Cisco Unified CCX Administration Guide, Release 9.0(1)
Unified CCX outbound dialer configuration
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Contents

Unified CCX outbound dialer configuration

The Unified CCX Outbound Dialer feature, available in the Unified CM version of the Unified CCX product, is bundled along with the Unified CCX Premium license package. This chapter provides conceptual, installation, and configuration information about the Unified CCX Outbound application.

When you upload the Premium license, the Outbound subsystem will automatically appear in the Subsystems menu. With this feature, you can maintain high agent productivity by configuring contact centers for automated Outbound activities and allow agents who are not busy with inbound calls to perform Outbound calls.

Unified CCX outbound IVR dialer types

In addition to the existing preview outbound dialer option, Unified CCX Release supports IVR-based dialing. You can configure a campaign as an Outbound IVR campaign if you have an Outbound IVR license in addition to the existing Unified CCX Premium license. If you select the IVR based option for a campaign, the outbound calls will be handled by the IVR scripts. Typical applications include appointment and bill payment reminders.

You can choose any one of the following dialer types for an IVR-based campaign:

  • Progressive
  • Predictive

Predictive/Progressive Dialer is developed to leverage call control and Answering Machine Detection (AMD) capability of SIP Gateway Interface to perform dialing, call control, and Call Progress Analysis for Outbound campaigns. This offloads call control off the Unified CM since the calls that need not be treated by an agent or an IVR such as no answers, busy tones, and so on are not sent to Unified CM.

You can procure Unified CCX Outbound IVR license based on the IVR ports that you want to use for an Outbound IVR campaign. You need to upload an additional license for Outbound IVR feature. The Outbound IVR feature will not be available with Premium license of Unified CCX (see Unified CCX requirements).


Note


The Outbound feature is not supported in the following Unified CCX packages:
  • Unified CCX Standard version
  • Unified CCX Enhanced version
  • Unified IP IVR

Outbound feature for Unified CCX

The Outbound feature provides Outbound dialing functionality in addition to existing Unified CCX inbound capabilities. This feature allows agents who are not busy with inbound calls to handle Outbound calls.

With the Outbound feature, customer calls are placed using the Cisco Unified Communications by way of the Unified CM for call control.

Outbound characteristics

The Outbound feature includes the following characteristics:

  • An Outbound subsystem that can be monitored from the control center
  • Dialing modes - Direct preview, Predictive, and Progressive
  • Unified CCX Administration web pages to configure the Outbound feature
  • Outbound historical reports
  • Real-Time reports are part of the Unified CCX Administration GUI real-time reporting applet

    Note


    Calls made by the Outbound subsystem will not be displayed in the Contacts Summary Real-Time Report.


  • Access to real-time Outbound data from the GetReportingStatistics step
  • Cisco Agent Desktop allows agents to handle Outbound calls
  • Sequential dialing

Unified CCX requirements

To use the Outbound feature, you must adhere to the following requirements:

Unified CCX licensing requirements

The licensing requirements for Outbound feature in Unified CCX will vary depending on the dialing modes.

  • For Unified CCX Outbound Direct Preview Dialer: The Unified CCX Outbound Direct Preview Dialer feature is automatically available with Premium license package without any additional license. It is no longer available with Enhanced license.
  • For Unified CCX Outbound IVR Dialer: You need to upload an Outbound IVR license on top of the Unified CCX premium license with the required number of IVR ports that you would like to use for the Outbound IVR feature.

Note


The sum of inbound and outbound IVR ports should be less than or equal to a maximum number of IVR ports supported for your hardware model.


Once you obtain the Outbound IVR license for a specific number of ports, the IVR ports will be distributed between the inbound and outbound IVR calls using the following approach based on the different scenarios explained below.

You can view the licensed IVR ports for outbound and inbound and the dedicated ports for both outbound and inbound calls by navigating to System > License Information > Display License(s) submenu from the Unified CCX Administration menu bar.

Scenario 1:

If your Contact Center is already utilizing maximum licensed IVR ports supported for your hardware model, then:
  • Inbound calls will take precedence over the configured Outbound IVR calls.
  • If IVR ports are dedicated for a campaign, then the Outbound IVR ports available for the campaign will be gradually incremented as and when the inbound ports become free.

For example, if you have an MCS 7845 hardware that supports maximum of 300 IVR ports and if you have 200 premium seats, then the current licensed IVR ports = 300 (Minimum of [seats*2, maximum supported for platform]).

In this case, if you upload an Outbound IVR add-on license for 100 IVR ports and add 3 campaigns with 20 dedicated ports each running at the same time, then the 60 Outbound IVR ports will be available to the campaigns only when the number of inbound ports are freed up to support the Outbound IVR calls.

In other words, if the number of inbound ports that are used during the outbound IVR campaign time is 280, then only 20 Outbound IVR ports will be available to the campaigns. The number of Outbound IVR ports will be gradually incremented depending on the availability of free inbound ports.

Scenario 2:

If your Contact Center is close to utilizing the maximum IVR ports supported for your hardware model, then:

  • Inbound calls will take precedence over the configured Outbound IVR calls.
  • If IVR ports are dedicated for a campaign and if you reach the maximum inbound call limit, then the Outbound IVR ports available for the campaign will be gradually incremented as and when the inbound ports become free.

For example, if you have an MCS 7845 hardware that supports a maximum of 300 IVR ports and if you have 130 premium seats, then the current licensed IVR ports = 260 (Minimum of [seats*2, max supported for platform]).

In this case, if you upload an Outbound IVR add-on license for 50 IVR ports and add 2 campaigns with 25 dedicated ports each running at the same time and if you reach the inbound call limit of 260 during the outbound IVR campaign time, then only 40 ports (300-260) will be freed up initially for Outbound IVR calls. The number of Outbound IVR ports will be gradually incremented depending on the availability of free inbound ports.

Scenario 3:

If your Contact Center is using fewer ports than the maximum licensed ports supported for your hardware model, then the number of available IVR ports for inbound will continue to remain the same.

For example, if you have an MCS 7845 hardware that supports maximum of 300 IVR ports and if you have 60 premium seats, then the current licensed IVR ports = 120 (Minimum of [seats*2, max supported for platform]).

In this case if you upload an Outbound IVR add-on license for 50 IVR Outbound ports, and add 2 campaigns with 20 dedicated ports each running at the same time, then Unified CCX will support 40 IVR Outbound calls, and the inbound port limit will continue to be 120 as the sum of both inbound and outbound ports (160) are within the maximum licensed ports (300) for the platform.

Unified CCX subsystem requirements

  • The Outbound subsystem must be IN SERVICE.
  • The RmCm subsystem must be IN SERVICE.
  • The Unified CM Telephony subsystem must be IN SERVICE.
  • The Unified CCX Database must be IN SERVICE.
  • IBM Informix Dynamic Server.

Geographic region support

  • The Outbound feature can be used in any geographic region supported by Unified CCX. The area codes and time zones mapping for North America are automatically pre-populated in the system. The system uses this information to determine the time zone of a customer’s phone number.
  • For regions outside North America, administrators must enter the mapping of the international area codes and their time zones using the Unified CCX Administration GUI.
  • The national do_not_call list is not supported in this release. Be sure to abide by the national do_not_call list.

Note


In this guide, the underscore character linking each word differentiates the national do_not_call list from the Outbound subsystem's Do Not Call list.


