VirtualPBX Customers Test Advanced Call Reports Beta
At the close of 2019, VirtualPBX opened up its new Advanced Call Reports online software to a handful of existing customers as part of a beta test.
Those customers, after using Advanced Call Reports for several months, were then kind enough to provide feedback to VirtualPBX in an internal survey about their experiences. Their willingness to become software early-adopters and their responses to the survey have been instrumental to the success and continued development of this reporting tool.
Structure of VirtualPBX Advanced Call Reports
Advanced Call Reports allows users of VirtualPBX Phone Plans to create automated, detailed reports about their phone system usage.
System administrators can build reports from a number of pre-built types, including Call List, Caller ID, and Queue (for use with the VirtualPBX ACD Queues feature).
Those reports can then be customized by using filters that narrow the data, including Date Range and Filter by DNS.
Each report is then available for delivery to email inboxes on a regular schedule or for viewing on-demand in the online dashboard.
MESA Supplies and Nationwide Senior
For both these VirtualPBX clients, their report of choice is the Call List, which provides multiple categories of information.
Call List reports may include the time and date a call was placed, ring time and duration, caller’s phone number, and whether a call was Internal, Incoming, or Outgoing.
For MESA Supplies, this fine-grained data has been helpful in determining where calls originated from. And for Nationwide Senior, the data has proved an essential component of Sales Team reports to see how many calls individuals are placing and receiving.
The power of each of those report benefits was described by the individual clients in comments about how they use filters to segment the data.
MESA Supplies prefers to filter by DNIS – a method of identifying inbound calls by their originally-dialed number. MESA’s marketing representative Kathy Sechrist noted, “We have multiple incoming numbers for different purposes. [Filtering by DNIS] allows me to track results by the original incoming number.”
This can be useful for campaigns where, for instance, one toll-free number is used with a particular marketing campaign and a second number would be used with an entirely different campaign. Filter by DNIS sorts the campaigns by selecting for a particular number.
Nationwide Senior looks to its Sales Team by using the Date Range filter. Claims specialist Chris Laliberte commented that weekly reports are generated about “the [Nationwide] Sales Team to document how many calls they’re making/receiving and how long they spend on the phone.”
Chris also remarked that this type of report has been useful enough to consider using with multiple departments. With Advanced Call Reports’ ability to clone reports in a single click, replicating effective reports for similar situations should be easy for any business to accomplish.
Getting Started, Working Through Issues
Since each of these clients is working through a beta test of the online software, VirtualPBX also asked for feedback about the training and followup provided to them.
In particular, VirtualPBX brought it upon itself to dedicate senior engineers to assist MESA Supplies and Nationwide Senior with anything they needed. This one-on-one attention helped the clients get started with software and was available for future troubleshooting in the weeks following.
Switching to VirtualPBX Dash
Of the pair, MESA’s Sechrist seemed to have the most difficulty in the early stages. Sechrist said they were used to the reporting capabilities of VirtualPBX’s vConsole phone system, which MESA Supplies had recently upgraded from to the new VirtualPBX Dash platform.
VirtualPBX provides all its Dash customers with personalized onboarding and training for their staff members. Customers’ devices and settings are migrated and configured to meet their needs. For larger companies, learning both Dash and the Advanced Call Reports tool can take more time, but the dedication from VirtualPBX staff is there for however many employees wish to learn their new tools.
Dash operates differently as a phone system – and produces call logs differently – than its vConsole predecessor. Dash is much more extensible and will rely on Advanced Call Reports as a tool for completing the heavy lifting of reporting tasks.
“It seems like there were lots of hurdles,” Sechrist said of the transition and getting used to the new Advanced Call Reports software, noting that their time is “very limited.”
“Several VirtualPBX staff have really helped me a lot,” Sechrist continued, “and I am very appreciative of them.
“If they hadn’t stepped up, I would have been really upset.”
The process for MESA is ongoing. Sechrist noted that future ambitions include configuring ACD Queues reports to match inbound calls to individual Sales representatives. Sechrist’s hope is to “iron out the wrinkles and finally get everything I need” from the new platform, but time limitations have made this a work in progress.
Smooth From the Outset
In contrast, Laliberte commented that the process has moved much more smoothly for Nationwide Senior.
“We have used Call Reports since the beginning,” Laliberte said. “This was a new project for us.”
This was not a transition from any other type of reporting program for the company. Instead, Laliberte said they relied on VirtualPBX live training and follow-up, which was described as “excellent” and allowed Nationwide Senior to “run all the queries that were needed and expected” to keep track of inbound calls.
The Process of Beta
The information MESA Supplies and Nationwide Senior provided about their experiences is significant in a number of ways.
First, it shows how each business, distinct in its own way, was helped by the documentation and training offered by VirtualPBX staff. Their comments are a direct reflection of VirtualPBX staff performance and fit within the training stage of the beta release.
Next, each company’s representative’s comments offer a snapshot of their experiences with the software – allowing VirtualPBX to see how the software met or failed to meet the expectations of its users. Since this is a private test before taking Advanced Call Reports public, VirtualPBX is able to gain invaluable data about which aspects of the software work and which aspects need to be improved.
Finally, since each company was asked to state how it would improve the software beyond its working capabilities, VirtualPBX was also able to see what potential new features could be added to future releases of the product. What was gained from MESA and Nationwide included the desire for features involving call recordings and data separation by specific types.
We want to offer the best communications software on the market. Moreover, we want our customer experiences with our Business Phone Plans and Advanced Call Reports to be a step above.
It’s exciting to read about how helpful the beta process has been for both these important clients. The Reports online software is working well for both of them. And despite any detours this testing process has taken, it appears as if MESA and Nationwide have used Reports to improve their business operations for the better.
Our tasks, from this point forward, are first to continue to help our beta testers with anything they need and second to internalize their criticisms about this journey. We’re active 24/7 with our Support team, and our dedicated Beta Program staff members are in constant contact with MESA and Nationwide as they continue working with this reporting tool.
Meanwhile, we’ll be working through bugs and completing upgrades to Reports. We’re happy to have feedback about how our company and its software can be improved. This is another great opportunity to better meet the needs of our clients and future adopters.