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July 06, 2012

BPO - Call Centre - More Jargon, Jargon, Jargon

1.      Call Blending: A technique to mix Inbound and outbound calls for specific agents. Smooths out the peak nature of demand for inbound call patterns by feeding outbound calls of a similar call type to Agents during quiet periods.

2.      CEM - Customer Experience Management: The appliance of an over-riding theme, company ethos or approach, irrespective of the means of contact.

3.      Coach: The person who provides additional support and technical knowledge to Agents. (In addition to the Team Leader). Also known as a buddy.

4.      CLI (Calling Line Identity): A telephone technology that displays the number where customer is calling from. This number can be used by CTI software to match up to a computer record for that caller.

5.      Call Recording: A solution to implement an effective call handling quality process. Can involve the recording and storage of calls and data relating to financial or legal transactions.

6.      DMS (Document Management System): Many Call Centres handle large amounts of incoming mail, which is opened and scanned by DMS for electronic distribution as part of a workflow process for managing correspondence.

7.      DNIS - Dialled Number Identification Service: A feature of the telephony network to re-present a callers telephony number to the called party.

8.      Intra Day Statistics: Reports that provide details of what is happening in the Call Centre at particular times of the day – often broken down into thirty minute periods

9.      IVR (Interactive Voice Response): Asks customers to press a button on their telephone key pad to select which service they want. The technology then routes the call to the most appropriate agent to handle the enquiry! Or it can ask customers to use their own telephone keypad to key information that will help the agent to validate who they are e.g. account numbers.

10.  Knowledge Management System: A desktop application that Agents use as source of information to provide the answers to customer enquiries. As the range of enquiries that an agent may have to handle is large, or the responses may change regularly, then the Knowledge Management System acts as a single source of content for the centre to use.

11.  KPI - Key Performance Indicator: A (percentage) measure of (work) volume versus success criteria, by which the relative performance of a work unit is measured.

12.  Multi-lingual Agents: Agents that are skilled in handling calls in more than one language.

13.  Multi Skilling: An agent who can handle several different types of call, - different call types e.g. sales and service.

14.  One and Done: The ability for the customer transaction to be completed by the Agent in a single call.

15.  Outsourcing: The sharing of call centre activities e.g. peak call loads or certain call types, with a third party specialist company who can manage the calls on your behalf. Outsourcers can provide both inbound response and outbound campaign services across a range of call types – telemarketing, customer service, technical helpdesk, debt management and many more.

16.  PBX (Private Branch Exchange): An office telephone system located in one building that provides voice communications. Also known in the UK as a PABX (Private Automatic Branch Exchange).

Taken from :

BPO - Call Centre - Even more Jargon, jargon, Jargon

1.     Predictive Dialler: Specialist telephony equipment for managing outbound calls. The term predictive means that the dialler will phone the telephone number of the customers you want to contact, and only when the phone is answered by a person, will the call then be directed to an agent to answer. Here an algorithm is used to predict when an agent is likely to become free and dials in anticipation of this so that the non productive time that an agent spends between calls is minimised.

2.      Queue: The ability to prioritise and handle callers when there is no Agent available

3.      Screen Pop : Screen pop describes the ability for a screen to arrive on an agent desktop at the same time as a call

4.      Service Level Agreement: A contractual agreement between a service provider and the organisation specifying specific performance standards to be achieved.

5.      Skill Based Routing: Ensures that calls are directed to those agents that have the specific skills to answer that call type most effectively

6.      Talk Time: The amount of time an Agent spends handling a customer call - from start to finish.

7.      Turret : This is one of the most baffling uses of jargon in a call centre, but effectively means an agent telephone set. Usually the term teleset is used these days.

8.      UC - Unified Communications: Blending of interaction types; where initial contact was made by Voice, the response may be via email, etc.

9.      Virtual Call Centre: A group of Call Centres that acts as a single point for call handling and reporting processes.

10.  Wallboards: Electronic displays within the physical location of a call centre, used to give the management and agents a view of their own team's performance. Wallboards can be used to display key performance criteria such as service level or calls queuing, again in real time.

11.  WFM - Work Force Management: The means of determining and providing Schedules, Forecasting and Adherence for a work force, against historical interaction volumes and known future events.

12.  Wrap Time: Time taken by the Agent, following the call, to complete the transactions for that call – also known as After Call Work.

Taken from :

BPO – Call Centre Jargon, Jargon, Jargon

       Call centres  are  littered  with  buzzwords,  jargon  and  abbreviations.  There  are  lots  of  three  letter 
       acronyms or TLAs used in call centres. 

1.      3-2-1 (Idea Generation Technique): Used to gather information from several people in a short space of time. Focused on identifying immediate solutions to a specific issue.

2.      ACW - After Call Work:  A period of time immediately after contact with the customer is completed and any supplementary work is undertaken by the Agent, in relation to that interaction.

3.      AHT (Average Handling Time): The amount of time it takes an Agent to deal with all aspects of a call – includes talk time plus after call work

4.      Agent: The person who receives and makes customer telephone calls. May also deal with customer correspondence and customer e-mails. Also known as Customer Advisor or Customer Representative.

5.      Agent Status: The Agent status at a particular point in time e.g. wait, talk, wrap, idle, unavailable.

6.      ACD Automatic Call Distributor: The telephone system that takes all the calls either coming into (or going out) of a centre and directs each call to the right person or team to answer, queuing the calls where necessary. The ACD system can handle multiple telephone numbers coming into the centre, and produces a range of Management Information reports about the call traffic and the agents handling those calls.

7.      ANI - Automatic Number Identification: A feature of the telephony network to capture a callers identifying telephony number.

8.      Automated Speech Recognition: A solution to automate some or all parts of a customer call. It allows the caller to interact with your call centre, using their natural language, without the involvement of an Agent. Speech recognition can be applied to some or even all parts of a call, particularly where the information that you collect is in a standard form.

9.      Automatic Call Distributor (ACD) : The type of telephone system used in most call centres. Sometimes called a call centre it is used to queue callers and distribute the calls to agents. It usually includes the ability to generate statistics. Manufacturers include Aspect, Avaya (used to be called Lucent), Cisco, Nortel and Rockwell. It may be a dedicated telephone system or part of an office telephone system.

10.  Average Speed Of Answer: The average time (typically in seconds) for calls to be answered in the call centre. This needs to be treated carefully since it deals with the arithmetic mean. For example if 9 calls were answered immediately and at a very busy period one call waited for 10 minutes to be answered - it would treat the average speed of answer at one minute - even though 90% of calls were answered immediately.

11.  Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) : Taking a business task and getting another company to deliver it. This term is typically used to mean moving call centres and other business functions to India and other lower cost countries.

12.  Call Avoidance: A proactive strategy to reduce the number of unwanted or low value calls-for example failure avoidance by eliminating repeat calls; or call automation through self-service.

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