Related Information

Outbound components

This section provides details about the following Outbound feature components:

  • Unified CCX Administration: Enables the Outbound subsystem configuration, creates campaigns, and imports contacts to generate the dialing list.
  • Outbound subsystem: Is responsible for the following tasks:
    • Manages campaigns
    • Maintains Outbound system configurations
    • Manages the dialing list
    • Reserves agents
    • Makes Outbound calls
    • Updates the call data in the dialing list based on the outcome of the call
    • Decides which contact records to retrieve from a campaign

The Outbound subsystem views campaigns as logical entities that group a set of contacts together in a dialing list. Campaigns deliver outgoing calls to agents. Agents are assigned to campaigns using CSQs.

Supported dialing modes

The Outbound feature in Unified CCX Release supports the following dialing modes:

  • Direct preview dialing mode
  • Progressive dialing mode
  • Predictive dialing mode

This new option in the Outbound Dialer allows agents who are not busy with inbound calls to handle outbound calls, thus maintaining high level of agent productivity.


Note


In Unified CCX, progressive and predictive dialers will be only used for IVR-based campaigns and not for Agent-based campaigns. In other words, the agents cannot preview the contact information on their desktops while using Predictive and Progressive dialing modes in Unified CCX.


Direct preview dialing mode

The direct preview dialing mode allows agents to preview a customer call on CAD before the call is placed. The advantage of this mode is that an agent is already on the call when the customer answers and can quickly begin talking with the customer immediately.

The Outbound subsystem presents the agent with a popup window, displaying the customer information prior to placing the Outbound call. The agent has the choice of accepting the call or ignoring it. The Outbound subsystem dials the customer only if the agent accepts the call.

If the agent accepts the call in this mode, the Outbound call is initiated from the agent's phone. Since the call is initiated from the agent's phone, the agent can hear the customer's phone ring and also hear other tones, such as a busy signal.


Tip


You must explicitly disable the Call Waiting option on the agent's phone to successfully use this feature. The Call Waiting option must be disabled (default) in Unified CM on each Outbound agent phone to ensure that every customer call successfully transfers to an available agent.


When an Outbound call is transferred or conferenced to another agent, the second/subsequent agents are not counted towards the number of Outbound licenses. For example, if you have five seats licensed for Outbound and Agent1 gets an Outbound call, Agent1 accepts the call and conferences in Agent2 and Agent3. Now, three agents are on one Outbound call but only Agent1 is considered an Outbound agent and you are only using one licensed seat. Consequently, your system allows four more Outbound calls to agents.


Caution


When Agent A transfers an Outbound call to Agent B, all Preview Outbound option buttons are enabled on Agent B's desktop. Despite all buttons being enabled, Agent B must only select the Do Not Call or the callback buttons at this time.

Likewise, after transferring the call to Agent B, Agent A should not attempt to set or change a callback time for that call.


Progressive dialing mode

Progressive dialer configuration is set for each campaign at the time of creating a campaign and can be updated at a later point.

In the Progressive Dialing mode, you can specify a fixed number of lines that will always be dialed per available IVR port. You can configure the progressive dialer settings for each campaign while creating the campaign through Unified CCX Application Administration web interface. You can also update the configuration at a later date.

For example, in Progressive dialer if Number of Lines Per Port is 3 and X number of dedicated ports are available for Outbound calls, then the Outbound IVR dialer will dial 3X IVR calls (3*X). Depending on the number of calls that are getting abandoned due to the shortage of dedicated ports which may occur, you might have to adjust the lines per port manually to make the calls efficiently.

An abandoned call occurs when a customer answers the phone, but no port is available to play the prompts to the customer. In some cases, the abandoned call rate is limited by government regulations (typically, less than 3% for telemarketing calls).

Related Tasks

Functions of IVR-based progressive campaign

The outbound subsystem does the following in an IVR-based Progressive campaign of Unified CCX.

Procedure
    Step 1   The outbound subsystem checks the licensing information to determine the number of available ports for the campaign.
    Step 2   Then the outbound dialer will multiply the available ports for the campaign with the configured number of lines per port. Based on this output and the number of contacts, it will start dialing the contacts. For instance, if 50 ports are available for a campaign and if you have configured the lines per port as 2 through Unified CCX Application Administration web interface, then it can dial 100 contacts.
    Step 3   The SIP gateway performs call progressive analysis of the call and informs the outcome of the call to Unified CCX. The outcome of a call can be any of the following:
    1. All the dialed contacts, which turns out to be live voice, will be connected to the CTI port, which plays the IVR script and will disconnect the remaining calls.

      If the dialer detects more contacts with live voice than the available ports, then the dialer will drop those extra calls and consider then as abandoned calls. If the dialer detects less contacts with live voice, then the dialer will connect those calls to the CTI port that plays the IVR script, and the remaining CTI ports will be freed.

    2. If the dialer detects an answering machine, then it performs either of the following, depending on the option selected in the Answering Machine Treatment field in the Campaign Configuration web page:
      • Connects to the CTI port that plays the IVR script
      • Abandons the call
    3. If the dialer detects a fax or modem, then the dialer abandons the call.
    4. If the dialer detects a call as low volume, then it performs either of the following, depending on the options selected in the Handle Low Volume as Voice field in the Campaign Configuration web page:
      • If you have selected the Yes radio button in the Handle Low Volume as Voice field, then the dialer considers the call as live voice and connects the call to the CTI port that plays the IVR script.
      • If you have selected the No radio button in the Handle Low Volume as Voice field, then low volume calls are not handled as voice and they are abandoned.

    Predictive dialing mode

    The Predictive Dialing mode works similar to the Progressive Dialing mode in terms of dialing the Outbound IVR calls. The difference remains in tuning the lines per port depending on the abandoned call-rate thus eliminating manual intervention as in the case of the Progressive Dialer.

    In other words, in the Predictive Dialing mode, the Dialer adjusts the number of customers to dial per available IVR port for transfer to an IVR campaign. The number of lines to dial is calculated by an algorithm and gets updated automatically.

    A Predictive Dialer is designed to increase IVR port utilization in a contact center. To increase the chances of reaching a customer, a Predictive Dialer dials several outbound calls to customers per available IVR port. The goal is to dial enough lines to keep the IVR ports busy while not exceeding the configured maximum abandoned call rate.

    Predictive dialing description

    The Outbound IVR feature in predictive dialing works by keeping outbound dialing at a level where the abandoned rate is below the maximum allowed abandon rate. For example, each campaign is configured with a maximum allowed abandon rate. In Predictive mode, the Dialer continuously increments the number of lines being dialed per port until the abandon rate rises to the preconfigured maximum abandon rate. At this point, the Dialer begins lowering the lines per port until the abandon rate goes below the preconfigured maximum. In this way, the Dialer stays just below the preconfigured maximum abandon rate.

    Under ideal circumstances, the Dialer internally targets an abandon rate of 85% of the preconfigured maximum abandon rate. Due to the random nature of outbound dialing, the actual attainable abandon rate at any given point in time may vary for your Dialer.

    When a campaign starts for the first time, the predictive algorithm starts off with the seed value of Lines Per Port configured through the AppAdmin web interface. The predictive algorithm starts correcting the Lines Per Port value only when the number of calls answered by live voice reaches the value defined by the Predictive Correction Pace.

    Consecutive corrections happen after the Predictive Correction Pace is divided by 4, the number of live voice calls. The amount of correction given by the predictive algorithm is controlled by the Predictive Gain as well. The correction factor is multiplied by the Predictive Gain and then it is added to the Lines Per Port of the previous iteration.


    Note


    It is advisable not to change the Correction Pace and Predictive Gain values unless there is an urgent need to control the output of the predictive algorithm. For example, in cases where a campaign runs for a very short time and the Lines Per Port needs to be corrected at a faster pace, then you can reduce the Predictive Correction Pace and update the value in the Gain field as 1.0, which is the maximum value.


