Business IT Support and Cloud Services
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Customised VoIP Solutions

phone-answering-serviceWe have been working one of our Cambridge clients who run a virtual pa business.  They currently use our VoIP solution and given the growth of the business over the last few years, had the following requirements:

  • Reporting to automate how much time should be billed to their clients for answering and making telephone calls.  It currently takes four days to produce customer invoices.
  • Ability to call out as if they were dialling using the customers own number.  This is currently only possible if they switch between accounts and is very cumbersome.
  • Allow them to work in the same way as they do today in terms of call routing, out of hours routing, voice mail, email alerts and using the same soft phones.
  • Low cost.
  • Ability to show a web page when a customer calls for updating notes / referring to standard operating procedures (SOP).

The most important item for the client was to remove the 4 day invoicing time.  This was a soul destroying process and eating in to the companies profit.

There are a great many solutions out there – both open source and paid for which at first site seem to solve some of the above.   We found that all of the reporting systems focussed on the calls made rather than trying to identify a client and bill back time for the client.

Once we had established that there was some custom code to be built for reporting, we have successfully deployed the following solution for the client:

  • Connected their existing VoIP lines to an asterisk server running FreePBX front end.
  • Setup a simple method where calls can be initiated as if calling from the customer by using a call prefix e.g. *1046*
  • Deployed the solutions to Amazon Web Services (AWS).  This means there are no servers to purchase or maintain at the client site.
  • Locked down the environment to the customers site only to enhance security.
  • Automated daily, weekly and monthly snapshots of the environment for backup.
  • Only run the asterisk server when required.  This keeps costs even lower.
  • Used Python to write a custom reporting script that produces an Excel file of usage for each customer, formatted ready for use as billing.  The report runs every hour automatically so the our Client can monitor calls.
  • Solution cost is extremely low.  All software is stable and mature open source software and carries no ongoing costs.

Our client is extremely happy with the solution.  There has been a very short learning curve for the staff and producing end of month reports is now a breeze.

The solution opens the door for further features should they be required:

  • Call queues
  • Interactive Voice Menu’s
  • Operator panel showing calls and who’s taking the calls.
  • Advanced call centre features.
  • Very detailed call reports.
  • Outlook integration
  • CRM integration
  • Pop up’s on calls allowing specific pages to be shown in CRM systems.

We are more than happy to provide custom VoIP solutions for our customers.  Please contact us if you would like to discuss further.