Dear Sir or Madam,Today you are receiving our first newsletter based on the new concept: delivered on a quarterly basis, with more information for readers who are not familiar with our products, specific examples for deploying our solutions and – if available – reports on the latest technical innovations and news from our sector.
Here’s an overview of the topics:
We hope you enjoy reading our newsletter.
Your Clarity AG
Our software development activities are always focused on the wishes and requirements of our customers, which means every customer request is recorded and analyzed in detail. Below you will find a brief overview of the latest features that were implemented during the first half of 2012:
Starting with Release 3.1.0 it is possible to automatically delete the log files stored on the system. The deletion is based on criteria chosen by the administrator (for example, according to a specific time schedule or when the hard drive exceeds a certain value in relation to available storage capacity).
Recognition of DTMF key tones is now faster. Callers who are already aware of a certain menu can now enter the required sequence of numbers without having to listen to the entire message. Recognition is based on SIP RFC 2833, the standard protocol for DTMF.
The latest Release includes the so-called SIP Fork function, which enables also agents to copy a call to a specific extension. This feature can be very useful, for example, when a user is on the go somewhere in the office with the mobile handset of another extension. If a call is received, both the desktop telephone and the mobile handset will ring. If another call is received while the person is still talking, the caller will hear the engaged tone.
The Personal Assistant (PA) function has also been extended. In the past, when this function was used, all calls for a specific manager (with the exception of numbers), which had been entered on a VIP list, were forwarded directly to his or her PA. Multiple managers can now, however, forward their calls to a single Personal Assistant. What’s more, the PA of one manager can dial the number of another manager directly, without landing at the reception. Personal Assistants can now also log on directly via the desktop telephone.
Calls forwarded to a specific extension, which are not answered, are now routed back to the employee who took the original call. For example: a customer would like to speak to Mr. Mueller, Ms. Wagner connects him without actually speaking to Mr. Mueller. If the call remains unanswered for a specific amount of time (which is configured by the administrator), the call is routed back to Ms. Wagner. This, in turn, ensures the caller does not end up in “Nirvana”. This function is primarily geared towards office use and is less important for call centers.
The Clarity Contact Manager, our virtual telephone exchange, has now been integrated into the Clarity Communication Client. Callers simply name the desired person or department and are then forwarded directly and reliably by the Clarity Contact Manager with the help of the latest voice recognition technology. This helps to relieve the burden on a company’s telephone exchange during peak periods, reduces waiting times and saves money.
Another request of our customers, which involved an extension to the forwarding options for agents who are on break, has also been implemented. The options for managing conferences have also been improved, and it’s now possible to register for a hotline via a mobile telephone.
Do you have any questions regarding the new features, or would you like to receive an offer for an update? Do you have any other suggestions? We look forward to receiving your feedback!
Only a few more weeks to go before the transitional arrangements on free call queueing come into force according to German law.
Below you will find an excerpt regarding the basic rules of the new Telecommunications Act (TA): “Queues may now only be used without restrictions in relation to local telephone network numbers, standard mobile telecommunication numbers and toll-free numbers. In all other cases (i. e. all special telephone numbers), call queues may only be used if the call is subject to a fixed price or (with time-based billing) the callee covers the costs while the caller is in the call queue. In doing so, the callee must ensure the caller is informed about the probable length of time that they will be in the queue at the beginning of the call, and also whether the call is subject to a fixed price or whether the costs for the call will be covered by the callee while the caller is in the queue. Violations against the new queue rule will be subject to a fine. Furthermore, the caller will not be obliged to pay for the call in the event of a violation. The rule will come into effect one year after enactment of the regulation regarding the amendment of the telecommunications law.” (1. June 2013)
The transitional arrangement will apply until June 2013: “According to this, call queues may only be used in relation to chargeable calls if the first two minutes of the connection, which start when the call is established, are free of charge (toll-free) for the caller. In such a case, the toll-free period ends two minutes after the establishment of the call, at the latest. This period ends earlier if the caller leaves the queue within these first two minutes. Special obligations regarding the provision of information on queue durations and call charges do not apply during this transitional period. Violations against the transitional rule will be subject to a fine. The transitional rule will come into effect three months after enactment of the regulation regarding the amendment of the telecommunications law.” * 1. September 2012 is therefore the start date.
The technical implementation of the free 2-minute call queue is handled using a delayed connect: the return signal for establishing the connection is suppressed during these two minutes. It will not be possible to speak to the person during this time, and the caller will simply hear a ringing tone, a message or music.
It goes without saying that we, as an innovative provider of telecommunications solutions, want to provide more than just a simple ringing tone or music to tide over the waiting time. Read on to find out about the communicative options that we have developed to improve this situation.
If you require further information on the new call queue rule and the practical implementation of this, please feel free to contact us:
* Quote source: Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and Technology
First you dial. Then you wait. And you don’t hear the service employee or whoever it is you are calling. You simply hear lounge music, sound compositions or the company’s marketing and advertising jargon. Such tactics are not to everyone’s taste, and they certainly aren’t very good for your blood pressure.
But there is a better way! Clarity offers functions for the call queues of contact centers, which are sensible, informative and a lot more customer friendly.
For example, callers can be provided with information such as when they will be connected with a contact center employee. The caller is informed about the approximate waiting time, which is calculated using a special algorithm. They can then decide whether they wish to hold the line or call back later. The system is very flexible: the administrator can, for example, define how long the system waits before providing the caller with information regarding the expected waiting time.
Another new feature provides the caller with the option of being called back. The system then informs an agent/employee or the caller details are entered into a so-called “To-Call-Pool”.
A third new Clarity function provides the ability to integrate daily news streams into the call queue. Callers then view the waiting period as an informative break instead of a waste of time, which, in turn, helps to improve their opinion of the company.
We would be more than happy to provide you with additional, detailed information!
Within the software-based Clarity Communication Center, telephone conferences can now be replaced by videoconferences, if required: all telephone functions, such as call waiting, holding or forwarding, are supported by the video plugin. The conference manager can see all participants; the participants can however only see the conference manager and not each other.
The videoconference tool offers a high level of security and transmission quality, and the number of videoconference participants is only limited by the performance of the computer and the bandwidth provided by the conference host.
Many readers may still be in holiday mode when this newsletter is released, but we all have to return home sooner or later, and usually with a camera crammed full of photos. The question is: what should we do with these photos now? The answer: work on them with Photoshop Lightroom 4. This software allows you to get the most from your photos with a minimal amount of effort and maximum stylistic control. They are simply imported into Lightroom and then corrected, optimized and organized using the intuitive tools. Location tags can be assigned and location data from GPS-capable cameras and mobile phone cameras is displayed automatically. Create slide shows, photo albums and Web galleries and print out or upload your snapshots to social networks.
We have three copies of this comprehensive and easy-to-use professional software to give away on DVD. To take part in the competition, simply send an e-mail with “Lightroom” in the subject line to firstname.lastname@example.org. Entry deadline is 31. August 2012. The judge’s decision is final. Good luck!