    If a campaign runs for multiple days, when the campaign starts up, the predictive algorithm starts off with the Lines Per Port value from the previous day instead of the seed value in the AppAdmin web interface, so that better correction is achieved within a given time.

    Configure outbound IVR subsystem in Unified CCX

    The following identifies the tasks that you need to perform while configuring an Outbound IVR subsystem in Unified CCX.

    Procedure
      Step 1   Install Unified CCX with Unified CM and perform the initial system setup using the Cisco Unified CCX Administration web interface.

      See Installation Guide for Cisco Unified CCX and Cisco Unified IP IVR, Release 9.0(1)

      Step 2   Verify whether you have performed the requirements listed in Unified CCX requirements.
      Note   

      You need to have Unified CCX Outbound IVR license on top of Unified CCX premium license to use the Outbound IVR feature

      Step 3   Configure the General Outbound properties that are common for all the campaigns.
      Step 4   To enable communication between Unified CCX and SIP gateway, configure the SIP Gateway parameters using the SIP Gateway Configuration web page in Unified CCX Application Administration web interface.
      Step 5   Create a Call Control Group for Outbound type with the required number of IVR ports to be used for Outbound IVR campaigns.
      Step 6   Create an application, which will be used for the Outbound IVR campaign.
      Step 7   Create a trigger and assign the newly created Outbound Call Control group to this trigger.
      Step 8   Create a new IVR campaign and configure the progressive dialer parameters for this campaign.
      Step 9   Import contact for the campaign.

      IVR subsystem time detection

      The Outbound subsystem uses the area code of a contact's phone number to determine the time zone of the contact's calling area. The subsystem provides the mapping for North American area codes to their corresponding time zones. The Area Codes web page allows you to add, modify, and delete any area-code-to-time-zone mapping.

      Some area codes extend across multiple time zones. For such area codes, you can edit the default time zone for that area code and specify a different one, if required.

      Changes to area codes take affect the next time you import contacts. For example, if the time zone of area code 603 is changed from 16 to 17, contacts already present in the system that have an area code of 603 continue to have the GMT Offset of 16. Any contacts with area code 603 that are imported after the area code change have 17 for the GMT Offset.

      When Outbound contacts are imported into the database, all contacts are assigned a GMT time zone for the three phone numbers provided. The Outbound subsystem determines this GMT time zone by extracting the area code of each phone number and checking it against the Area Codes table to obtain the corresponding time zone. If the area code cannot be matched, the Outbound subsystem uses the local time zone and Daylight Savings Time (DST) setting of the server. The Outbound subsystem also considers the DST to determine if an Outbound contact can be called at a given time.

      The Outbound subsystem ensures that the contacts are dialed at valid times. For Outbound contacts which have been scheduled for callback, the scheduled callback time is converted to GMT time zone and stored in the callbackDateTime field in the database.

      For pending records, the Outbound subsystem ensures that Outbound contacts are called only within the Customer Dialing Time Range (hh:mm) detected by the MinCustomerDialTime and MaxCustomerDialTime, as per federal regulations. You can configure this time in the Unified CCX Administration GUI.

      Configure Outbound subsystem

      To configure the Outbound subsystem, complete the following tasks:

      Procedure
        Step 1   Provision the RmCM and CSQs.
        1. Configure RmCM.
        2. Create CSQs.
        3. Assign resources to CSQ.
        Step 2   Verify that the RmCm and Outbound subsystems are IN SERVICE.
        Step 3   Configure the general properties of the Outbound subsystem.
        1. Configure customer dialing time range as determined by the regulations of the required region
        2. Configure the dialing prefixes for your geographic area.
        3. Assign the CSQs and % of Logged in Agents for Outbound.
        Step 4   Create campaigns.
        Step 5   Import contacts for each campaign.
        Step 6   Enable campaigns.
        Step 7   If the dialing list contains contacts outside of North America or if Unified CCX is installed outside of North America, manually add the area codes and their corresponding time zones of the regions.
        Step 8   Enable direct preview in CDA.
        Step 9   Set up communication with agent desktop.
        Step 10   Agents log in and get ready to receive Outbound calls (agents must belong to CSQs assigned to Outbound).

        Related Information

        RmCm and Outbound subsystem verification

        The Outbound subsystem's initial state is OUT OF SERVICE. Next, it goes to INITIALIZING state, at which point it checks the conditions listed below. If all the conditions are met, the state changes to IN SERVICE.

        For the Outbound subsystem to be IN SERVICE, the following conditions apply:

        • The RmCm subsystem on the same box must also be in service. The RmCm subsystem is considered to be active when you have provisioned the RmCm Provider and itsassociated agent extensions.
        • The Unified CCX Database service (on the publisher node) should be up and running. For example, if you have a dual node (Node A and B) setup with Node A as the publisher node, you need to have the Unified CCX Database service up and running on Node A for the Outbound subsystem to be IN SERVICE.

        Note


        The publisher node will always be the first node installed in the cluster.


        On the standby service, if all four nodes are up and running and RmCM is in service, then the Outbound subsystem is IN SERVICE.


        Tip


        During a fail over, it might take a couple of minutes before the Outbound subsystem displays the correct state (IN SERVICE) as the verification cycle needs to complete.


        Configure general outbound properties

        General Outbound properties refer to the settings information that is common for all the campaigns.


        Caution


        Area code and long distance prefix configuration changes made to the Outbound subsystem do not take effect for calls/contacts currently in the Outbound subsystem’s memory. For example, if you change the long distance prefix or local area code, the contacts already in the Outbound subsystem's memory will continue to use the old long distance prefix and local area code.


        To configure general Outbound properties, complete the following steps.

        Procedure
          Step 1   From the Unified CCX Administration menu bar, choose Subsystems > Outbound > General.

          The General Configuration web page opens to display the General pane (default view).

          Step 2   Specify the following fields in the General Configuration section:

          Field

          Description

          Customer Dialing Time Range (hh:mm)

          The time range during which a customer can be called. This time range supersedes the time range of individual campaigns and ensures that a customer is never called outside the legally allowed time range for that country. This is a mandatory field.

          For example, in the USA, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) specifies the legal time range as 8 AM – 9 PM. This does not apply to callbacks since the customer explicitly requested to be called at a certain time. This time range is always converted to the local time for each contact record.

          Default = 8:00 AM - 9:00 PM (USA FCC regulations)

          Preview Call Timeout

          If an agent does not respond to the Outbound preview call on the Cisco Agent Desktop (CAD) within the timeout duration specified in this field, the system sets the agent to the Not Ready state, similar to the behavior for Ring No Answer (RNA) for inbound calls. This is a mandatory field.

          Default= 60 seconds, Range = 5 to 3600 seconds.

          Dialing Prefix

          The number to pre-pend to the phone number for dialing outgoing calls (also referred to as switch prefix). This number can have any numeric value, including 0 or leading zeros.

          Long Distance Prefix

          The number to pre-pend to the phone number for dialing long distance. This number can have any numeric value, including 0 or leading zeros.

          International Prefix

          The number to pre-pend to international phone numbers. This number can have any numeric value, including 0 or leading zeros.

          Local Area Code

          The area code of the Unified CCX server location. This number can have any numeric value, including 0 or leading zeros.

          Do Not Remove Local Area Code When Dialing

          If this box is checked, the local area code is included when dialing the phone numbers within this area code. If it is unchecked, then the local area code is stripped from the phone number before dialing the local numbers. It is expected that when contacts are imported into the system, the phone numbers include the area code. For international phone numbers, the country code must be included when importing contacts.

          Include Long Distance Prefix

          This field will be displayed only if you select the Do Not Remove Local Area Code When Dialing check box. For local numbers, the long distance prefix will be prepended only if this checkbox is checked.

