Call Center Glossary , Bpo Call center

Abandoned Call: Also called a Lost Call. The caller hangs up before reaching an agent.

Adherence To Schedule: A general term that refers to how well agents adhere to their schedules.

After-Call Work: Also called Wrap-up and Post Call Processing (PCP). Work that is necessitated by and immediately follows an inbound transaction.

Agent: The person who handles incoming or outgoing calls.

Agent Group: Also called Split, Gate, Queue or Skills Group. A collection of agents that share a common set of skills, such as being able to handle customer complaints.

Agent Out Call: An outbound call placed by an agent.

Agent Status: The mode an agent is in (Talk Time, After-Call Work, Unavailable, etc.).

All Trunks Busy: When all trunks are busy in a specified trunk group.

Analog: Telephone transmission or switching that is not digital.

Announcement: A recorded verbal message played to callers.

Answer Supervision: The signal sent by the ACD or other device to the local or long distance carrier to accept a call.

Answered Call: When referring to an agent group, a call counted as answered when it reaches an agent.

Application Based Routing and Reporting: . The ACD capability to route and track transactions by type of call, or application (e.g., sales, service, etc.), versus the traditional method of routing and tracking by trunk group and agent group.

Architecture: The basic design of a system. Determines how the components work together, system capacity, upgradeability, and the ability to integrate with other systems.

Audiotex: A voice processing capability that enables callers to automatically access pre-recorded announcements.

Auto Available: An ACD feature whereby the ACD is programmed to automatically put agents into Available after they finish Talk Time and disconnect calls.

Auto Greeting: Agent’s pre-recorded greeting that plays automatically when a call arrives.

Auto Wrap-up: An ACD feature whereby the ACD is programmed to automatically put agents into After-Call Work after they finish Talk Time and disconnect calls.

Automated Attendant: A voice processing capability that automates the attendant function.

Automatic Call Distributor: The specialized telephone system used in incoming call centres.

Automatic Call Sequencer: A simple system that is less sophisticated than an ACD, but provides some ACD-like functionality.

Automatic Number Identification: A telephone network feature that passes the number of the phone the caller is using to the call centre, real-time.

Auxiliary Work State: An agent work state that is typically not associated with handling telephone calls. When agents are in an auxiliary mode, they will not receive inbound calls.

Available State: Agents who are signed on to the ACD and waiting for calls to arrive.

Available Time: The total time that an agent or agent group waited for calls to arrive, for a given time period.

Average Delay of Delayed Calls: It is the total Delay for all calls divided by the number of calls that had to wait in queue.

Average Handle Time: The sum of Average Talk Time and Average After-Call Work for a specified time period.

Average Holding Time on Trunks: The average time inbound transactions occupy the trunks.

Average Number of Agents: The average number of agents logged into a group for a specified time period.

Average Speed of Answer: The average delay of all calls.

Average Time to Abandonment: The average time that callers wait in queue before abandoning.

Adherence: The term used to describe how well agents stick to their planned work schedules. May also be referred to as compliance.

Advanced 800 Services: A set of toll-free services named initially by AT&T that includes long-distance calls routing into an organization based on time-of-day, point of origin, or percentage allocation of call volume.

Area Code: A three-digit number identifying geographic areas of the United States and Canada. It permits direct distance dialing on the telephone system.

Average Manned Time: The average amounts of time per reporting period agents were logged into the telephone system.

Base Staff: Also called Seated Agents. The minimum number of agents required to achieve service level and response time objectives for given period of time

Basic Rate Interface: One of two basic levels of ISDN service. A BRI line provides two bearer channels for voice and data and one channel for signaling

Beep Tone: An audible notification that a call has arrived

Benchmark: Historically, a term referred to as a standardized task to test the capabilities of devices against each other.

Best in Class: A benchmarking term to identify organizations that outperform all others in a specified category.

Blockage: Callers blocked from entering a queue.

Blocked Call: A call that cannot be connected immediately because A) no circuit is available at the time the call arrives, or B) the ACD is programmed to block calls from entering the queue when the queue backs up beyond a defined threshold.

Busy Hour: A telephone traffic engineering term, referring to the hour of time in which a trunk group carries the most traffic during the day.

