissions and credentialing professionals, and businesses. The company is a unit of Harcourt Education, which is the global education brand of Reed Elsevier Group plc (NYSE:RUK) (NYSE:ENL) -- a world-leading publisher and information provider operating in the science and medical, legal, education and business-to-business industry sectors. Visit Harcourt Assessment online at www.harcourtassessement.com.
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Jan 23, 2006
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