          The long distance prefix will be prepended to the phone number for all non-local numbers (the numbers that do not start with local area code) irrespective of the status (checked/unchecked) of this checkbox.

          Assigned CSQs

          Assigned CSQs refer to CSQs used by the Outbound subsystem. To allocate CSQs for Outbound, select a CSQ from the Assigned CSQ list, and then select a value from the % of Logged in Agents for Outbound drop-down to indicate what percentage of the CSQ is allocated for Outbound and then click "<" icon. At this point, the selected CSQ is removed from the Available CSQs box and shows up in the Assigned CSQs box with the percentage allocation in parentheses next to the CSQ name. This is a mandatory field.

          Available CSQs

          The Available CSQs pane displays all CSQs configured in the CSQ Configuration page under the RmCm subsystem configuration.

          % of Logged in Agents for Outbound

          The % of Logged in Agents for Outbound field indicates the percentage of logged in agents in each of the selected CSQs that are allocated for handling Outbound calls.

          Note   

          The CSQ allocation percentage is defined at the global level and not at a campaign level. For example, if a CSQ has 100 agents and 20% are allocated for Outbound, a pool of 20 agents are shared among the Outbound campaigns. In the Add New Campaign web page, you can specify the CSQs to assign to a campaign.

          Step 3   Click Update icon that displays in the tool bar in the upper, left corner of the window or the Update button that displays at the bottom of the window.

          The System Options components are now updated.


          Callbacks

          A customer can request a callback at a specific callback phone number and also specify the time/date of the callback. The Outbound subsystem stores this information (the callback phone number, date, time) in the dialing list table.

          The Outbound subsystem handles the callback as follows:

          • Convert to GMT: The callback date and time specified with respect to the customer's time zone is converted to GMT time zone and then stored in the database.
          • Agent not Available: When the Outbound subsystem looks up the database for contacts, it first checks the callbacks. The default callback time limit is 15 minutes (can be changed) before and after the customer-specified time. If an agent is available, then the Outbound subsystem places the callback. If an agent is not available, the Outbound subsystem retries agent availability (agent state) after 10 minutes.
          • Missed Callbacks: If a callback is missed, you have three action options:
            • Reschedule it to the same time on the next business day
            • Mark it as another retry (the callback phone number is removed and the callback date time is ignored). In this case, it moves out of the call back state and into the retry state.
            • Close the record (never dialed again). The selected status is changed at midnight for calls not retrieved.
          • Agent reclassifications: If calls were retrieved and presented to the agent and if the agent reclassified it (for example, changed it to answering machine status), then the call status is updated to the answering machine.
          • Invalid number: If the number is invalid, the callback continues to be retried until the callback time limit expires or the agent reaches the customer.

          Caution


          If a callback is presented and the callback number is invalid (or busy), the callback continues to be retried irrespective of the number of retries set (for normal busy/invalid). It will be retried until the callback time limit expires.


          Outbound area code functionality

          In the Outbound option, the area code determines the geographical location of the phone number you dial, which correspondingly provides the Greenwich Meridian Time (GMT) zone. The db_cra database contains a mapping of the area codes to the time zones.

          The U.S. area code mappings are provided along with the product. International customers should provide their own data and add it to the database.

          Configuration updates

          Whenever Outbound parameters are modified in the Unified CCX Administration GUI, the changes take effect immediately. If a new CSQ is added using the Subsystems > RmCm > Contact Service Queues menu option, it is instantly displayed in the list of available CSQs in the General configuration page in the Unified CCX Administration GUI, as this list is dynamically updated. If a CSQ is modified and if this impacts the allocation of agents, the Outbound subsystem is aware of this change as it refreshes the list of agents in each relevant CSQ periodically.

          • If a configuration change affects the Outbound contacts dialing process (for example, if a campaign is disabled or a CSQ is removed from a campaign), the Outbound subsystem stops processing the Outbound contacts, recalls these contacts to the database, and resets the call status to Pending.
          • If a campaign start time is changed, the Outbound subsystem checks if the campaign is enabled. If it is enabled, and if the new start time is after the current time, it performs the following actions:
            • Sends a recall contact message to the Outbound subsystem passing the campaign ID.
            • For all Outbound contacts for this campaign in the Outbound subsystem's memory, it resets all Outbound contacts to the Pending state and clears them from memory.
            If the campaign is disabled or if the new start time is before the current time, the Outbound subsystem ignores this change.
          • If campaign end time is changed, the Outbound subsystem checks if the campaign is enabled. If it is enabled, and if the new end time is before the current time, it performs the following actions:
            • Sends a recall contact message to the Outbound subsystem passing the campaign ID.
            • For all the Outbound contacts for this campaign in Outbound subsystem's memory, it resets all the Outbound contacts to the Pending state and clears them from memory.
            If the campaign is disabled or if the new end time is after the current time, the Outbound subsystem ignores this change.
          • If a CSQ is deleted from a campaign or if the CSQ itself is deleted, the Outbound subsystem sends a recall contacts message with the csq ID of the deleted CSQ. It also reallocates any Outbound contacts in its memory that are currently allocated to this CSQ among the other existing CSQs for this campaign.

          CSQ agent pool allocation

          You need to specify a percentage of total agents in the assigned CSQs to be allocated for Outbound calls. This pool of agents is shared by all Outbound campaigns.


          Tip


          The CSQs for Outbound are the same as those CSQs for inbound. If you need more CSQs, you must first configure them in Unified CCX and assign the required CSQs for agents as required by your configuration before allocating them as specified in this procedure.


          Add new campaign

          Use the Campaign component to configure properties for the campaign, including the campaign name and description, CSQ selection, and the time range when a campaign can call contacts.

          Complete the following steps to define or modify the settings that apply to a campaign.

          Procedure
            Step 1   From the Unified CCX Administration menu bar, choose Subsystems > Outbound > Campaigns.

            The Campaign web page opens, displaying the details of existing campaigns, if any. Click an existing campaign to view or update the configuration settings for the campaign.

            Step 2   Click Add New icon in the tool bar in the upper, left corner of the window or the Add New button at the bottom of the window.

            Add a New Campaign web page opens up where you can specify the campaign type and the dialer type for the campaign using the following fields.

            Note   

            You need to upload an Outbound IVR license on top of the Premium license for Unified CCX to create a campaign for Outbound IVR.

            Field

            Description

            Select the type of the campaign

            Campaign Type

            Type of the campaign to be used for outbound calls. You can specify any one of the following two campaign types:

            • Agent-based - If you select this, all the outbound calls in a campaign will be handled by the available agents.
            • IVR-based - If you select the IVR-based option, the outbound calls in a campaign will be handled by the IVR scripts.

            Select the type of dialer for the campaign

            Description

            The dialer type options available for a campaign will vary depending on the selected Campaign Type.
            • If you select Agent-based campaign type, then you can select the dialer type:
              • Direct Preview
            • If you select IVR-based campaign type, then you can select any one of the following dialer types:
              • Progressive (default)
              • Predictive
            Note   

            You cannot change the Campaign Type and Dialer Type for an existing campaign.

            After you select the campaign type and dialer type, click Next to continue. The Campaign Configuration web page opens, displaying the following three column headings:

            • Parameter Name
            • Parameter Value
            • Suggested Value

            You can specify values for a new campaign or modify values for an campaign using the fields listed in the Parameter Value column. See the table below for a list of fields along with their description.

            The Suggested Value displays the default configuration value for each campaign. You can refer to these values if you want to revert any changes made to one or more parameters listed in the Campaign Configuration web page.

            Field

            Description

            Campaign Name

            Name of the campaign (must be a unique identifier). This is a mandatory field.