Business to business: Contact that is primarily to other business. Also known as b2b

Call: Also called Transaction and Customer Contact. A term referring to telephone calls, video calls, Web calls and other types of contacts.

Call Blending: Combining traditionally separate inbound and outbound agent groups into one group of agents responsible for handling both inbound and outbound contacts.

Call By Call Routing: The process of routing each call to the optimum destination according to real-time conditions.

Call centre: An umbrella term that generally refers to reservations centres, help desks, information lines or customer service centres, regardless of how they are organized or what types of transactions they handle.

Callback Messaging: A feature in which callers on hold can leave an oral message or their telephone numbers using the keys of a touchtone telephone pad for later callback from an agent instead of remaining on hold.

Call Control Variables: The set of criteria the ACD uses to process calls.

Call Detail Recording: Data on each call, captured and stored by the ACD.

Call Forcing: An ACD feature that automatically delivers calls to agents who are available and ready to take calls.

Call Load: Also referred to as Work Load. Call Load is the product of (Average Talk Time + Average After-Call Work) x call volume, for a given period.

Caller-Entered Digits: Digits callers enter using their telephone keypads.

Calls In Queue: A real-time report that refers to the number of calls received by the ACD system but not yet connected to an agent.

Carrier: A company that provides telecommunications circuits. Carriers include both local telephone companies and long distance providers.

Cause-and-Effect Diagram: A tool to assist in root cause identification

CD-ROM: Compact Disc Read Only Memory. These discs hold as much as 660 megabytes of memory.

Central Office: Can refer to either a telephone company switching centre or the type of telephone switch used in a telephone company switching centre.

Centum Call Seconds: 100 call seconds, a unit of telephone traffic measurement. The first C is the Roman numeral for 100. 1 hour = 1 Erlang = 60 minutes = 36 CCS.

Chief Information Officer: A typical title for the highest ranking executive responsible for an organization’s information systems.

Circuit: A transmission path between two points in a network.

Client/Server Architecture: A network of computers that share capabilities and devices.

Collateral Duties: Non-phone tasks (e.g., data entry) that are flexible, and can be scheduled for periods when call load is slow.

Common Causes: Causes of variation that are inherent to a process over time. They cause the rhythmic, common variations in the system of causes, and they affect every outcome of the process and everyone working in the process.

Computer Simulation: A computer technique to predict the outcome of various events in the future, given many variables.

Computer Telephony Integration: The software, hardware and programming necessary to integrate computers and telephones so they can work together seamlessly and intelligently.

Conditional Routing: The capability of the ACD to route calls based on current conditions.

Continuous Improvement: The ongoing improvement of processes.

Control Chart: A control chart sifts out (identifies) two types of variation in a process, common causes and special causes.

Controlled Busies: The capability of the ACD to generate busy signals when the queue backs up beyond a programmable threshold.

Cost Centre: An accounting term that refers to a department or function in the organization that does not generate profit.

Cost of Delay: The money you pay to queue callers, assuming you have toll-free service.

Cost Per Call: Total costs (fixed and variable) divided by total calls for a given period of time.

Continuity program: A direct response offer involving systematically- scheduled purchases over time of a set of products or of product replenishments

Cross selling: Suggesting to a direct response customer the purchase of an additional product or service that may not necessarily relate to the original product purchased but which represents an attractive and/or limited time value

Customer service representative: An agent who handles customer calls and contacts including account inquiries, complaints, or support calls

Caller ID: A telephone network feature of the local telephone company by which the telephone number of the caller is passed to the called party.

Contact Management: Software applications and systems that keep track of all customer contacts for subsequent contacts and as an audit trail.

CRM: Customer Relationship Management. The strategy of identifying customer needs, improving customer interactions, and customizing contacts, sales approaches, and automation to provide optimum service to each type of customer to maximize the bottom line benefits to the organization.

Conditional Routing: The capability of the ACD to route calls or contacts on an “if…then” basis. Routing conditions can include day of week, time of day, agent availability, type of call, service needed, etc.

Carrier: A company that provides telecommunications circuits. Carriers include both local telephone companies and long distance providers.

Customer Service Representative: A teleservice representative who handles customer calls and contacts including account inquiries, complaints, or support calls.

Database Call Handling: A CTI application, whereby the ACD works in sync with the database computer to process calls, based on information in the database.

