Cisco® CallManager Attendant Console is an application from Cisco Systems® that supports the traditional role of a manual attendant-console hardware device. Associated with an IP phone, the application allows the attendant to quickly accept and dispatch calls to enterprise users. An integrated directory service provides traditional busy-lamp-field (BLF) and direct-station-select (DSS) functions for any line in the system.
Cisco CallManager Attendant Console integrates traditional time-division multiplexing (TDM) telephony functions with advanced IP telephony applications and services such as Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) directory and HTML services. A primary benefit of Cisco CallManager Attendant Console over traditional attendant-console systems is its ability to monitor the state of every line in the system and to efficiently dispatch calls. The absence of a hardware-based line-monitor device offers an affordable and mobile attendant solution.
Enterprises today may choose to route inbound telephone calls through numerous methods. These methods are either completely automated, manually directed, or some hybrid of automated and manual operation.
A separate product, the Cisco Automated Attendant application can accept inbound calls, query the caller for destination information, and rapidly dispatch the call without operator intervention. Automation of inbound call dispatch is efficient and affordable.
Alternatively, many businesses see the benefit of handling each inbound caller through a specially trained and equipped operator. This operator assesses the caller's purpose and intended destination and uses tools to dispatch the call reliably and efficiently. The benefit of such a function is a heightened sense of customer satisfaction and, in many cases, a more reliably dispatched call.
The Cisco CallManager Attendant Console is designed to more efficiently automate both the user operations and the administrative operations of a manual attendant function. The attendant console uses an intuitive and configurable graphical user interface as the primary means of call handling and line-state monitoring. The software nature of the attendant console allows assignment of line-state monitors without the need of physically relabeling extender boxes with each line-monitor change. The directory pane displays the results of queries into the directory of all users in the system. The line state of each user's primary line is presented with each record entry. The benefit over traditional consoles and line extenders is that each user's line is monitored, as opposed to monitoring only a select few in a TDM-based system (refer to Figure 1).
Advanced drag-and-drop capabilities and access to corporate LDAP directories combine to offer key advantages over traditional manual attendant stations. In a system with hundreds or thousands of users, the attendant-console operator can accept calls and perform directory lookup by selecting the field title in the directory section and typing in the first few characters of the user's last name, first name, or department. A directory search that matches the query is returned.
The operator can view the status of the user's line (forwarded, busy, idle, or ringing) and advise the caller of the line state. The operator can then transfer the call to the user by either initiating a traditional transfer sequence through the transfer function key or dragging and dropping the call from the selected loop to the desired user's record. The primary benefit of this user interface is quicker transaction time and subsequent customer satisfaction improvement.
The Cisco CallManager Attendant Console is scalable. Call-distribution groups can be assigned to any pilot number, which can in turn be assigned to one or more attendant-console loops. These loops represent answerable lines in a multiple attendant system. Calls are queued to one or more online attendant loops, thereby allowing scale and distribution among multiple operators. Multiple attendant consoles can be configured to monitor the same lines, affording scale to multiple operators when conditions require. Equivalent functions on a traditional system would require the purchase and administration of a line-extender device for each operator.
Access to directory services and content extends the attendant toolbox for providing efficient, courteous service well beyond the capabilities of equivalent, traditional manual attendant functions.
Cisco CallManager Attendant Console 1.3 ships with each Cisco CallManager 4.01 application. Cisco CallManager Attendant Console is not orderable separately. The client and server applications are installed as plug-ins from Cisco CallManager Administration screens.
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Posted: Tue Feb 17 15:20:09 PST 2004
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