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Call Centre Phone Systems

A CASE STUDY: A call centre has very specific requirements in terms of functionality and features that make their business needs very different to an average business or standard hybrid phone system solution. We've compiled a case study that highlights these unique differences for call centre phone systems and the solutions provided to address them.

Current Situation Of The Call Centre:

Within the call centre are 15 agents, two of which are supervisors. In addition, there are a further 17 general sales and administration staff in the rest of the company.

Their system they were using was not designed for call centre management, reporting and monitoring- functionalities that you need to run a successful call centre.

The call centre agents dealt with inbound calls from all over Australia, for four different inbound campaigns. Staff were trained to varying degrees across the product range and this caused problems in inbound call prioritisation.

The company also had trouble recruiting good agents and wanted to offer staff the ability to work from home (remotely) and still be connected to the phone system. This would also allow them to throw the net open to a whole new talent pool from a HR perspective.

Management didn't really have a great handle on productivity and decisions were very reactive.

The rest of the company needed help, with the receptionist still taking handwritten messages as well as being overloaded with the volume of calls (outside of the call centre's intake). In short- the company was working in-efficiently and un-effectively and wanted a new communications system that would help improve their way of working.

The brief from the client:

To have a system that:

  • Can optimise staff allocation
  • Give management timely reporting
  • Identify problems as they occurred real time with staff and performance metrics
  • Easy self administration
  • Saves money with VoIP calls
  • Eliminate expensive line rentals with VoIP
  • Ability for staff to work and connect remotely
  • Real time reporting
  • Fits their budget
  • Never misses an incoming sales call
  • Makes them sound more professional
  • Easy finance options

The Call Centre Phone System Solution Implemented:

The best fit was the iPECS UCP 100. It offered them all the functionality they wanted, plus more that they didn't even know they needed! They are absolutely elated with what they are now able to do. Here's how we addressed their issues and solved problems before they even arose.

Different agent skill sets.

The intelligent iPECS UCP 100 software allowed us to rank the six agents based on their skills for each of the 4 products. With different inbound 1300 numbers for each product we now distribute calls based on their skills. For example, when a call comes in for "Product A" the phone system looks at which agents are available. Based on their level of proficiency for selling "Product A" it then sends the caller to the most skilled available agent.

So, we ranked the staff for "Product A" out of 5

  • Sarah 5
  • Paul 5
  • Mark 4
  • Julie 3
  • Troy 3
  • Jessica

Therefore, if John was on the phone the call would go to Paul. If both were unavailable it would go to Mark and so on. This was done for each campaign they service, and ensured that the caller was always speaking to the most appropriate agent.

The iPECS UCP 100 is designed to perform faultlessly with the latest SIP trunking (advanced type of VoIP phone lines). The savings they experienced were phenomenal and the call quality delivered by the iPECS UCP 100 and the SIP trunks is faultless. Furthermore, as staff come and go the iPECS UCP 100 also has incredibly easy to use administration software. The system has customisable Webadmin for simple management. This allows the supervisor to make changes anytime they like for free.

Queue busy announcements

Here we installed the iPECS UCP 100 Auto Attendant that now acts as a backup for each product queue. Previously, if all agents were on calls they were having to stop a call to answer another or they were being missed! This was incredibly ineffective and frustrating for clients. Now the iPECS UCP 100 Auto Attendant answers after 6 rings and says "Thank you for calling Product A, your call is important and we will be with you in just a moment".

This is a different greeting for each product and they no longer miss calls and it sounds incredibly professional. The attendant adapts for Day, Night, On Demand, Weekend, Auto Ring and Forward.

Real time supervision

The iPECS UCP 100 Contact centre allowed us to input the most important measurement parameters. For "Product A" it was customer wait time and average call duration. They set one at 1 minute and the second at 3.5 minutes.

