Covid-19 and how to get the most out of your Phone System

Covid-19 and how to get the most out of your Phone System

Remote Working

 

In these uncertain times, Businesses need to keep staff working and mobilised through remote working and you need your telecommunications to work as if you where in the office.

Customers need to be able to contact your business and have up to date information on your opening hours, service and access to speak to a member of staff. Your employees need the technology to work from home and have access to all the features they are used to having when based in the office.

How your Phone System can help your Business during Covid 19 

Auto-Attendant

Auto-Attendant (or automated attendant) is a term commonly used in telephony to describe a voice menu system that allows callers to be transferred to an extension without going through a telephone operator or receptionist. The auto-attendant is also known as a digital receptionist. You can create custom menus with multiple greetings.

  • Per department
  • Per location
  • Per Extension Number or Staff Member

 

Softphone 

A soft phone is an application you install on your PC, Laptop or tablet. This application replicates the features of your desk phone and make and receive external and internal calls. You will have the ability to function exactly the same way as you would i the office on your desk phone with ring groups, transfer, hold, voicemail and many more features.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mobile App

A mobile App with act as your extension number off the phone system giving you the ability to work from home or anywhere on the move. You will be able to make and receive calls, hold and transfer. The app will also give you the ability to be part of any ring groups and over flows during busy times.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Your Phone System can help your business and staff to operate outside the office ans also give customers access to information and your employyes for busoness continuty.

If you would like to know more you can contact sales@conversationpiece.ie or Free Phone 1800-300-677

IVR Phone Systems: Save Time with Interactive Response Technology

IVR Phone Systems: Save Time with Interactive Response Technology

Were IVR Phone Systems on Alexander Graham Bell’s radar when he called Mr. Watson to “come here”? Most likely he never entertained the idea. But we did! Conversation Piece has been supplying SMEs and very large enterprises with telecommunications solutions for more than 40 years. Since the beginning, we have been players in advanced telephony systems, and have been forerunners in Ireland in the fields of VoIP, Cloud PBX, and Hosted PBX phone systems.

Telephony SystemsInteractive Voice Response, is not new. Since the early 1970’s, it has been utilised by businesses to save time transferring telephone calls to the correct employee. Always ahead of the game, Conversation Piece has led the way in Ireland with state-of-the-art voice and data services, and have brought IVR technology to a new level. We have the experience and the expertise to provide our customers with leading-edge solutions, yet we take note of our clients’ special business requirements, and customise the most appropriate services to suit each enterprise.

What is Interactive Voice Response?

An Interactive Voice Response system is based on a call flow chart/tree system of recorded voice menus that respond to touch-tone activation from the caller’s phone. The system works with Dual Tone Multiple Frequency (DTMF) telephony systems. It lets a customer find the correct department in your business by navigating the automated telephony system that systematically filters the caller’s choices, and finds the required agent. Hardware, software, apps, and various protocols all play a roll in the workings of the phone system.

An Automated Telephony System for the 21st century

Interactive Voice Response technology is moving away from entertaining the public with annoying music while on hold. Likewise, “Press 2 for a Sales Representative”, and a list of numerous hard-to-remember choices, will soon be a thing of the past. Instead, callers are increasingly offered options that make sense to them. The IVR medium is no longer restricted to DTMF numbered options, but now also incorporates other technologies and software, such as voice recognition, AI, and Interactive Voice Response systems for call centres, no matter how small or large your enterprise may be. Machine learning technology will soon become the norm, allowing the system to sift through basic enquiries using Natural Language Processing, and letting only the more complicated queries reach the agents. Simply tap away through the menus on your mobile phone.

