You may ask what is the meaning of CTI? Computer Telephony Integration or CTI is a technology that enables a computer to control a telephone i.e. the user can easily make calls without even touching an actual telephone. The most common application of CTI is a “screen-pop” that has the ability to populate the computer screen with caller information and history. It allows for routing of calls to the most appropriate agent, placing the caller on hold, transferring the caller to another department and so on by fully utilizing technologies such as IVR, Automatic Number Identification (ANI) and voice conferences etc.
Benefits of CTI
CTI has helped call centers to gain a competitive advantage by enabling them to take a more data-driven approach while interacting with the customers. Call centers have witnessed significant reductions in costs, decreased call handle time, enhanced productivity and improved efficiencies. Below are some of the core benefits of Computer Telephony Integration:
Easy Call Handling
No need to touch a phone when CTI is configured. Call center agents can easily make and receive calls with simple click of buttons on their computer screen. The browser is enabled with advanced call control functionalities such as answer, hang up, hold and transfer etc., making it convenient to run the entire calling process. Agents would no longer have to struggle between their contact center software and telephone, everything can be done through a computer.
Detailed Information of the Customer is Available
An agent can scan through the detailed information and past history of the caller with the help of automated “screen pop”. As soon as the agent is routed with a call, entire data of the customer such as name, contact details, email ID, professional details etc get visible on the agent screen. This empowers the agents to have a more personalized and smart conversation with customers, thereby engaging them well and making them feel more valued. It also improves agent’s productivity by reducing the call handling time as the agent would not have to juggle between different databases to find the customer’s details.
Integration of Call Logs and Caller Data into a Unified Dashboard
Computer Telephony Integration software permits integration of call log and caller data such as call history, call recordings, personal information, emails, purchase history, cases and support tickets etc – all in one unified dashboard. It increases the efficiency of the call center agents when it comes to call handling and also allows them to offer a more personalized service.
Increased Collaboration Within Departments
Call center software features such as video conferencing, call barging, call transferring and whispering are crucial for agents to handle the customer calls in an efficient manner. CTI and real-time data updates facilitate smooth collaboration making use of the above-mentioned functions. If agents face issues while solving a customer’s query, they can immediately ask their supervisors for help. Agents can initiate a conference call and include their supervisors so as to help answer the customer’s question. Agents can also transfer the call to other departments if required. Implementation of CTI software eliminates the need of repeating the information all over again, in case of call transfers, thereby reducing customer frustration to a great extent.
An Inbound call center receives high volume of calls each day and hence requires many agents to handle them effectively. Putting callers on hold or call abandonments can lead to increased cost and loss of business as well. However, with the enablement of CTI, these costs can be reduced considerably through the following:
- Shortening the average length of the call. This maximizes the number of talk minutes per hour and ultimately reduces the required number of staff
- Reducing the requirement of telephone lines for providing calling services to the customers
- Automating the call back of inbound abandoned calls with the help of ANI or Caller line Identification( CLI)
- Reflecting professionalism in company’s approach, thereby improving image and volume of calls
CTI implementation helps contact centers to reduce the average duration of each call, thus ensuring higher productivity of agents. The spare time can be utilized for handling other calls which eliminates the need of adding more staff.
Enhanced Caller Experience
By knowing the identity of the caller before receiving a call and greeting the caller by name enables agents to offer a more personalized customer experience. Not having to repeat the information is a great benefit to the customer. All these reduce the complexity of the call and make it a satisfying experience for both the agents and the callers.