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Fonality Beats Avaya and Boasts 3,000 Call Centers
[October 23, 2008]

Fonality Beats Avaya and Boasts 3,000 Call Centers

Chief Technology Officer and Executive Editor
 
Originally posted on VoIP & Gadgets Blog, here: http://blog.tmcnet.com/blog/tom-keating/asterisk/fonality-beats-avaya-and-boasts-3000-call-centers.asp.

crusecom-logo.jpg
Fonality's CEO Chris Lyman (News - Alert) spoke with me earlier today to talk about the strong inroads Fonality has been making in the call center market. Chris said, "Fonality (News - Alert) has become a big player in what I like to call the micro call center market. We launched our call center product in 2005 and we have almost 3,000 deployed call centers now."

When asked to define "call center" since many people have a different definition, Chris responded, "Anybody who purchases Call Center Edition plus HUD Agent. We can't imagine someone buying barging, monitoring, recording, and queue reporting if you weren't doing call center activity. Since these products effectively add in some cases double the costs to the phone system, you're pretty serious if you're buying those."

When asked what percentage were call center deployments versus regular enterprise deployments, Chris said that 40-50% were off all their solutions sold are Call Center Edition.

Chris stated that there is a vastly under served and untapped call center market when he explained, "The 5-50 agent market where I have a regular business with 50 employees, but I've got 10 sales people who work the queues. And so there is this micro call center that has been ignored by Genesys and the expensive players out there for all these years because you cannot afford a $100,000 drop-in, bolt-on Avaya call center system. I think the low end of the market hasn't been able to afford that and we're enabling the micro call center market."

Chris explained that Fonality PBXtra Call Center saved Crusecom, a Michigan-based outsourcing call center, more than $250,000 annually. Art Cruse CEO at Crusecom explained he'd have to hire a full-time Avaya (News - Alert) engineer on-site at $140,000 - $160,000 per year plus maintenance costs of the Avaya system. He also explained Avaya call center phones are more expensive than regular Avaya phones. They also have 94% call completion rate or an amazing 6% abandonment rate. Other call centers are coming to look at how they've achieved such as phenomenally low abandonment rate. Fonality's call center system has helped Crusecom attain rapid growth. The $250,000 savings enabled Cruseco to invest in a new 14,000 square foot call center facility that will house up to 150 call center agents.


"Fonality and PBXtra Call Center made our whole business model of providing cost effective, outsourced onshore call centers possible. They have delivered remarkable business benefits to our company," said Art Cruse CEO at Crusecom. "When we bought our Fonality system, it was 75 percent less than a comparable Avaya system. With Avaya, we would easily be paying an extra $250,000 per year in support, maintenance and hardware costs, which would directly impact our bottom line and limit our growth capabilities."

Crusecom provides 24x7x365 call center operations to state agencies and companies that want to keep call center operations in the U.S. but cannot afford the high costs of urban call centers. Since deploying PBXtra Call Center in 2007, the company has expanded its customer base, added 50 new call center agents and increased inbound call volumes.


"PBXtra Call Center is amazing - the more calls we get the more we save," Cruse continued. "We've been able to reinvest these cost savings in our company and grow our business very rapidly."

By leveraging web-based reporting capabilities in PBXtra Call Center and other technology developed in-house, Crusecom is the only electronic benefits transfer (EBT) call center in the country that is offering customers real-time, web-based service level agreement reporting. In addition to the $250,000 he is already saving with Fonality, Crusecom estimates that this real-time, self-service reporting functionality saves his company eight to 16 man hours every day, or $50,000 to $100,000 annually, while providing customers with better service and support.

"Gone are the days of the cumbersome, big-iron call center oligopoly. Crusecom is a perfect example of why there is a changing of the guard in the call center market as companies rapidly adopt more agile technologies like PBXtra Call Center," said Chris Lyman CEO of Fonality. "Small and mid-size call centers need affordable, flexible phone systems with solid service agreements that allow them to grow rapidly. Fonality is delivering on these requirements and is constantly innovating with newer advanced technologies."

Chris also explained that Fonality's flat rate support was also a key advantage over other call center IP-PBX competitors. Lastly, he explained the hybrid-hosted approach enables call centers to have home agents without the need for VPNs. The hybrid-hosted approach resolves pesky VoIP over NAT firewall issues making telecommuting a much easier approach with lower TCO.

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