Benefits of Interactive Voice Response

There have always been many advantages for businesses using these systems. With the latest advances in technology, benefits are on the rise. The following are just a few reasons for considering an IVR phone system:

  • Efficiency: B2B communications are global. The world of business never stands still. Clients that require a service such as support, no longer find recordings of the company’s business hours to be acceptable. They need immediate responses to their calls. If well-designed, an IVR phone system covers all bases by being there for your clients, 24 hours a day.
    • Automation: It can be designed to represent the degree of automation that works for your enterprise, whether fully automatic, semi-automatic or a combination of various telecommunication systems.
  • Call-handling: It can cope with high-traffic call-handling, especially when the system is well-designed for the prevention of long customer waiting periods.
  • Keeping track: The ability to collect statistics from calls is not always considered when looking into a telephony system. However, tracking can provide you with leads, inform you about heavy traffic periods, and give you visibility into the types of calls your system is fielding.
  • Time and money: The savings of both time and expenses rank high in their importance as a benefits. The number of transferred calls can be reduced by letting the software act as an electronic “FAQ”. If personal data is required, this can be collected by the IVR program, and made immediately accessible to the agent when the call is finally transferred to him. This kind of time-saving is invaluable to your business. Unified Communications can be a major player in savings for both you and your customers.
  • Personalised menus: They can be as flexible as you wish. Menus can consist of multiple-language options, for example, making customers feel most comfortable in their mother tongues, and assisting them to navigate their routes through the system.

Benefits of working with Conversation Piece

ivr dublin

Although IVR systems have been successfully connecting consumers and businesses for decades, the system has also generated complaints over the years, especially if waiting times are long, or the correct party is not found. The solution to eliminating problems like these is professional design.

When it comes to professional design practices, you’re in good hands at Conversation Piece. Here’s why:

  • Over 5000 companies across Ireland have decided they can trust Conversation Piece. Our solutions cover a broad spectrum of verticals, including IT, the public sector, and manufacturing. Our clients include the likes of Clonmel Healthcare, Crowleys DFK, and Cash & Carry Kitchens. We also use top-of-the line equipment, and are particularly proud of our association with Panasonic Phone Systems, Ireland.
  • Owner, Jim Dunne, as well as members of his family, never cease to learn more about the field of telecommunications. They are constantly updating their skills and familiarising themselves with the latest developments in this ever-changing arena.
  • We listen and we are flexible. We can develop customised solutions for your business, making sure that you get what works well for you.
  • Aside from our capable full-time employees, we have excellent working relationships with a score of professionals on contract, who will work with us on projects that require specialty training outside of our arena. This gives our solutions an unbeatable amount of scope.
  • Our fleet of vehicles takes us all over Ireland, so our projects are not restricted to our main locations in Cork City and Dublin.
  • Our solutions are very scalable. We design systems for very large-scale enterprises, medium and small businesses, and can even scale down to a one-man-show. As your company grows, we can scale the capabilities of your system. Scalability and intelligent solutions are the keys to the professional presence of your business, no matter how large or small it may be.

Types of IVR systems

cloud ivr

IVR solutions don’t all work the same way. At Conversation Piece, we ensure that your IVR package will suit your requirements. However, IVR systems can be defined in a number of ways that are not mutually exclusive. As well, the telephony can consist of various intermixed components, such as PBX, Sip Trunks, the Cloud, and VoIP.

Inbound and Outbound IVR

Inbound IVR refers to the response the caller receives when dialing one of your company phone numbers. This response may begin with a general welcome message, which is followed by menu routing options.

Outbound IVR refers to a message your company sends out to a list of phone numbers. This can take the form of advertising and promotions, or may be a public message with regards to changes in policies.

Visual IVR

Visual IVR uses the screen of your client’s mobile phone to provide him with menu options for navigating your IVR phone system.

Hosted IVR

Hosted IVR is IVR that is hosted on the Cloud, as opposed to the PBX equipment inside your premises. However, IVR is often referred to as Hosted IVR, and Cloud supported IVR is then referred to as Cloud-Hosted IVR. Either way, you can choose between a system that is cloud-based or PBX-based. Both systems will provide the functionality and apps that work with IVR.

SIP IVR

Many PBX IVR solutions can work with VoIP. (Note that Skype is an exception.) Some PBX systems support VoIP, in any case. As Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) is the communication protocol for VoIP, adding a SIP Trunk means that your business will be able to handle more than 23 calls at any one time. The SIP IVR will work with VoIP, and the IVR can also communicate with other SIP devices.

