The use of IP technology in contact centres received a major boost with the announcement that industry leader Genesys Telecommunications Laboratories will now support the Asterisk open source IP PBX platform.
"Genesys is adding formal support for Asterisk in response to growing demand from our customer base. The increased importance of SIP and standards-based technology has paved the way for using open source for contact centres. We have reached a point where Asterisk and SIP are mature, reliable and proven technologies," says Wes Hayden, president and CEO of Genesys.
The addition of Asterisk is part of a broader strategy by Genesys to enable a smooth transition to IP through software that works with any infrastructure, allowing companies to leverage their existing investments.
In related announcements, Genesys customers unveiled key deployments of the technology, at Groupama Rhône Alpes Auvergne in France, and E.Novation Contact Centres in the Netherlands, and Global Speech Networks of Australia.
"For E.Novation Contact Centres, deploying Genesys on Asterisk allows us to create a flexible solution that leverages best-in-class software and platforms. E.Novation has brought together customer solutions and business processes that improve our customer service significantly," says Arnoud Munneke, operational director for E.Novation Contact Centres.
The announcement by Genesys is also expected to accelerate the evolution of major contact centres toward using voice over IP technology. Since large contact centres handle millions of calls per month, the scalability and reliability of IP is critical to their adoption rate.
While many businesses have moved quickly to implement IP telephony for phone services, contact centres must meet much higher standards and cannot completely abandon traditional systems, or take a "forklift" approach to implementing IP.
A recent Genesys survey found that 82% of contact centres expect to begin their shift to IP over the next two years – but most expect to use a mixture of traditional circuit-switched telephony and IP – packet switching telephony across their operations.