We are a small call center (20 agents) looking for an ACD reporting package that doesn't cost an
arm and a leg. All we want is the ability to track total number of incoming calls, number of calls
received at each extension, abandoned calls, and hold times. We want the "Ford Escort without the
radio", not the Cadillac. However, our phone system provider keeps pitching high end solutions
containing more features than we need. Is there a low cost, quality solution, and if so, is there a
way to do it without our phone system provider's interference?
Most providers of call center reporting packages have focused their products on the large call center market. The reason for this is fairly simple: it is often difficult and expensive to efficiently sell and service small to mid-size enterprises (1-100 agents). For most developers, particularly those with a direct distribution model, it's far more efficient to focus on a few large call centers than to find many small ones.
Complicating this further is the interface to your phone system. Without knowing your phone system's manufacturer, I can't tell you whether you need additional hardware or software to enable your phone system to output the necessary data used by reporting software. Be sure to consider that as you evaluate options.
Most phone systems today that offer built-in ACD functionality generally also offer some basic reporting capabilities (suggest investigating that option with your manufacturer or distributor). There are also more advanced ACD systems designed (and priced) specifically for call centers of your size that offer surprisingly robust reporting options'but that would mean swapping out your current ACD and possibly hardware. Unfortunately, I don't know of any reporting-only packages that fit your need.
This was first published in February 2002