Virtual PBXtm Announces Skills-based Call Routing and Integrated Conferencing Features for Hosted Phone Service
new capabilities immediately available for small businesses and companies with distributed employees
SAN JOSE, CALIF. (October 25, 2004) – Virtual PBX®, the leading supplier of hosted PBX services to small- and medium-sized businesses, today announced a broad range of new capabilities, including skills-based call routing, real-time system monitoring, and integrated on-demand conferencing to the VirtualPBX service. The new capabilities, which are available now, have been provided to existing customers without charge.
Now, for the first time, small businesses and companies with distributed employees can route incoming calls to their most skilled employees, said Paul Hammond, CEO of Virtual PBX. With our hosted solution there is no capital expense, so even small companies can afford to give their callers the best service. And since we can route calls to any phone, anywhere in the world, you don’t have to work in a central office to get all the capabilities of a truly advanced phone system.
Hammond added that because Virtual PBX offers PBX functionality as a hosted service there is no hardware or software to install or maintain, so users can eliminate PBX capital expenditures and greatly reduce support costs. He said that the VirtualPBX Service answers incoming calls for client businesses, and then routes the calls to employees wherever they are currently working, whether to an office phone, a cellular phone, or a home office phone. Unlike premise-based PBX equipment, there is no need for a direct connection to the telephone to which the call is routed. Hammond said that the primary targets for the new capabilities are small businesses and virtual call centers.
Virtual PBX has been a leader in the hosted PBX space for quite some time, stated Jonathan Spira, President and Chief Analyst of Basex, Inc., a research firm specializing in telecommunications and collaboration tools. This new release continues their tradition of leadership with advanced functionality such as skills-based routing.
skills-based call routing
Skills-based call routing allows call center managers and other business owners to be certain that incoming calls are answered most frequently by the employees with the best call handling skills. Administrators can set up multiple Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) queues, and assign a ranking to each employee that is a member of each queue. Incoming calls to the queue are then routed first to the agents with the highest ranking. If all of these agents are busy, employees with lesser skills can be automatically assigned to help with call volume. Skills based routing lets companies make the most out of their best human resources. It also gives learning time to new employees, while keeping them available to help with heavy call loads.
This is an outstanding feature for call centers, but it’s also great for small businesses, said Greg Brashier, VP of Marketing for Virtual PBX. Companies can assign the highest priority to sales and support personnel, and lower priority to people in other parts of the business. The calls will be answered by the right employees whenever they are available, but management and others can help whenever they are needed.
On-demand conferencing enables every extension owner in a business to have a private teleconference at any time, with no scheduling and no PIN numbers. Conference hosts tell conference attendees to select the conference option at the main greeting (one digit), and then dial the host’s extension number to be put into the conference. The conference does not need to be scheduled in advance, because the VirtualPBX service provides for a nearly unlimited number of simultaneous conferences. Callers don’t need to remember security codes unless the extension owner wants to password-protect the conference.
The new release also gives customers the ability to monitor call traffic in real-time, on the web. System administrators can check on call volume, see how many callers are on hold, how long the wait is, which employees are logged in and answering calls, and much more. This capability tells managers what’s happening as it happens. Detailed call records are also kept, so managers can look both at present activity and call history to improve business performance.
about virtual pbx
Virtual PBX.com®, Inc., pioneered the hosted PBX market, introducing the first service of this class in 1997. Virtual PBX utilizes the public switched telephone network and the internet to provide PBX functionality as a hosted service. The three primary uses for Virtual PBX services are: small businesses that want full PBX functionality without the capital and support expense of installed equipment; companies of any size that need to route calls to telecommuters or other employees outside of a main office; and enterprises looking for phone system disaster recovery solutions. Additional information about VirtualPBX.com, Inc., can be found at virtualpbx.com.