Day of Week Routing: A network service that routes calls to alternate locations, based on the day of week. There are also options for day of year and time of day routing.

Delay Announcements: Recorded announcements that encourage callers to wait for an agent to become available, remind them to have their account number ready, and provide information on access alternatives.

Delay: Also called Queue Time. The time a caller spends in queue, waiting for an agent to become available.

Delayed Call: A call which cannot be answered immediately and is placed in queue.

Dialed Number: The number that the caller dialed to initiate the call.

Dialed Number Identification Service: A string of digits that the telephone network passes to the ACD, VRU or other devise, to indicate which number the caller dialed.

Digital: The use of a binary code Ü 1s and 0s Ü to represent information.

Dual-Tone Multifrequency: A signaling system that sends pairs of audio frequencies to represent digits on a telephone keypad. It is often used interchangeably with the term Touchtone (an AT + T trademark).

Dynamic Answer: An ACD feature that automatically reconfigures the number of rings before the system answers calls, based on real-time queue information.

Database: Collection of data structured and organized in a disciplined fashion for quick and easy access to information of interest.

Data Directed Call Routing: A capability whereby an ACD can automatically process calls based on data provided by a database of information resident in a separate data system.

Data Mart: A small, single subject warehouse used by individual groups of users.

Data Mining: The automatic detection of trends and associations contained in a set of customer data.

Data Warehouse: Collection of physical data stores designed to present an historical perspective of events or transactions that occur in an enterprise.

Desktop Application: Computer software programs used to accomplish a variety of tasks.

Double Jack: The act of plugging two headsets into one telephone set or workstation for the purpose of two persons listening to the same contact.

Envelope Strategy: A strategy whereby enough agents are scheduled for the day or week to handle both the inbound call load and other types of work.

Erlang B: A formula developed by A.K. Erlang, widely used to determine the number of trunks required to handle a known calling load during a one hour period.

Erlang C: Calculates predicted waiting times (delay) based on three things: the number of servers (reps); the number of people waiting to be served (callers); and the average amount of time it takes to serve each person.

Erlang, A.K.: A Danish engineer who worked for the Copenhagen Telephone Company in the early 1900s and developed Erlang B, Erlang C and other telephone traffic engineering formulas.

Erlang: One hour of telephone traffic in an hour of time. For example, if circuits carry 120 minutes of traffic in an hour, that’s two Erlangs.

Error Rate: Either the number of defective transactions or the number of defective steps in a transaction.

Escalation Plan: A plan that specifies actions to be taken when the queue begins to build beyond acceptable levels.

Executive Summary: A brief summary of the key points of a more detailed report or study.

Economies Of Scale: The principle of gaining better efficiencies through larger group sizes. For example, twice as many calls does not require twice as many staff or trunks to handle because of inherent efficiencies of larger offered call loads and larger groups.

E-Mail (Electronic Mail): The transmission, electronically, of letters, memos and messages from one computer to another.

Facsimile / FAX: Technology that scans a document, encodes it, transmits it over a telecommunications circuit, and reproduces it in original form at the receiving end.

Fast Clear Down: A caller who hangs up immediately when they hear a delay announcement.

Fax on Demand: A system that enables callers to request documents, using their telephone keypads.

Flowchart: A step by step diagram of a process.

Flushing Out the Queue: Changing system thresholds so that calls waiting for an agent group are redirected to another group with a shorter queue or available agents.

Full-Time Equivalent: A term used in scheduling and budgeting, whereby the number of scheduled hours is divided by the hours in a full work week.

Gateway: A server dedicated to providing access to a network.

Grade of Service: The probability that a call will not be connected to a system because all trunks are busy.

Gate: An ACD routing division that allows contacts arriving on specific telephone trunks or certain transaction types to be answered by specific groups of employees. Also referred to as split or group.

Handled Calls: The number of calls received and handled by agents or peripheral equipment. Handled calls does not include calls that abandon or receive busy signals.

Handling Time: The time an agent spends in Talk Time and After-Call Work, handling a transaction. Handling Time can also refer to the time it takes for a machine to process a transaction.

Help Desk: A term that generally refers to a call centre set up to handle queries about product installation, usage or problems.

Hit Rate: The number of connected contacts as a percentage of the number of attempts.