            Enabled

            Indicates to the Outbound subsystem whether this campaign is currently active.

            Default = No

            Description

            Description of the campaign.

            Start Time/End Time (hh:mm) AM PM Time Zone

            Indicate the time range during which the campaign runs. These are mandatory fields. The name of the primary time zone is also displayed adjacent to these two field values.

            Default = 8:00 AM - 9:00 PM Pacific Standard Time (USA FCC regulations).

            Campaign Calling Number

            The campaign calling number is the number that will be displayed to the contact. This number is used by the dialer. This is a mandatory field.

            Application Trigger

            This is the JTAPI trigger associated with this campaign. There will one-to-one mapping between a campaign and an application trigger. Hence, only those triggers that are not associated with any other campaigns are displayed in the trigger list.

            Application Name

            The name of the application associated with the above-mentioned JTAPI trigger. This field is auto-populated.

            Maximum Attempts to Dial Contact

            The maximum number of times the Outbound subsystem attempts to dial a contact beyond which the call status will be marked as closed. You can choose this value from the drop-down list box.

            Default = 3, Range = 1 to 3.

            Callback Time Limit

            The duration before and after the scheduled callback time during which the Outbound subsystem attempts to place a callback. For example, if a callback was scheduled for 9:30 am and if the Callback Time Limit is set to 15 minutes, then the Outbound subsystem calls the customer anytime between 9:15 am to 9:45 am.

            Default = 15 minutes, Range = 1 to 60 minutes.

            Dialing Options (displayed only if you have selected IVR-based campaign type)

            Number of Dedicated Ports

            Number of dedicated IVR ports that you want to reserve for this campaign based on the number of CTI ports available in the outbound call control group for the campaign duration. That is, the total number of dedicated IVR ports for the selected campaign cannot exceed the maximum licensed ports for Outbound IVR minus the sum total of IVR ports dedicated to other campaigns running at the same time.

            You can enter or update this value for a campaign only after associating a trigger with the campaign. Default value = 0, Range = 0 to number of available ports for the campaign duration.

            For example, if you have a medium or large profile VM, which supports maximum of 300 IVR ports with 50 licensed ports for Outbound IVR and you have already dedicated:

            • 20 ports for Campaign1, which runs between 10-12 pm and
            • 10 ports for Campaign2, which runs between 2-4 pm, then the number of dedicated IVR ports that you can enter in this field for a new campaign cannot exceed:
              • 30 ports if the new campaign runs between 10-12 pm and
              • 40 ports if the new campaign runs between 2-4 pm and
              • 50 ports if the new campaign runs during any time other than 10-12 pm and 2-4 pm

            If the number of configured ports for a campaign is greater than the available number of licensed ports at the specified campaign time, then an alert message stating the same will be shown while saving the campaign.

            See Unified CCX requirements to know how the licensed IVR ports are distributed between the inbound and outbound IVR calls in different scenarios.

            Lines Per Port (1-3)

            Number of lines to be dialed for each port. The dialer will try to connect as many live voices to the available port(s) where IVR script is playing and it will disconnect the remaining calls. The probability of abandoned calls increases geometrically as the lines per port increases.

            In an IVR-based Progressive campaign, you can configure the number of lines to dial per port at a time. The dialer will determine the number of calls to dial based on the following calculation - Lines per port * Available number of ports.

            In an IVR-based Predictive campaign, this is the seed value that is passed to the predictive algorithm. Initially the dialer starts dialing with this value.

            Note   

            If you change this value in the middle, the predictive algorithm will take the updated value in this field during the next iteration.

            This is a mandatory field.

            Default value = 1.5; Range = 1 to 3.

            Handle Low Volume as Voice

            Determines whether a low volume call should be treated as voice or disconnected. Select Yes or No radio button accordingly.

            Default is Yes, which means low volume calls are handled as voice and they are connected to the IVR port.

            Answering Machine Treatment

            This field enables you to specify how to handle an outbound call if it detects an answering machine. If the call detects an answering machine, you can choose to abandon the call or transfer it to IVR by selecting the desired radio button in this field.

            Transfer to IVR radio button is enabled by default.

            (The following four fields in Dialing Options are displayed only if you have selected Predictive dialer type for an IVR-based campaign)

            Maximum Lines Per Port (1-3)

            Maximum number of lines to be dialed for each port. You can configure the maximum number of lines that can be dialed per port and the predictive algorithm ensures that it does not exceed this number.

            This is a mandatory field. Default value = 3.0, Range = 1 to 3.

            Predictive Correction Pace (10-1000)

            The number of calls that were answered by live voice that the predictive algorithm should consider for each iteration. This is directly proportional with the correction frequency made in the Lines Per Port parameter. This is a mandatory field. Default value = 100, Range = 10 to 1000.

            Note   

            It is advisable not to change this value.

            Predictive Gain

            The Gain parameter controls the size of the lines per port corrections. This is directly proportional to the size of the lines per port correction.

            This is a mandatory field. Default value = 1.0, Range = Greater than 0 to 1.0.

            Note   

            It is advisable not to change this value.

            Call Abandon Limit (0-100)

            Call abandon percentage, which should be within the limit specified by Federal Trade Commission (FTC). This is a mandatory field.

            Default value - 3%, Range 0-100%. This means that no more than three percent of calls that are answered by a person are abandoned, measured per day per calling campaign.

            Dial Settings (displayed only if you have selected IVR-based campaign type)

            No Answer Ring Limit

            The duration for which the Progressive/Predictive dialer should allow the phone to ring before disconnecting an unanswered call.

            Default is 15 seconds, which means that the dialer should wait for a minimum of 15 seconds before disconnecting a call. Range = 1-60 seconds.

            Abandoned Call Wait Time

            If the customer disconnects the call within the time set here, then the call is classified as customer abandoned. This is a mandatory field.

            Default value = 2 seconds, Range = 1 to 10 seconds.

            Retries (displayed only if you have selected IVR-based campaign type): Set the value for the following four fields as “0” if you want to disable retry option for an existing IVR campaign.

            No Answer Delay

            Duration (in minutes) for which the dialer waits before calling back a no-answer call.

            Default value = 60 minutes.

            Busy Signal Delay

            Duration (in minutes) for which the dialer waits before calling back a busy telephone number.

            Default value = 60 minutes.

            Customer Abandoned Delay

            If a customer abandons a call, the duration (in minutes) after which the dialer should call the customer back.

            Default value = 30 minutes.

            Dialer Abandoned Delay

            If the dialer abandons a call, the duration (in minutes) after which the dialer should call back the customer.

            Default value = 60 minutes.

            Displayed only if you have selected Agent Based campaign type

            Contact Records Cache Size

            The number of contact records the Outbound subsystem retrieves from the database in bulk for dialing. The allowed values are 1-100. This is a mandatory field. For example, if 50 records are retrieved in bulk for campaign1 and 10 for campaign2 and they are running at the same time, the Outbound subsystem attempts to place 50 Outbound calls for campaign1 and 10 Outbound calls for campaign2. The number of Outbound calls actually placed for each campaign depends upon the number of agents available for the respective campaigns.

            Once all the records retrieved for a campaign have been dialed, the Outbound subsystem fetches another batch of records for that campaign. Over a period of time, it is likely that more contacts would have been called from campaign1 than from campaign2.

            If two campaigns run simultaneously and share CSQs or agents, the records in both campaigns may not be processed at the same rate—even if their contact cache sizes are identical. It is possible that more records from one of these two campaigns is processed before the other.

            Default = 20, Range = 1 to 100

            Answering Machine Retry

            If you select Yes, then the Outbound Subsystem retries the contact after all the callbacks and pending contacts for the campaign are dialed out.

