Cisco® Unified Communications Solutions unify voice, video, data, and mobile applications on fixed and mobile networks, enabling easy collaboration every time from any workspace.
Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise uses an IP infrastructure to deliver skills-based contact routing, voice self-service, computer telephony integration (CTI), and multichannel contact management. By combining multichannel automatic-call-distributor (ACD) functions with IP telephony in a unified solution, Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise can help your company rapidly deploy a distributed voice-over-IP (VoIP) contact center infrastructure.
Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise segments customers, monitors resource availability, and delivers each contact to the most appropriate resource in the enterprise. The software profiles each customer contact using related data such as dialed number and calling line ID, caller-entered digits, data submitted on a web form, and information obtained from a customer database lookup. Simultaneously, the system monitors the resources available in the contact center to meet customer needs, including agent skills and availability, interactive-voice-response (IVR) status, and queue lengths.
This combination of customer and contact center data is processed through user-defined routing scripts that graphically reflect your company's business rules, enabling Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise to route each contact to the right place. Wherever an agent is based, the system delivers a rich set of call-event and customer-provided data to the targeted desktop as a contact arrives, personalizing service and increasing efficiency. Throughout the process, distributed fault tolerance helps ensure uninterrupted operation.
Features and Benefits
The routing functions of Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise provide the intelligent distribution of contacts as they enter the company's network. When a contact requires redirection, Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise applies business logic, sending the contact to the best available enterprise resource. For contacts flowing between sites or among agents, skill groups, or IVRs, the routing optimizes each customer's interaction by retaining collected data, eliminating the need for the customer to restate information.
Customer Profile Routing
Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise extends the sources of data available for making contact routing decisions and for populating agent desktop applications. For instance, Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise can perform a lookup in your customer database during routing to guide its decisions. You can also use information from customer relationship management (CRM) applications to match customers with agents and expand the data available to screen pop applications.
Incorporating Experts into the Contact Center
Cisco Unified Expert Advisor
Cisco Unified Expert Advisor expands the scope of the contact center by allowing presence-enabled enterprise knowledge workers to handle incoming customer calls without the need for the rigid tools and business rules typically found in formal contact centers.
Cisco Unified Expert Advisor improves first-call resolution and increases customer satisfaction by allowing subject matter experts anywhere in the enterprise to handle incoming customer calls. Experts receive precall data, allowing faster problem resolution. Cisco Unified Expert Advisor is highly flexible and customizable, allowing enterprises to implement the most appropriate architecture and business logic that meet their particular customer contact needs.
Cisco Agent Desktop and Cisco Unified Presence Integration
Integration of Cisco Agent Desktop with Cisco Unified Presence extends real-time collaboration into the broader enterprise by integrating the contact center desktop applications with Cisco Unified Presence. Through this integration, agents and supervisors can collaborate with relevant colleagues and subject matter experts outside the contact center. For efficiency and convenience, the contact center defines the view to show only those colleagues who are appropriate for agents to access.
Both parties use familiar applications. Contact center personnel use the Cisco Agent Desktop and Cisco Supervisor Desktop, and subject matter experts outside of the contact center use the Cisco Unified Personal Communicator or Cisco IP Phone Messenger. This feature helps agents connect with experts on the first try by knowing beforehand whether they are available and how they prefer to be reached.
Cisco Unified Web Interaction Manager
Cisco Unified Web Interaction Manager can help your contact center agents respond immediately to customer questions, using your website along with text chat or real-time web collaboration. Web collaboration allows contact center agents and customers to share webpages and collaboratively complete online forms. Cisco Unified Intelligent Contact Management Enterprise routes customer requests from your website using the same routing logic used for voice calls. Its reporting function also provides contact center statistics on all interactions, regardless of the communication channel used. Because it facilitates effective, personalized customer assistance, Cisco Unified Web Interaction Manager is suitable for both sales- and service-oriented contact centers.