Home Agent: An agent that works from home or someplace else other than the actual contact center location.

Imaging: A process whereby documents are scanned into a system and stored electronically.

Interflow: Calls that flow out of the ACD to another site, a voice mail system, or telephone number that is not part of the ACD environment.

Immutable Law: A law of nature that is fundamental, and not changeable (e.g., the law of gravity). In an inbound call centre, the fact that occupancy goes up when service level goes down, is an immutable law.

Incoming Call centre Management: The art of having the right number of skilled people and supporting resources in place at the right times to handle an accurately forecasted workload, at service level and with quality.

Incremental Revenue (Value) Analysis: A methodology that estimates the value (cost and revenue) of adding or subtracting an agent.

Index Factor: In forecasting, a proportion used as a multiplier to adjust another number.

Integrated Services Digital Network: A set of international standards for telephone transmission. ISDN provides an end-to-end digital network, out-of-band signaling, and greater bandwidth than older telephone services.

Inter Exchange Carrier: A long-distance telephone company.

Internal Help Desk: A group that supports other internal agent groups, e.g. for complex or escalated calls.

Internal Response Time: The time it takes an agent group that supports other internal groups (e.g., for complex or escalated tasks) to respond to transactions that do not have to be handled when they arrive

Internet “Call Me” Transaction: A transaction that allows a user to request a callback from the call centre, while exploring a Web page.

Internet “Call Through” Transaction: The ability for callers to click a button on a Web site and be directly connected to an agent while viewing the site

Internet Phone: Technology that enables users of the InternetÍs World Wide Web to place voice telephone calls through the Internet, thus by-passing the long distance network.

Intraflow: See overflow. Invisible Queue. When callers do not know how long the queue is or how fast it is moving.

Judgmental Forecasting: Goes beyond purely statistical techniques and encompasses what people believe is going to happen.

Key Performance Indicator (KPI): The most critical measures of performance in any organization, typically productivity measures.

Key Telephone System: An arrangement of key telephone sets and associated circuitry located on a customer’s premise that permits more than one telephone line to be terminated on one telephone instrument

KSA. Knowledge, skills, and attributes: The overall make-up of an employee from an educational/life experience background, specific skills and capabilities, and personality traits and attributes that may indicate potential success in a particular position or role.

Law of Diminishing Returns: The declining marginal improvements in service level that can be attributed to each additional agent, as successive agents are added.

Load Balancing: Balancing traffic between two or more destinations.

Local Area Network: The connection of multiple computers within a building, so that they can share information, applications and peripherals. See Wide Area Network.

Local Exchange Carrier: Telephone companies responsible for providing local connections and services.

Logged On: A state in which agents have signed on to a system (made their presence known), but may or may not be ready to receive calls.

Long Call: For staffing calculations and traffic engineering purposes, calls that approach or exceed thirty minutes.

Longest Available Agent: A method of distributing calls to the agent who has been sitting idle the longest. With a queue, Longest Available Agent becomes ñNext Available Agent.î

Longest Delay (Oldest Call): The longest time a caller has waited in queue, before abandoning or reaching an agent.

Look Ahead Queuing: The ability for a system or network to examine a secondary queue and evaluate the conditions, before overflowing calls from the primary queue.

Look Back Queuing: The ability for a system or network to look back to the primary queue after the call has been overflowed to a secondary queue, and evaluate the conditions.

Middleware: Software that mediates between different types of hardware and software on a network, so that they can function together.

Modem: A contraction of the terms Modulator/Demodulator. A Modem converts analog signals to digital and vice versa.

Monitoring: Also called Position Monitoring or Service Observing. The process of listening to agents’ telephone calls for the purpose of maintaining quality.

Multilingual Agents: Agents that are fluent in more than one language.

Multimedia: Combining multiple forms of media in the communication of information. Murphy’s Law. If anything can go wrong, it will. Not a good perspective to live by, but worth considering when designing agent groups, routing configurations and disaster recovery plans.

Make Busy: The process of setting a trunk or trunk grup to return a busy tnoe to callers or make other communication paths or equipment unavailable. This technique can be used to downsize the number of incoming contacts to understaffed groups.

MBWA (Management By Walking Around): The common practice in contact centers of supervisors/managers physically walking through the center to observe contact handling and overall performance.

