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Avaya Contact Center Express Launches for Medium-Sized Businesses, Driving Superior Levels of Customer Service, Cost-Efficiency

10-18-2004

Avaya Inc. (NYSE:AV), a leading global provider of business communications software, systems and services, today announced the launch of Avaya Contact Center Express, the company's first complete multimedia contact center solution designed solely for medium-sized businesses. The solution extends the advanced customer service capabilities of large enterprises to any medium-sized organization, including complete multimedia interaction — via voice, Web chat and e-mail — and the ability to route interactions and customer data to the appropriately skilled agent. This results in more efficient and productive interactions, helping medium-sized businesses drive superior customer service and sales in a cost-effective manner.

Avaya Inc. (NYSE:AV), a leading global provider of business communications software, systems and services, today announced the launch of Avaya Contact Center Express, the company's first complete multimedia contact center solution designed solely for medium-sized businesses. The solution extends the advanced customer service capabilities of large enterprises to any medium-sized organization, including complete multimedia interaction — via voice, Web chat and e-mail — and the ability to route interactions and customer data to the appropriately skilled agent. This results in more efficient and productive interactions, helping medium-sized businesses drive superior customer service and sales in a cost-effective manner.

Avaya Contact Center Express leverages Avaya's global leadership in contact centers1 and Internet Protocol telephony — a technology that transmits voice as data over a computer network — providing a flexible mid-market solution that is easy to install and use. By offering simple integration between contact center applications and business applications, organizations can reduce implementation costs significantly. The solution also lets mid-sized businesses tap IP networks to closely link distributed workers, and extend contact center functions to agents in any location. This helps businesses rapidly scale to meet the needs of expanding contact center operations, ensuring the right people — with the necessary skills — have the tools to serve customers effectively.

"As the mid-market sector continues to grow, so do the challenges placed on contact center operations serving these organizations," said Katrina Howell, research analyst, Frost & Sullivan. "These companies require an integrated solution that can leverage the power of IP, and meet the needs of customers seeking 24x7 interaction via any medium — voice, e-mail or the Internet. Avaya offers customers the benefit of being able to tap the rich contact center functionality formerly reserved for large enterprises, and extend those capabilities to any medium-sized organization."

UpSource Inc., a provider of high quality customer service solutions, added Avaya Contact Center Express to improve productivity, consolidate reporting and enhance its sophisticated service offering. The Cambridge, Massachusetts-headquartered service provider had been seeking a solution to facilitate e-mail management across its perse client base.

"Leveraging sophisticated contact center capabilities enables us to continuously improve performance on behalf of our clients," said Mark Burns, chief technology officer, UpSource. "Avaya Contact Center Express fits our needs very well, enabling us to provide advanced multi-channel support capabilities to mid-sized enterprises that are typically only offered to larger companies.

"For instance, integrating inbound e-mail into the customer interaction process, along with the voice channel, is essential to us, and Avaya Contact Center Express makes this easy. Now, we can automatically push customer e-mails to agents, and monitor the response rates. It is a win with respect to agent productivity, efficiency and customer satisfaction — while allowing supervisors to better track agent performance. Providing accurate reporting on e-mail handling is a critical component of the business information that UpSource delivers to our clients."

Avaya Mid-Market Solution Makes Contact Center Capabilities Easy to Use and Manage
Avaya Contact Center Express provides a full range of computer telephony integration (CTI) and intelligent routing capabilities, as well as desktop applications that support centralized configuration, easy-to-install access wizards and comprehensive reporting for all media channels. This makes it simple for mid-sized enterprises to rapidly implement contact center applications, and allows for the centralized deployment of contact center features without a large IT staff. Once installed, an administrator can introduce additional capabilities — such as outbound contact and extensive reporting of agent activity — to meet the needs of a business as it evolves.

Avaya Contact Center Express also delivers a significant return on investment, enabling organizations to cost-efficiently implement an end-to-end contact center solution, while protecting existing IT purchases. For example, it can integrate with traditional systems or an IP telephony platform based on Avaya Communication Manager, the company's award-winning IP telephony software. Avaya Contact Center Express also integrates with business applications such as customer relationship management and Microsoft® Outlook® software, further reducing implementation costs.

Research undertaken recently by Datamonitor found that cost-effectiveness and ease of installation and maintenance are key factors that medium-sized enterprises consider, when making purchasing decisions in this market.

"Companies in the mid-market segment often have stringent cost savings and efficiency requirements, and Avaya Contact Center Express directly addresses these areas," said Eileen Rudden, vice president and general manager of Avaya's enterprise communications applications pision. "Through close integration of Avaya's IP telephony software and contact center applications, this solution helps enterprises maximize existing investments, while providing the security, reliability and scalability expected from an integrated contact center solution. This delivers on our strategy to provide advanced contact center capabilities to any type of business — from small start-ups to large international businesses."

For organizations that need to further develop and customize their contact center operations, Avaya Contact Center Express also includes simple-to-use application development tools for enhanced customization and integration.

Avaya Web Chat on Mid-Market Contact Center Strategies
As part of this launch, Avaya will host a public Web chat with several Avaya contact center experts on Tuesday, October 26, from 1-2 p.m. Eastern U.S. time.

In addition to discussing details of Avaya Contact Center Express, participants in the Web chat will have an opportunity to ask questions and explore contact center strategies for medium-sized organizations. Among the topics explored will be methods for creating competitive advantage through multiple modes of interaction, and revenue-building opportunities offered by matching customers to the right agents. The Web chat will also let participants discover the most cost-effective methods for increasing agent productivity.

To join this Web chat, please visit:
http://www1.avaya.com/campaign/contact/US/CCECHAT/index.html?cid=IL1018AVPR

Note to editors:
Avaya Contact Center Express is part of the Avaya Customer Interaction Suite of contact center solutions. It will be available immediately in the following languages: English, French, Spanish, German, Italian, Russian, Japanese, Chinese (simplified and traditional), Brazilian Portuguese, and Korean.

About Avaya
Avaya Inc. designs, builds and manages communications networks for more than one million businesses worldwide, including over 90 percent of the FORTUNE 500®. Focused on businesses large to small, Avaya is a world leader in secure and reliable Internet Protocol (IP) telephony systems and communications software applications and services.

Driving the convergence of voice and data communications with business applications — and distinguished by comprehensive worldwide services — Avaya helps customers leverage existing and new networks to achieve superior business results. For more information visit the Avaya Web site: http://www.avaya.com

1 Based on research including Frost & Sullivan reports on North American ACD systems (4/04), Asia Pacific Interaction CRM Markets (2004), and Latin American Contact Center Solutions Market (2004).

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