FAQ

 

What does IVR stand for?

Interactive Voice Response.

What is IVR used for?

IVR phone systems are used for banking, billing, shopping, booking appointments, B2B communications, travel plans, stock market activities, making reservations, ordering food, and much more.

What is an IVR menu?

An IVR menu is a branch of a navigation tree that forms the structure of the responsive part of an IVR telephony system. An IVR menu uses the structure of a flow chart, because it starts with an initial question, then works its way down, filtering options along the way. For example, if you reach the Diagnostic Testing Appointments of a hospital, the menu may provide options for you to choose from X-rays, ultrasound, or blood tests.

What is multi-level IVR?

Multi-level IVR incorporates a number of IVR paths within one larger system. This is different to single-level IVR, which may present a caller with one set of options, any of which will bring him to his destination. Multi-level IVR drills down to your final destination, by providing you with further options along the way, which are based on choices you make on each path.

What is SMART IVR?

SMART IVR will intuitively route the caller to the most appropriate team or agent. This will probably necessitate the use of multi-level IVR, so that SMART options can be presented to the caller while he navigates the system. This type of system requires very careful planning and design. It often also incorporates “personal” language styles, such as addressing the caller by his name, in order to encourage the caller and help him arrive at the correct destination.

Can IVR authenticate a caller like a live agent would?

Yes. Typically, a one- or two-part process ought to be sufficient. If authentication requires too many steps, this can turn a caller away from the IVR system.

Interested in a quote?

When a potential lead makes that first contact with your business by telephone, his first impression is the most important one, and can make the difference between conversion or not. IVR is a tool that can paint your SME or large enterprise with the mantle of professionalism.

Our team of experts at Conversation Piece are happy to answer any questions about our IVR options and any other telephony services we provide. There are a number of ways to reach us: by phone, email, or our contact page.

Ask for a quote now. We look forward to your call.

VoIP for Business

VoIP for Business

 

VoIP for Business – VoIP is an acronym for Voice Over Internet Protocol, or in more common terms making your phone calls over a internet or broadband connection. VoIP can work along with your existing PSTN or ISDN lines but usually these lines would be replaced with a dedicated internet connection that will be connected to your phone system.

Why VoIP for Business and what are the Advantages

Lower Costs

The main reason most businesses consider VoIP is the cost savings. VoIP calls National and Internationally are up to 60% cheaper compared to traditional landlines. When you add in you dont need your PSTN, ISDN or PRAs the savings dramatically increase and businesses can save 000’s every year.

Existing Numbers

All your existing phone numbers can be ported to VoIP with no changes or downtime. VoIP also gives you the added benefit of using phone numbers from any where in the world so your business can be based locally but have UK, US number etc operated locally from Ireland.

Resilience

VoIP offers a lot more resilience than traditional phone lines because  if there is an issue with your phone system or broadband  the numbers can be diverted to another number or mobile in a matter of minutes. 4G or LTE backup is also available now where your phone system provider can install a 4g sim card as back up to your VoIP connection so your business will not be with phones.

Mobility

In the modern business environment not everyone is desk based or office based, VoIP enables employees to work from anywhere because once they have a mobile phone or PC. This allows employees to be connected to the office and customers from anywhere at anytime.

Cloud based PBX and Features

VoIP also give you access to Cloud based phone system, applications and unified comms features including voice-mail to email, IVR, Mobile apps, Softphones and API Integration with CRMs. A number of providers also offer privately-managed network functionality on the cloud so your communications never travels on the public internet.

Scalability

Scalability is another advantage of VoIP that make it an attractive proposition for any growing businesses. With VoIP if you want to increase the number of channels/lines for you business its only a matter of licensing as you need them, you dont have to wait for installation of traditional lines and the added cost of a monthly line rental.

If you would like to know more you can contact seamus.dunne@conversationpiece.ie or Free Phone 1800-300-677

 

What is a Cloud Phone System

What is a Cloud Phone System

What is a Cloud Phone System?