Network Control centre: Also called Traffic Control centre. In a networked call centre environment, where people and equipment monitor real-time conditions across sites, change routing thresholds as necessary, and coordinate events that will impact base staffing levels.

Network Inter-flow: A technology used in multi-site call centre environments to create a more efficient distribution of calls between sites.

Next Available Agent: A call distribution method that sends calls to the next agent who becomes available.

Noise Canceling Headset: Headsets equipped with technology that reduces background noise.

Non ACD In Calls: Inbound calls which are directed to an agent’s extension, rather than to a general group. These may be personal calls or calls from customers who dial the agents’ extension numbers.

Nuisance Call: The situation that occurs when a live contact is made with a potential customer, but no live agent is available to match up with the call, resulting in dead air space to the customer.

Occupancy: Also referred to as agent utilization. The percentage of time agents handle calls versus wait for calls to arrive.

Off The Shelf: Hardware or software programs that are commercially available and ready for use “as is.”

Offered Calls: All of the attempts callers make to reach the call centre.

Off-Peak: Periods of time other than the call centre’s busiest periods. Also a term to describe periods of time when long distance carriers provide lower rates.

Open Ticket: A customer contact (transaction) that has not yet been completed or resolved (closed).

Outsourcing: Contracting some or all call centre services to an outside company.

Overflow: Calls that flow from one group or site to another. More specifically, Intraflow happens when calls flow between agent groups and Interflow is when calls flow out of the ACD to another site.

Pareto Chart: A bar chart that arranges events in order of frequency. Named after 19th century economist Vilfredo Pareto.

PBX/ACD: A PBX that is equipped with ACD functionality.

Peaked Call Arrival: A surge of traffic beyond random variation. It is a spike within a short period of time.

Percent Allocation: A call routing strategy sometimes used in multi-site call centre environments. Calls received in the network are allocated across sites based on user-defined percentages.

Poisson: A formula sometimes used for calculating trunks. Assumes that if callers get busy signals, they keep trying until they successfully get through. Since some callers won’t keep retrying, Poisson can overestimate trunks required.

Pooling Principle: The Pooling Principle states: Any movement in the direction of consolidation of resources will result in improved traffic-carrying efficiency.

Predictive Dialing: A system that automatically places outbound calls and delivers answered calls to agents. When the dialer detects busy signals, answering machines or ring no answer, it puts the number back in queue.

Primary Rate Interface: One of two levels of ISDN service.

Private Branch Exchange: A telephone system located at a customer’s site that handles incoming and outgoing calls.

Private Network: A network made up of circuits for the exclusive use of an organization or group of affiliated organizations

Process: A system of causes.

Profit centre: An accounting term that refers to a department or function in the organization that does not generate profit. See Cost centre.

Public Switched Network: The public telephone network which provides the capability of interconnecting any home or office with any other.

Pacing Algorithm: A set of instructions used by an automated outbound dialer to determine when to initiate a call attempt.

PBX. Private branch exchange: A private telephone exchange located on the user’s premises and connected to the public network via trunks

Predictive Hang-Up: A call attempt initiated at a time when no agent will be available if a call is connected. The call attempt is aborted during the progress and before the customer answers.

Preview Dialer: A device that presents the account information and phone number on the screen to allow the agent to “preview” the information before instructing the dialer to dial (or not dial) the call.

Progressive Dialer: A device that presents the account information and phone number on the screen after the number is dialed.

PSN (Public Switched Network): The public telephone network which provides the capability of connecting any two telephones.

Quantitative Forecasting: Using statistical techniques to forecast future events. The major categories of quantitative forecasting include Time Series and Explanatory approaches.

Queue: Holds callers until an agent becomes available. Queue can also refer to a line or list of items in a system waiting to be processed

Random Call Arrival: The normal, random variation in how incoming calls arrive. See Peaked Call Arrival.

Readerboards: Also called displayboards or wall displays. A visual display, usually mounted on the wall or ceiling, that provides real-time and historical information on queue conditions, agent status and call centre performance.

Real-Time Adherence Software: Software that tracks how closely agents conform to their schedules. See Adherence to Schedule.

Real-Time Data: Information on current conditions. Some “real-time” information is real-time in the strictest sense (e.g., calls in queue and current longest wait).