            Default = No

            Callback Missed

            Determines the action that should be taken on the contacts that were not called back. The three options for this field are:

            • Reschedule for same time next business day (default)
            • Mark it for a retry
            • Close the record.

            Assigned CSQs

            CSQs from which agents are selected for Outbound calls for this campaign. This is a mandatory field.

            Available CSQs

            CSQs that have been allocated for Outbound and are not yet assigned to this campaign.

            Step 3   Click Add or Save to save the configuration changes. While saving a new or updated IVR campaign, the Outbound IVR subsystem validates the Session values in the application and trigger pages based on following criteria, and it might display an alert message to increase Session value in application and trigger pages:
            • In case of a Progressive campaign, the Outbound subsytem checks whether the Lines Per Port * Dedicated Port is greater than the minimum of the Session value in application and trigger.
            • In case of a Predictive campaign, the Outbound subsytem checks whether the maximum Lines Per Port * Dedicated Port is greater than minimum of the Session value in application and trigger.

            You should increase the Session values in the application and trigger to the suggested value in the alert message to reduce the number of abandoned calls in an IVR campaign.

            Once you create a campaign, you need to import contacts for the campaign.


            Import contacts for campaign


            Note


            • You can only import a total of 10,000 contacts for a campaign at any given time. When some or all of these contacts are processed, you can import additional contacts to add up to a total of 10,000 at any given time.
            • While importing the contacts file for a campaign, use only comma-separated plain text file with .txt extension. The contacts file should be ASCII-encoded or UTF-8 encoded if it contains special characters (for example, if the contact names are in Chinese, Russian, Japanese and so on).

            When contacts are imported, the contacts text file is checked for duplicate entries. If the phone01 value of a contact matches the phone01, phone02, or phone03 values of another contact in the contacts list being imported, then the previous contact is overwritten with the new contact.


            Caution


            You must verify all the contacts against the national do_not_call list before importing them.



            Note


            In this guide, the underscore character linking each word differentiates the national do_not_call list from the Outbound subsystem's Do Not Call list.



            Tip


            Each time contacts are imported, they are appended to the existing list of contacts for the selected campaign. If the new list contains a contact with the same phone01 value as the phone01, phone02, or phone03 value, or the same phone02 value as the phone01, phone02, or phone03 value, or the same phone03 value as the phone01, phone02, or phone03 value, of an existing contact, the existing contact is overwritten with the new contact information. The call history for the contact (if any) is retained.


            To import contacts for a selected campaign, complete the following steps.

            Procedure
              Step 1   From the Unified CCX Administration menu bar, choose Subsystems > Outbound > Campaigns.

              The Campaigns web page opens, displaying the details of existing campaigns.

              Step 2   Click the hyperlink below the Name column for the campaign for which you want to import the contacts.

              The Campaign Configuration web page opens for the selected campaign.

              Step 3   Click Import Contacts. The Import Contacts web page opens.
              Step 4   Specify a file name to import the contacts from the fields being imported.

              A contact list can contain up to 7 fields: AccountNumber, FirstName, LastName, Phone1, Phone2, Phone 3 and DialTime.

              Note    DialTime field is used to specify the time to dial a number for individual contacts on the current date. The format to be used for this field is HH:MM. For example, to specify the dialing time as 08:25 am, the dial time field value should be 08:25 and for 03:45 pm, the dial time field value should be 15:45.
              Step 5   Navigate to the directory that contains the imported fields in the same order as they appear in the text file.

              What to Do Next

              While uploading outbound contacts in a HA over WAN deployment of Unified CCX, if all the contacts that are being uploaded exist in the database and are being modified, follow these guidelines to avoid long delays:

              • Upload the contacts during non-peak hours.
              • Upload in batches of 500 contacts or less.

              Enable campaigns

              You must verify that the configured campaigns are active and that the start and end times for the enabled campaigns are specified as required.

              To verify the state of the required campaign, complete the following steps.

              Procedure
                Step 1   From the Unified CCX Administration menu bar, choose Subsystems > Outbound > Campaigns.

                The Campaigns web page opens, displaying following information for the existing campaigns:

                Field

                Description

                Name

                Name of the campaign.

                Start Time/End Time (hh:mm) AM PM

                Start Time and End Time fields indicate the time range during which the campaign runs.

                Remaining Contacts

                The Remaining Contacts field indicates the number of contacts that are yet to be dialed for each campaign. In addition to the contacts that have not been dialed, this number also includes contacts that have requested a callback and contacts that will be tried again because of unsuccessful prior attempt(s) (for example, the contact was busy or unavailable). A detailed breakdown of the pending contacts is provided in the Printable Reports page for each campaign.

                Enabled

                The Enabled field indicates to the Outbound subsystem whether this campaign is currently active.

                Campaign Type

                Denotes whether a specific campaign is IVR-based or Agent-based. The existing campaigns will be marked as Agent-based after an upgrade.

                Delete

                Click Delete icon next to the name of the campaign that you want to delete.

                Step 2   Verify that the Enabled field is set to TRUE and that the start and end times are specified as required.

                Add area codes


                Caution


                Area code and long distance prefix configuration changes made to the Outbound subsystem do not take effect for calls/contacts currently in the Outbound subsystem's memory. For example, if you change the long distance prefix or local area code, the contacts already in the Outbound subsystem's memory will continue to use the old long distance prefix and local area code.


                The Outbound subsystem provides all of the mappings from North American area codes to their corresponding time zones at the time of product release. The Area Codes page allows the administrator to add, modify, and delete any area-code-to-time-zone mappings.

                Some area codes extend across multiple time zones. For such area codes, an administrator can edit the default time zone for that area code and specify a different one, if required.

                The Area Codes Management page allows users to find, add, delete, and modify the mapping of area codes and time zones. The Outbound subsystem uses the area code of a contact's phone number to determine the time zone of the contact's calling area. This page can also be used for adding international area codes. International area codes must include the country code and the city code.

                To add an area code, complete the following steps.

                Procedure
                  Step 1   From the Unified CCX Administration menu bar, choose Subsystems > Outbound > Area Codes.

                  The Area Codes Management web page opens.

                  Step 2   In the Area Code field, specify a unique identifier for the area code. This field can have any numeric value, including 0 or leading zeros. This is a mandatory field.
                  Step 3   Click Add New icon that displays in the tool bar in the upper, left corner of the window or the Add New button that displays at the bottom of the window.

                  The new Area Code information is updated.


                  Communication with agents desktops

                  In Unified CCX, CAD allows agents to handle Outbound calls. The Cisco Agent Desktop and Cisco Supervisor Desktop do not support any new reports.

                  To display the additional buttons for the Outbound feature on CAD, the Direct Preview option must be enabled on Cisco Desktop Administrator (CDA). See the Cisco Desktop Administrator's User Guide and the Cisco Agent User Guide for more information.

                  Agents receive outbound calls

                  Agents can now log in and get ready to receive Outbound calls. To do so, agents must belong to CSQs assigned to Outbound.

                  Agent allocation

                  The Outbound subsystem allocates agents for Outbound calls by pulling a batch of contacts from the db_cra database and assigning a Ready agent to each by reserving the agents for Outbound calls and presenting them with the Outbound calls. Only CAD agents are presented with Outbound calls.

                  Agents are chosen from the CSQ using the same criteria configured in Unified CCX Administration GUI for inbound calls. If an agent accepts an Outbound call, the Outbound subsystem initiates a call on the agent's behalf. If the agent rejects the contact, the agent reservation is cancelled and the agent becomes Ready again and may be presented with either an Outbound call or an inbound call. The contact that was rejected is assigned to another agent. If the agent decides to skip the contact, the agent reservation is not cancelled. Instead, the skipped contact gets assigned to another (or the same) agent.