Cloud Phone System:

A cloud phone system is a Voice over IP (VoIP) based business telephone system platform that is hosted by a third-party provider such as Conversation Piece. Cloud phone systems offer enterprise level resilience, security and phone system features such as: Mobile Apps, Soft phones, Hunt Groups and many more features.

Advantages of a Cloud Phone System:

  1. Lower Costs

Cloud phone systems are a lower CAPEX cost for businesses compared to purchasing on premise phone system. The cloud and VoIP will also reduce the cost of your line renal and calls by up to 60%.because you are using an internet connection instead of ISDN lines.

  1. Features

The Cloud is a gateway to applications and unified comms features including voice-mail to email, IVR, Mobile apps, Softphones and API Integration with CRMs. A number of providers also offer privately-managed network functionality on the cloud so your communications never travels on the public internet.

  1. Mobility

In the modern business environment not everyone is desk based or office based, the cloud enables employees to work from anywhere because once they have a mobile phone or PC. This allows employees to be connected to the office and customers from anywhere at anytime.

  1. Reliability

Cloud-based phone systems offer 99% up time and are based across multiple servers and data centres. This offers a lot more resilience than an on site phone system. The cloud ensures that your business communications are open 24/7—but it also provides great peace of mind in the event of a disaster. In any event, the Cloud is a great safeguard for continual ‘business voice’ presence even in those unforeseen circumstances.

  1. Fewer IT Difficulties

Cloud phone systems, are managed by the service provider, off-site, meaning that your business’s IT personnel or specialist will be able to delete ‘phone system maintenance’ from their to-do list and concentrate on business goal-related IT issues.

  1. Enhanced Data Security

The prospect of putting company data outside the business’s firewall can be daunting, but the Cloud removes such concerns. In fact, data protection is reinforced by the Cloud, due to ISO security standards that service providers abide by.

If you would like to know more you can contact seamus.dunne@conversationpiece.ie or Free Phone 1800-300-677

CONVERSATION PIECE AGREES €1.5M DEAL WITH AGILITY COMMUNICATIONS

CONVERSATION PIECE AGREES €1.5M DEAL WITH AGILITY COMMUNICATIONS

Conversation Piece, a provider of on-site and cloud phone systems to businesses throughout Ireland, has signed a deal worth €1.5 million with Irish wholesale telecoms company, Agility Communications.

The new agreement is expected to generate up to 10 new jobs across both companies and runs over the next three years.

The deal will allow Conversation Piece to deliver enterprise-level VoIP, telephony and cloud phone system products to its customers over Agility Communication’s network. As a nationwide Tier 1 network, Conversation Piece’s customers can also avail of Agility’s dedicated gigabyte fibre broadband anywhere in Ireland.

Conversation Piece celebrates 40 years in business this year and currently employs 15 people in its Dublin and Cork offices. As business telecommunications specialists, it provides both cloud-based and traditional PBX phone systems as well as VOIP, with local technical support throughout Ireland. Customers include SMEs and multinationals across a wide range of industries nationwide.

Speaking of the deal, Seamus Dunne, Sales Manager for Conversation Piece said: “Our customers have come to rely on us to deliver reliable, affordable and easily scalable voice and data services for decades. We’ve worked with Agility since 2015 and find the quality of service it delivers to be unparalleled. It has been a key part of our growth over the past few years and this new deal will help accelerate this growth further.”

Shane Tully, Head of Carrier Services at Agility Communications, speaks of the significance of the deal: “Our continued investment in our carrier infrastructure enables us to deliver top-level voice and data solutions to our partners, who in turn can provide the highest quality phone and broadband services to their customers at some of the most competitive rates on the market. The deal is significant for both companies. Not only does it ensure continued growth and new jobs but it enables Irish SMEs to avail of industry-leading telecoms solutions they can trust.”

Based in Dublin, Agility Communications provides wholesale line rental, VoIP services, fibre broadband connections and MPLS solutions to reseller partners.

The company has invested significantly in building a full-featured network architecture to provide its partners with a robust and flexible infrastructure that is constantly monitored by a team of engineers to ensure 24/7 connectivity.