Real-Time Management: Making adjustments to staffing and thresholds in the systems and network, in response to current queue conditions.

Received Calls: A call detected and seized by a trunk. Received calls will either abandon or be answered by an agent.

Reengineering: A term popularized by management consultant Michael Hammer, which refers to radically redesigning processes to improve efficiency and service.

Response Time: The time it takes the call centre to respond to transactions that do not have to be handled when they arrive (e.g., correspondence or e-mail). See Service Level.

Retrial Tables: Sometimes used to calculate trunks and other system resources required. Retrial. A caller who “retries” when they get a busy signal.

Rostered Staff Factor: Alternatively called an Overlay, Shrink Factor or Shrinkage. Round Robin Distribution. A method of distributing calls to agents according to a predetermined list.

Remote Agent: An agent physically located outside the contact center. These agents are usually connected to the center on an as-needed or scheduled basis to supply additional answering capability.

Ring Delay (Delay Before Answer): A setting that can be made on the ACD-PBX that adjusts the number of rings before the system automatically answers the call.

Recorded Announcement: An announcement heard by callers while waiting in queue.

Scatter Diagram: A chart that graphically depicts the relationship between two variables.

Scheduling Exception: When an agent is involved in an activity outside of the normal, planned schedule.

Script: The written words and logic to be followed in the handling of a contact.

Screen Monitoring: A system capability that enables a supervisor or manager to remotely monitor the activity on agents’ computer terminals.

Screen Pop: A CTI capability. Callers’ records are automatically retrieved (based on ANI or digits entered into the VRU) and delivered to agents, along with the calls.

Screen Refresh: The rate at which real-time information is updated on a display (e.g. every 5 to 15 seconds).

S ervice Bureau: A company that handles inbound or outbound calls for another organization.

Service Level Agreement: Performance objectives reached by consensus between the user and the provider of a service, or between an outsourcer and an organization.

Service Level: Also called Telephone Service Factor, or TSF. The percentage of incoming calls that are answered within a specified threshold: “X% of calls answered in Y seconds.” See Response Time.

Skill-Based Routing: An ACD capability that matches a caller’s specific needs with an agent that has the skills to handle that call, on a real-time basis.

Smooth Call Arrival: Calls that arrive evenly across a period of time. Virtually non-existent in incoming environments.

Special Causes: Variation in a process caused by special circumstances. See Common Causes.

Split: An ACD routing division that allows calls arriving on specific trunks or calls of certain transaction types to be answered by specific groups of employees

Speech Recognition: The capability of a voice processing system to decipher spoken words and phrases.

Supervisor Monitor: Computer monitors that enable supervisors to monitor the call handling statistics of their supervisory groups or teams.

Silent Monitoring: A process that permits a supervisor to listen to both sides of a conversation including an agent and a caller.

Supervisor: The person who has front-line responsibility for a group of agents.

T1 Circuit: A high speed digital circuit used for voice, data or video, with a bandwidth of 1.544 megabits per second. T1 circuits offer the equivalent of twenty-four (24) analog voice trunks.

Talk Time: The time an agent spends with a caller during a transaction. Includes everything from “hello” to “goodbye.”

Telecommuting: Using telecommunications to work from home or other locations instead of at the organization’s premises.

Telephony Applications Programming Interface: CTI protocol developed by Microsoft and Intel.

Telephony Services Application Programming Interface: CTI protocol developed by Novell and AT + T.

Threshold: The point at which an action, change or process takes place.

Tie line: A private circuit that connects two ACDs or PBXs across a wide area.

Toll-Free Service: Enables callers to reach a call centre out of the local calling area without incurring charges.

Touchtone: A trademark of AT + T. See Dual-Tone Multifrequency.

Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol: The protocols that govern the exchange of sequential data. TCP/IP was designed by the U.S. Department of Defense to link dissimilar computers across many kinds of networks.

True Calls Per Hour: Actual calls an individual or group handled divided by occupancy for that period of time.

Trunk: Also called a Line, Exchange Line or Circuit. A telephone circuit linking two switching systems.
Trunk Group: A collection of trunks associated with a single peripheral and usually used for a common purpose.

Traffic Engineering: The art and science of designing facilities and resources to meet user requirements

Traffic Study: A study to determine the levels of traffic that a system is presently handling.