                  The agent's response (such as accept, skip, and reject) is saved in the database for each contact presented during a campaign. If the agent does not respond within the timeout configured on the General page of the Outbound subsystem configuration in Unified CCX Administration GUI, the Outbound subsystem moves the agent to Not Ready state (much like an inbound Not Ready state) and assigns the contact to another agent. The status of the contact (for example, the contact can be closed or needs to be dialed again) and the call result (for example, the contact was reached successfully or contact was not at home) is recorded in the database and this data is presented in the real-time and historical reports.


                  Note


                  Calls made by the Outbound subsystem will not be displayed in the Contacts Summary Real-Time Report.


                  The goal of the subsystem is to maximize the number of Outbound calls made without sacrificing the inbound service level of the CSQs involved in the Outbound campaign. It accomplishes this by only using agents sitting idle in Ready state, not handling inbound calls. The administrator configures, through the Unified CCX Administration GUI, the percentage of logged in agents (CAD + IPPA in Ready, Work, Reserved, or Talking state) in a CSQ that are allocated for handling Outbound calls.

                  Customer information preview

                  Before placing an Outbound call, an available agent is reserved and presented with a preview record on the desktop. This lets the agent preview the contact before deciding on an action. This dialog contains customer information such as name, account number, and phone number.

                  The enabled buttons when an agent is in the Reserved state are described in the following table:

                  Status

                  Result of Selecting this Status

                  Accept

                  Accept the current preview record and initiate the Outbound call to the customer from the agent's phone.

                  Reject

                  Reject the current preview record, cancel the agent reservation, and change the agent state to Ready. The agent can now handle either inbound or Outbound calls.

                  Reject-Close

                  Reject the current preview call and close the record so that contact is not called again for this particular campaign. This cancels the agent reservation and changes the agent's state to Ready so the agent can now handle either inbound or Outbound calls.

                  Skip

                  Skip the current preview record and retain the agent in the reserved state to allow the agent to handle another Outbound contact.

                  Skip-Close

                  Skip the current preview call and close the record so the contact is not called again for this particular campaign. The agent remains reserved to handle another Outbound contact.

                  Cancel Reservation

                  Cancel the agent reservation and set the agent to the Not Ready state. The record remains open in the database. This state is similar to the Reject state except that the agent is transferred to the Not Ready state instead of the Ready state.

                  Exchange of data with CAD

                  Unified CCX uses predefined Expanded Call Context (ECC) variables to exchange data with CAD for the Preview Outbound option. Unified CCX uses the same ECC variables that Unified ICME uses for the Preview Outbound option.

                  These ECC variables are present on CDA. To display them on CAD, they must be added to the OODefault layout that is associated with the call.

                  The following table lists the pre-defined ECC variables used for the Preview Outbound option:


                  Caution


                  Do not use these pre-defined ECC variables in any other context as they are reserved for the Outbound feature.


                  ECC Variable

                  Description

                  BAStatus

                  Required. Contains two characters indicating the mode and direction of the Preview Outbound option initiated call.

                  • The first character identifies the call mode:
                    • D = Direct Preview reservation for Unified CCX
                    • C = Direct Preview call for Unified CCX
                    • Z = the Outbound call transferred or conferenced
                  • The second character identifies the direction (always ‘O’ = Outbound for Unified CCX).

                  So a BAStatus of DO would indicate a Direct Preview Reservation for an Outbound Call, which is always the case for Outbound calls in Unified CCX.

                  BACampaign

                  Optional. The name of the Outbound campaign to which the call belongs.

                  BAAccountNumber

                  Optional. Identifies a customer account number and can be used by CAD to perform a database lookup to obtain additional customer data. This ECC variable displays only if the data was available in the customer import file. Note: The maximum character length of this ECC variable is 30 characters.

                  BAResponse

                  Optional. Multi-purpose placeholder that sends data from CAD to the Preview Outbound option. This variable is used when the CAD responds to the server’s agent reservation request (for example, Accept, Reject, Skip, etc.). It is also used to schedule and cancel callbacks and make changes to the callback number.

                  BADialedListID

                  Optional. Unique key identifying a specific customer record.

                  BATimeZone

                  Optional. The GMT offset, in minutes, for the customer’s time zone and local time.

                  BABuddyName

                  Optional. Contains the customer’s first and last name separated by a comma, if provided in the contacts list imported for the campaign.

                  BACustomerNumber

                  Optional. Contains dialed customer phone number.

                  Call status values

                  For each contact, the call statuses and their corresponding values are recorded in the database and described in the following table:

                  Call Status

                  Value (stored in database)

                  Description

                  Pending

                  1

                  The call is pending. This is the initial state for all records.

                  Active

                  2

                  The record was retrieved by the Outbound subsystem for dialing.

                  Closed

                  3

                  The record is closed (not dialed).

                  Callback

                  4

                  The record is marked for a callback.

                  Max Calls

                  5

                  Maximum attempts have been reached for this record (considered closed).

                  Retry

                  6

                  The record is redialed immediately whenever there is any miss in the callbacks for Retries with Delay.

                  Unknown

                  7

                  If the Outbound subsystem was restarted with records in the Active (2) state, they are moved to this state.

                  Retries with Delay

                  8

                  The record is redialed as it was either busy, no answer, customer abandoned or system abandoned. Retry time is set as per the corresponding configuration in Unified CCX Application Administration web interface.

                  Contact states reset at midnight

                  The Outbound subsystem performs the following actions at midnight:

                  • The DialingListConfig records with a call status of Unknown are reset to Pending.
                  • Missed callback records (dialingListConfig records that have call status callback and a callBackDateTime smaller than the current time) are updated depending on the missed callback action configured in the Unified CCX Administration GUI.
                    • MissedCallbackAction: Reschedule (for the same time on the next business day)
                    • MissedCallbackAction: Retry (sets the call status to Retry and retries at the start of next business day)
                    • MissedCallbackAction: Close (sets the call status to Closed)
                    • Dialing list records with a call status of Closed or Max_Calls are deleted

                      Note


                      The records marked as closed today will be deleted the next day at midnight. For example, the records closed on 4th June will be deleted on 5th June at midnight.


                    • Dialing list records with a call result of Do Not Call are not deleted, as these records are exported to a text file.
                  • The DialingListConfig records with a call status of "Retries with delay" and which could not be retried due to lapsed time are marked for immediate retry at midnight.
                  • When the Unified CCX engine goes from offline to online (for example, the standby server becomes active [online] if the active [first] server fails), the dialing list records with a status of Unknown are reset to Pending.

                  Call result values

                  For each contact, the call results (as marked by the agent on CAD or automatically deleted by the system) and their corresponding values are recorded in the database and described in the following table:

                  Call Result

                  Value (stored in database)

                  Description

                  Voice

                  1

                  Customer answered and was connected to agent.

                  Fax

                  2

                  Fax machine or modem detected.

                  Answering machine

                  3

                  Answering machine detected.

                  Invalid

                  4

                  Number reported as invalid by the network.

                  Do Not Call

                  5

                  Customer did not want to be called again.

                  Wrong Number

                  6

                  Number successfully contacted but wrong number.

                  Customer Not Home

                  7

                  Number successfully contacted but reached the wrong person.

                  Callback

                  8

                  Customer requested callback.

                  Agent Rejected

                  9

                  Agent skipped or rejected the preview call.

                  Agent Closed

                  10

                  Agent skipped or rejected the preview call with the close option (not dialed).

                  Busy

                  11

                  Busy tone detected.

                  Ring No Answer

                  12

                  Agent did not respond to the preview call within the time out duration.