So real time, the supervisors monitor flashes when either of these parameters is breached. For example, if callers are waiting to be answered in the queue for more than 1 minute the screen flashes. The supervisor can then enter the queue himself or he can see why there is congestion. By having the ability to monitor call activity in real time, problems can be fixed before they become critical. This is a basic example of how dynamic and powerful the contact centre application is. Call recording for training

The phone system now also allows call recording. All calls in the call centre are now recorded and stored on a server for easy access any time they want. This has been a fantastic addition and is now used extensively in call handling training. The ability for agents to listen to where their calls went wrong, and compare this to other successful calls has been the most significant change and allows agents to hear for themselves how they sound and how they can improve. (please note that you must let callers know they are being recorded for training purposes)

Live phone call intrusion

Supervisors can now intrude on an agents call without the agent or the customer knowing they are on the line. When they hear a call being handled badly they can hear how the agent resolves the matter. The supervisor is listening to the call live, and so can address the call with the agent directly after it has taken place. If they want they can then retrieve the call from the call recording server and use it to help better train the staff member.

Timely management reporting

We set up the iPECS UCP 100 to automatically generate, and email, a number of reports on a daily and weekly basis. The supervisor gets over 15 different reports daily that we tailored to their needs.

On a weekly basis senior management get emailed the weekly reports automatically on Friday afternoon. There is no room for error, human manipulation or forgetting. This intelligent system saves time and energy by generated these reports itself and making statistical analysis seamless and easy.

Remote workers

The iPECS UCP 100 pbx offers the latest IP technology so having staff connected was easily achieved. The staff that work from home have a VPN IP handset in their homes that connect to the phone system via an IP network. This is secure and the voice quality is superb. The only requirement was that each remote worker must have good internet service available at their respective locations.

The remote staff can now connect to the office and take calls, transfer calls and do everything else as their office bound colleagues. Also, even they are remote, phone calls can still be recorded and supervisors can still monitor their activities real time.

This has been an incredibly positive addition to the company and was achieved with little additional expense. Staff are now able to work from home and they are able to draw from a much wider talent pool with stay at home parents and long distance travellers loving the flexibility it offers them. The mobile extension feature provides seamless communications and ease of use, with calls easily moving back and forth between desk and mobile phone. They have a happier workforce that is less transient.

Cutting costs with VoIP

Although the bulk of calls were inbound on their 1300 numbers, their normal phone call costs were spiralling as they made more calls to client's mobile phones!

The iPECS UCP 100 is designed to perform faultlessly with the latest SIP trunking (advanced type of VoIP phone lines). The savings they experienced were phenomenal and the call quality delivered by the iPECS UCP 100 and the SIP trunks is faultless.

By moving to a SIP 30 service they also saved a fortune in expensive Telstra line rentals. If that wasn't enough, they were also able to cap their charges on an unlimited VoIP plan. This way they know, no matter how many calls they make, exactly how much their new reduced phone bill is each month. The client now actually saves about 4 times as much money each month on their SIP rate plan than the entire solution cost.

Easy Self Administration

One of the greatest strengths of this solution is the fact that you can change most things yourself. The iPECS UCP 100 has multiple levels of administration tools, from an enhanced installation wizard, to remote connection programming and maintenance to embedded system monitoring. This means you can be incredibly flexible, using your desktop, phone or tablet to make changes when you need to be and it won't cost you a cent.

Staff Comfort

Here we installed the latest Sennheiser DW Office Pro 1 cordless headsets with additional noise cancelling. This cut down background noise and the cordless headsets freed them up to move around and grab brochures etc whilst on a call.

Staff taking handwritten messages for each other.

Hand-written notes are very archaic. They can easily become lost, and when they are not lost they are often illegible. So, we installed Voicemail so that customers can now leave messages for staff. This has saved time and money!

Plus because most of the sales staff, (not call centre agents), have smart phones with email access they can now receive any messages in the office via their smartphone with sophisticated voicemail to email technology.

Backup for receptionist during busy times

The iPECS UCP 100 Auto Attendant now also acts as a backup for reception as well as the various products. Much more professional and efficient.

Answering machine after hours

The Auto Attendant now also professionally answers after hours. The system can even answer multiple calls at once and callers leave messages that a nominated staff member listens to every morning.

Sounding more professional

Here we installed Professional Messages On Hold - this capped off the solution and made their business sound fantastic. They now tell callers about all the various products they deal with, allowing them to cross promote their different campaigns when customers were put on hold. Overall, this has been a phenomenal outcome for the customer and delivered to them not only massive productivity and efficiency gains but also savings they could only have dreamt of.

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