Trunk Load: The load that trunks carry. Includes both Delay and Talk Time.

Trunks Idle: The number of trunks in a trunk group that are non-busy.

Trunks in Service: The number of trunks in the trunk group that are functional.

Unavailable Work State: An agent work state used to identify a mode not associated with handling telephone calls.

Uniform Call Distributor: A simple system that distributes calls to a group of agents and provides some reports.

Upselling: Suggesting to the purchaser of a direct response product that he could add to his original purchase in some value-enhancing way, such as with a useful accessory or a deluxe, more fully-featured model

Universal Agent: Refers to either A) An agent who can handle all types of incoming calls or B) An agent who can handle both inbound and outbound calls.

Virtual Call centre: A distributed call centre that acts as a single site for call handling and reporting purposes.

Visible Queue: When callers know how long the queue that they just entered is, and how fast it is moving (e.g., they hear a system announcement that relays the expected wait time). See Invisible Queue.

Voice Processing: A blanket term that refers to any combination of voice processing technologies, including Voice Mail, Automated Attendant, Audiotex, Voice Response Unit (VRU) and Faxback.

Voice Response Unit: Also called Interactive Voice Response Unit (IVR) or Audio Response Unit (ARU). A VRU responds to caller entered digits or speech recognition in much the same way that a conventional computer responds to keystrokes or clicks of a mouse.

Wide Area Network: The connection of multiple computers across a wide area, normally using digital data circuits.

Workforce Management Software: Software systems that, depending on available modules, forecast call load, calculate staff requirements, organize schedules and track real-time performance of individuals and groups.

Workload: Often used interchangeably with Call Load. Work load can also refer to non-call activities.

World Wide Web: The capability that enables users to access information on the internet in a graphical environment.

Wrap-Up Codes: Codes agents enter into the ACD to identify the types of calls they are handling. The ACD can then generate reports on call types, by handling time, time of day, etc.

Zip Tone: A tone heard before a call arrives, also called a zip tone. Beep tones are sometimes used to announce that a call is being monitored.

Call Centre Acronyms

* ACD: Automatic Call Distributor
* ACS: Automatic Call Sequencer
* ACW: After Call Work
* AHT: Average Handling Time
* AHT: Average Holding Time on Trunks
* ANI: Automatic Number Identification
* ARU: Audio Response Unit
* ASA: Average Speed of Answer
* ATA: Average Time to Abandonment
* ATB: All Trunks Busy
* BRI: Basic Rate Interface
* CCR: Customer Controlled Routing
* CCS: Centum Call Seconds
* CD-ROM: Compact Disc – Read Only Memory
* CED: Caller Entered Digits
* CLI: Calling Line Identity
* CO: Central Office
* CPE: Customer Premises Equipment
* CSR: Customer Sales or Service Representative
* DN: Dialed Number
* DNIS: Dialed Number Identification Service
* DRTV: Direct Response Television
* FX: Foreign Exchange Line
* GOS: Grade of Service
* IS: Information Systems
* ISD: Integrated Services Digital Network
* IT: Information Technology
* IVR: Interactive Voice Response
* IXC: Inter Exchange Carrier
* LAN: Local Area Network
* LEC: Local Exchange Carrier
* LED: Light Emitting Diode
* MAC: Moves, Adds and Changes
* MAN: Metropolitan Area Network
* NCC: Network Control centre
* NPA: Numbering Plan Area
* OCR: Optical Character Recognition
* PABX: Private Automatic Branch Exchange
* PBX: Private Branch Exchange
* PRI: Primary Rate Interface
* PSTN: Public Switched Telephone Network
* PUC: Public Utility Commission
* RAN: Recorded Announcement Route
* RFI: Request for Information
* RFP: Request for Proposal
* RSF: Rostered Staff Factor
* TAPI: Telephony Applications Programming Interface
* TCP/IP: Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol
* TSAPI: Telephony Services Application Programming Interface
* TSF: Telephone Service Factor
* TSR: Telephone Sales or Service Representative
* UCD: Uniform Call Distributor
* VRU: Voice Response Unit
* WAN: Wide Area Network
* WATS: Wide Area Telecommunications Service
* WWW: World Wide Web

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