Cisco Unified E-Mail Interaction Manager
Cisco Unified E-Mail Interaction Manager is a comprehensive solution for managing large volumes of customer email inquiries submitted to your company mailboxes or website. Based on customizable business rules, Cisco Unified E-Mail Interaction Manager accelerates the response process by automatically directing messages to the right agent or support team, categorizing and prioritizing messages, suggesting relevant response templates, and, if desired, sending automated replies. Quick, accurate turnaround of inquiries helps build stronger customer relationships, added value, and greater efficiency in the contact center.
Cisco Outbound Option
The Cisco Outbound Option, with its combination of outbound dialing modes, complements the powerful inbound call-handling capability of the Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise platform. You can build campaigns to use predictive, progressive, or preview dialing, which is integrated with inbound calls and compliant with contact center service levels to offer a powerful blended solution. You can allocate agents to handle only inbound, only outbound, or both inbound and outbound contacts, offering an effective way to increase resource use in a contact center.
Cisco Agent Desktop Browser Edition
The Cisco Agent Desktop Browser Edition executes as a thin client from within a commercial web browser, making it easy to deploy and maintain. The Cisco Agent Desktop Browser Edition also includes an agent toolbar, contact data, enterprise data, and agent status information, making it an ideal solution in thin-client applications.
Agent Capabilities and Benefits
Computer Telephony Integration Option
Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise can help you deploy a complete CTI strategy, including comprehensive functions at the agent's workstation. Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise delivers a rich set of data to business applications, providing enterprisewide call-event and customer-provided information to the agent's desktop. It sets a new standard for true enterprisewide, network-to-desktop CTI with minimal custom development or systems integration, helping your organization implement CTI quickly and cost-effectively.
Your company can save costs, improve efficiency, and increase revenue by using Cisco Unified CRM Connector to integrate your third-party CRM applications with Cisco Unified Contact Center solutions. This integration allows the agent to use the third-party CRM user interface as the sole interface to manage customer interactions. The agent can log in, control agent state, and conduct calls through the CRM user interface. When a new call arrives, a screen pop of CRM information instantly appears on the agent's terminal and the agent can retrieve CRM information by phone number, IVR information, or information the agent enters. Calls can be routed, connected to a conference, or transferred from within the CRM screen. Incoming and outgoing call activity is logged here as well.
Today's call centers need unified call flows, unified business processes, and unified desktops for both call management and business transaction navigation. The Cisco Unified CRM Connector is a comprehensive tool that readily supports popular CRM packages, including Oracle PeopleSoft, Oracle Siebel, SAP, Microsoft CRM, and Salesforce. With Cisco Unified CRM Connector, agents can place, receive, and transfer customer interactions with full, real-time access to third-party CRM customer data, saving money, increasing revenue, improving monitoring, and enabling excellent customer service.
Customers using Cisco Agent Desktop with Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise can integrate Cisco Agent Desktop with Salesforce.com and Siebel with minimal software development. For other popular third-party CRM applications, Cisco Agent Desktop facilitates integration using key-stroke macros or dynamic URLs, running the (web-based) CRM user interface in the Cisco Agent Desktop integrated browser.
Agent Desktop Options
Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise offers a variety of desktop options for contact center agents, including Cisco Unified IP Phone Agent, Cisco Agent Desktop, and Cisco CTI OS Toolkit Desktop. Cisco Unified IP Phone Agent provides basic automatic-call-distributor (ACD) functions on a Cisco Unified IP Phone - and in many cases it eliminates the need for installation of an agent desktop on the agent's PC. Cisco Agent Desktop provides ready-to-use agent desktop capabilities that allow agents to perform call-control functions directly from their desktops. Finally, for companies that require specialized, custom desktop capabilities tailored to meet the specific needs of their contact center operations, there is the Cisco CTI OS Toolkit Desktop.
Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise coordinates an agent's ability to work on multiple tasks from various channels while allowing the agent to be interrupted with high-priority tasks as required. For instance, an agent who is assisting a customer using text chat could handle another text chat request at the same time, increasing the agent's productivity. Agents also can be delivered a task of a different channel type from their active task. For example, an agent responding to a customer's email message can be sent a voice call, allowing the agent to handle the real-time voice call and then return to the email message. In this way, Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise can optimize your agents' activities, helping ensure the highest level of customer service with the resources available. Universal Queue can accurately report on an agent's tasks and activities. Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise provides real-time status and historical reporting of Universal Queue and interrupted tasks. Real-time displays accurately depict the agent's current task and time associated with it. Historical reports track the cumulative time associated with agent tasks, omitting the time the agent's focus was diverted to another routed task.
