New contact centre overcomes integration

New contact centres usually face several hurdles before they can open for business. It’s no different for Multi Channel Communications Inc. (MCCI), a Canadian contact centre that services mainly U.S.-based telecommunication companies.

One challenge that kept Adam Sudol, MCCI’s IT director, up at night was finding a way for MCCI’s phone system to talk easily with its clients’ phone systems.

Sudol said MCCI had two options. “We [could] go with a solution that [would] integrate smoothly and not cause us any problems down the road or we [could] go with a different solution from another vendor we [could] modify and force it to work.” But the second option just didn’t cut it, he said.

MCCI chose to implement Avaya call centre solutions since the contact centre’s clients were already using them. The vendor’s MultiVantage Communications Application (MCA) allowed MCCI to view where calls were coming from. MCCI was also able to integrate the MCA with its own system that controls where the calls flow so the system could automatically determine whether it could accept additional calls.

Sudol said MCCI considered other vendors who insisted they could integrate their solutions with MCCI’s clients’ technology. But after further investigation, he found it would take too much time and effort to make the integration work.

“If their calls are not being answered successfully, [our clients’] customers start getting upset about it. Ultimately we are the ones who look bad,” Sudol said.

Another headache for Sudol was setting up MCCI’s telecommunications infrastructure at its Belleville, Ont., location, which opened last year.

“I physically need to have connections from Belleville, which is in the middle of nowhere, to wherever our clients are in the U.S.,” he said.

This past May, MCCI launched a second location in Peterborough, Ont. Having the Avaya solution in place enabled MCCI to purchase telephone lines in bulk.

Both contact centres are managed by Avaya’s S8700 media server, a pair of servers directly linked to one another. If a failure occurs, they fail over to the back-up server without losing any calls.

The MCA helped the server deal with calls from standard telephone services through analogue or digital lines, as well as IP telephony (which also runs between the two centres). The combination of the MCA and the media server allowed MCCI’s clients to customize how the server handled calls when they hit the switch and route them accordingly.

Avaya also provided MCCI with its customer interaction suite. According to the vendor, this suite provides contact centres with contact management services, self-service capabilities, proactive contact and operational effectiveness.

Currently MCCI is using contact management services, which have allowed the call centre and its clients to monitor the status of reports, the volume of calls and how they are handled, as well as service levels.

MCCI has also implemented the operational effectiveness portion of the suite, which has enabled the firm to record statistics on how many and what types of calls are coming in, and who is calling.