                  Note   

                  You can configure the time out duration using the Preview Call Timeout field detailed in the Configure general outbound properties.

                  Callback Failed

                  13

                  This value should not be written to the database; this is for internal use only.

                  Callback Missed

                  14

                  Callback missed and marked for Retry.

                  Timeout

                  15

                  Customer phone timed out either due to Ring No Answer (RNA) or Gateway failure.

                  Call Abandoned

                  16

                  Call was abandoned because IVR port was unavailable or Unified CCX failed due to transfer the call to the IVR port.

                  Call Failed

                  17

                  Call failed due any one of the following reasons:

                  • Dialer asked the Gateway to cancel a call that has not yet been placed
                  • Gateway has declined the call
                  • Gateway is down or Gateway has timed out while placing the call
                  • Gateway failure or configuration issues at the Gateway.

                  Customer Abandoned

                  18

                  Customer abandoned as customer disconnected the call within the time limit as configured in "Abandoned Call Wait Time" in Unified CCX Application Administration web interface.

                  Reclassification status behavior

                  When the Outbound contacts are imported into the database from the Unified CCX Administration GUI, the call status column in the Dialing List table is assigned the default value of 1 (Pending), indicating that these Outbound contacts are yet to be dialed. When the Outbound subsystem retrieves a batch of contacts from the database, the call status is set to 2 (Active). After a call is placed to the Outbound contact, the call status is set to 3 (Closed) and the call result is set to 1 (Voice), as all Outbound calls are classified by the agent desktop as voice by default. If the agent clicks the reclassification button on the agent desktop and reclassifies the call as answering machine/fax/busy/invalid or selects the callback button and schedules a callback, the Outbound subsystem updates the call result field accordingly and, based on the call result, it also updates the call status.

                  The following table describes the relationship between call status and call result values and the resulting behavior of the system. The values in brackets are the actual values stored in the database.


                  Note


                  The following information is applicable only for Preview Dialer.


                  Call Result

                  Call Status

                  Behavior

                  Voice (1)

                  Closed (3)

                  This contact is not dialed again.

                  Fax (2)

                  Retry (6)

                  This contact is retried, using a different phone number provided for this contact. If alternate phone numbers are not available, the call status is closed.

                  Answering machine (3)

                  Retry (6)

                  This contact is retried, with the same phone number as before.

                  Invalid (4)

                  Retry (6)

                  This contact is retried, using a different phone number provided for this contact. If alternate phone numbers are not available, the call status is closed.

                  Do Not Call (5)

                  Closed (3)

                  This contact is not dialed again.

                  Wrong Number (6)

                  Retry (6)

                  This contact is retried, using a different phone number provided for this contact. If alternate phone numbers are not available, the call status is closed.

                  CustomerNotHome (7)

                  Retry (6)

                  Callback (8)

                  Callback (4)

                  This contact is dialed again using the number stored in the callbackNumber column, at the time stored in callbackDateTime column.

                  Reject or Skip (9)

                  Active (No change)

                  This contact is presented to another agent.

                  Reject-Close or Skip-Close

                  Closed (5)

                  This contact is not dialed again.

                  Busy

                  Retry (6)

                  This contact is retried, with the same phone number as before.

                  The call status is set to 5 (Closed) when the Outbound contact is no longer dialed for this campaign. This happens when a call was successfully placed (call result is voice) and also when an agent selects Skip-Closed, Reject-Closed, or Do Not Call. This also happens automatically if the system reaches the maximum attempts limit for an Outbound contact, which means that the system tried dialing the Outbound contact the maximum number of times configured in the Unified CCX Administration GUI.

                  Skip-next behavior


                  Tip


                  To ensure that a skip-next selection is handled as designed, be sure to set at least two, if not all three, phone numbers.


                  When an agent on an outbound call with a customer selects the skip-next button on CAD, two options (wrong number or not home) are made available to this agent. The behavior for both options is the same, the agent continues to remain on the call with the customer, while the outbound dialer updates the phone number to be dialed to the next available phone number (of the three phone number possibilities—phone01, phone02 and phone03).

                  Once the call ends, the contact is retried after all the callbacks and pending contacts for the campaign are dialed out. For retry, the outbound dialer uses the next available phone number updated during the skip-next operation. If the record is imported with only one phone number, and phone02 and phone03 are empty, this record is closed after the agent drops the call. If phone02 is empty, but phone03 is present, then phone03 is used as the next number to dial.


                  Note


                  The contact is retried only if the number of calls attempted for the contact has not exceeded the maximum attempts configured in the campaign.

                  Skip/reject behavior

                  The Outbound subsystem handles agent skip/reject requests as listed below:

                  • Skip/reject close request: The contact is always set to Closed.
                  • Contact is a callback record: The contact goes back in queue so the callback can be retried.
                  • Contact is not a callback: It is set to Pending and is picked up from the database the next time that the Outbound subsystem reads records.
                  • Contact is recalled (deleted the CSQ to which this contact belonged, or the campaign that this contact belongs to was stopped): This contact is no longer considered a callback.
                  • Reject: The agent is moved to available or unavailable (depending on configuration) after the reject.
                  • Skip: The Outbound subsystem verified if there is another contact in queue for this agent. If so, the agent remains in the reserved state and receives a new DialingListConfig. Now, the agent has the option again to accept/reject/skip/... for this new record.
                  • No new record for this agent: This agent is moved to available or unavailable, again depending on the configuration.
                  • No record for this agent: With only one active agent for a CSQ, the Outbound subsystem only requests one contact,. If the agent skips this contact, there is no other contact available.

                  Call retrieval priority

                  While retrieving Outbound contacts from the database, records that have scheduled callbacks have priority as the callback time must be adhered to. Outbound contacts are retrieved in the following order of priority:

                  • Priority 1: Outbound contacts with scheduled callback (call status = 4) and the current time is within the CallbackTimeLimit configured on the Campaigns page (default value is15 minutes) of the scheduled callback time.
                  • Priority 2: Outbound contacts in the Pending state (call status = 1).
                  • Priority 3: Outbound contacts in the Retry state (call status = 6).

                  Failover and system restarts

                  Outbound contacts with an Active call status during a failover indicate that these contacts were retrieved from the database but the system went down either before they could be dialed or after they were dialed but before the call status and call result columns were updated. When the system restarts, the call status for all such Outbound contacts is changed to 7 (Unknown). All Outbound contacts in the Unknown state will be reset to the Pending state (should be retrieved for dialing again) at midnight every night.

                  If there is an Outbound call in progress during a failover, they cannot be dialed again, as the call status is set to Closed as soon as an Outbound call is placed and these records will not be retrieved for dialing again when the system comes back. However, if the failover happened before the system could update the call status to Closed, these records remain in the Active state and are marked Unknown so they transition to Pending state after midnight. Once they are in the Pending state, they will be dialed again.

                  Do Not Call contacts


                  Note


                  In this guide, the underscore character linking each word differentiates the national do_not_call list from the Outbound subsystem's Do Not Call list.


                  When an agent reclassifies an outbound contact as Do Not Call from CAD, then the record of the contact is closed and marked inactive in the database and it will not be dialed again. In addition to this, for all contacts in other campaigns that contain the same phone number as the outbound contact marked as Do Not Call, the records will be closed and marked inactive in the database and those contacts will not be dialed again.

                  The following actions are performed by the Outbound subsystem:

                  • All contacts marked Do Not Call are exported to a file. If the file already exists, the new contacts being exported are appended to the file along with a timestamp of when the export was done.
                  • After the Do Not Call contacts are exported to the file, they are marked inactive in the Dialing List table and are permanently deleted from the database when the database is purged.