Call Centers

Sprint Offers Hosted Contact Center App

Sprint has entered the hostedcontact center space, a submarket that is rapidly expanding, with the introduction of an IP-based offering that is powered byAvaya technology.

It is Sprint’s first toll-freeVoIP product, Barry Tishgart, director of product marketing, told CRM Buyer. “We have always supported the largest contact centers with toll free networking.” This application supports most or all of what traditional on-premise contact center applications and equipment can provide, he added.

How It Works

Using the hosted delivery model, the IP-based Sprint MPLS network connects a client’s call centers andremote agents to a Sprint data center, which is powered by Avaya IP telephony, its MultiVantage contact center applications, and Avaya media servers.

“There are only minimal requirements on the part of the client to get up and running,” Tishgart said. “Really, all you need is an Internet connection and a laptop.”

Optional features in the offering include advanced CTI (computer telephony integration); multichannel support including fax, e-mail and self-service support; business telephony extensions and voice mail; call recording and quality monitoring; and predictive dialers.

Typical Drivers

The Sprint customers requesting this product are doing so for the usual drivers behind hosted software deployment, according to Susan Winter, product marketing manager.

“The reasons range from the need for greater flexibility, to disaster recovery planning, to the desire to leverage the cost savings,” she told CRM Buyer.

Disaster recovery, in particular, is a key concern, she added. “A contact center operation in an area affected by a hurricane could be down for weeks. With this model, companies have some diversity in their operations. If one of the hosted sites were to be affected, for instance, traffic could easily be shifted to another site.”

Other reasons a firm could have to opt for a hosted contact center application, Tishgart explained, include changing business processes around the contact center operation that can include new business lines, products or markets. Many users, for example, are firms that have traditional contact center operations in place but want to supplement them. “We are working with several traditional travel and insurance-type firms to help them grow their operations,” Tishgart said.

Expanding Partnership

This Sprint Hosted Contact Center solution is the most recent offering developed in conjunction with Avaya. The two firms have also partnered to provide Sprint Hosted Messaging.

Features in this product include business-class voice mail or unified messaging for voice, fax and e-mail integration; wireless integration; and managed services support.

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