Remote Agent and Mobile Agent Support
Remote agent support extends the Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise environment by providing CTI, contact distribution, and reporting capabilities to remote agents in branch offices or at home. Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise provides identical user interfaces and feature functions to agents regardless of location.
Cisco Unified Mobile Agent adds the capability to enable temporary agents, who can be brought online during seasonal high call volume with reduced startup costs. Agents can choose their destination phone number during signup time and change the number as often as they want, giving the contact center the flexibility to adapt to a fast-moving mobile workforce.
By incorporating agents outside the physical location of a contact center, Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise helps companies better use existing and on-demand resources and fully extend CTI functions across the extended enterprise.
Self-Service and Call-Treatment Capabilities
Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise offers two options for self-service and call treatment: Cisco Unified IP Interactive Voice Response (IP IVR) and Cisco Unified Customer Voice Portal.
Cisco Unified IP IVR is designed to simplify business integration, increase flexibility, and provide efficiency gains in network hosting. These features reduce business costs - and they can dramatically improve customer satisfaction. Tightly integrated with Cisco Unified Communications Manager software, Cisco Unified IP IVR offers ease of installation, configuration, and application hosting because it is constructed to exploit the power of IP-based communications.
Cisco Unified IP IVR facilitates self-service applications, such as access to checking account information or user-directed call routing, by processing user commands through touch-tone input or speech-recognition technologies. Customers can use voice commands to retrieve the information they require without ever speaking with an agent, or to quickly navigate to the correct department or agent who can help them.
Cisco Unified Customer Voice Portal operates with both time-division multiplexing (TDM) and IP-based contact centers to provide a call-management and -treatment solution with a self-service IVR option that can use information available to customers on the corporate web server. With support for automated-speech-recognition (ASR) and text-to-speech (TTS) capabilities, callers can obtain personalized answers to their questions and conduct business in innovative ways without the costs of interacting with a live agent.
For example, with Cisco Unified Customer Voice Portal, customers can pay a bill, order products and track delivery, locate a dealer, schedule a pickup, change name and address information, make travel arrangements, check payment status, receive notification of unusual activity, or request literature or product information.
Management Capabilities and Benefits
Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise allows supervisors to view agent states and call information, send text chat messages to agents, interrupt or intercept calls, record conversations, and silently monitor agent calls from the corporate network or through a remote dial-in connection. These features add value to the supervisors' role in the contact center and help them effectively manage their teams.
With supervisor and agent chat capabilities, supervisors can send text messages to agents participating in a call, allowing supervisors to coach agents unobtrusively on cross-sell and up-sell opportunities and helping agents resolve customer situations. Supervisors can interrupt an agent's call to create a three-way conference, and then interact with both the caller and the agent to help resolve a concern. A supervisor can remove the agent from a call using the intercept feature, allowing the supervisor and caller to complete the call on their own while the agent handles another customer request.
Supervisors can change an agent's state from their desktop. For example, agents may forget to make themselves available to take calls after a break or neglect to log out when away from their workstation for an extended period. With Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise, supervisors can easily log out missing agents or make unintentionally idle agents ready to take calls. This function is critical to highly distributed contact center deployments.
Supervisors also can change an agent's skill profile in real time. This capability gives supervisors tactical tools to manage their agent teams and support contact center management objectives.
Streamlined administration allows managers to perform all Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise administration centrally. The administrative interface in Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise allows agents to be set up to handle voice, web, chat, and email contacts, depending on their assigned skill sets. The interface allows system managers, administrators, and supervisors to develop, modify, or view routing scripts; manage the system configuration; monitor contact center performance; define and request reports; and help ensure system security. This one user interface provides enterprisewide control across the single- or multisite contact center.
The Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise solution provides real-time and historical data necessary for mission-critical contact center reporting. The reporting function provides accurate and timely reports on contact center activity, helping managers make informed decisions regarding staffing levels, contact handling procedures, and technology investments. Standard reporting templates provide automatically operational functions for common reporting needs. Custom reports can extend the standard reporting package to meet specific reporting needs. Furthermore, the open software architecture of Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise allows for export of reporting data to external data warehouse environments.
The Cisco Unified Contact Center Management Portal provides a simple-to-use web-based user interface to streamline the day-to-day provisioning and configuration operations performed by contact center managers, team leads, or administrators - such as moves, adds, or modifications of phones, agents, skill groups, teams, and other common contact center administrative functions. Its unified configuration is designed to simplify administration of both the applicable IP-based contact center elements and the Cisco Unified Communications Manager components. The Cisco Unified Contact Center Management Portal is a partitioned system that can support multiple business units with complete autonomy and offers hierarchical administration to support multiple business-level users with specific roles and responsibilities. Finally, to help administrators and managers keep track of contact center modifications, it provides audit-trail reports detailing all configuration changes and usage of the management portal.
System Capabilities and Benefits
Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise software takes full advantage of industry-standard hardware platforms, giving you the benefits of many software functions at a modest hardware cost. The open architecture of the system, which includes an Open Database Connectivity (ODBC)-compliant database, as well as Java, COM, and .NET interfaces for CTI applications, can integrate with existing contact center solutions, preserving investments in traditional systems and providing a platform for future applications.
Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise scales from small, single-site deployments of tens of agents up to large, distributed deployments that support thousands. Because the Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise architecture is software-based, the system scales easily without causing obsolescence of any components. Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise is designed to accommodate changing contact center environments.
Distributed Fault Tolerance
From the network to the desktop, all Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise components and external application links provide carrier-class, distributed fault tolerance at both the hardware and software levels, with real-time application failover capabilities. Self-diagnostics and self-healing features allow the system to automatically take advantage of redundant components when required; the system is resilient to hardware component failures, communications network failures, and asynchronous software errors. Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise software also includes a Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) feed for integration into a broader corporate fault-management system.
Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise supports the latest in security and data integrity features and solutions. When deployed, the application servers are hardened, Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) is available on all web-based applications, and Transport Layer Security (TLS) and IP Security (IPsec) support is available for sockets-based communications to secure data in transit across trusted and untrusted networks.
In addition to supporting the latest antivirus applications from the major vendors, Cisco offers, as part of its unified communications solutions, the Cisco Security Agent, a host-based intrusion detection and prevention application that provides added protection. By analyzing behavior rather than relying on signature matching, Cisco Security Agent complements the capabilities of antivirus software to provide a robust solution to protect your network and reduce operational costs. For more information, please visit: http://www.cisco.com/go/csa.
Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise Server license
Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise 7.5 is a major release. Upgrades from prior releases require a Unified Communications Software Subscription (UCSS).
Cisco Unified Communications Services
Cisco Unified Communications Services allows you to accelerate cost savings and productivity gains associated with deploying a secure, resilient Cisco Unified Communications Solution. Delivered by Cisco and our certified partners, our portfolio of services is based on proven methodologies for unifying voice, video, data, and mobile applications on fixed and mobile networks. Our unique lifecycle approach to services can enhance your technology experience to accelerate true business advantage.
Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise provides a state-of-the-art contact center solution that allows you to integrate inbound and outbound voice applications with Internet applications, including real-time chat, web collaboration, and email messaging. This integration allows for unified capabilities, helping a single agent support multiple interactions simultaneously, regardless of the communications channel the customer has chosen. Because each interaction is unique and may require individualized service, Cisco provides contact center solutions to manage each interaction based on virtually any contact attribute.
Furthermore, Cisco can bridge the gap between TDM and IP infrastructures, integrating voice, chat, email, and web collaboration applications over both technology platforms. Thus your company can preserve the value of existing current investments in call center products such as ACDs, IVRs, and private branch exchanges (PBXs) and take advantage of the wide range of Cisco solutions to support the same contact center requirements in a converged network environment - continuing your evolution toward a true Customer Interaction Network.