IP Telephony Glossary

20 acronyms every call centre manager should know!

There are many acronyms used within the call centre industry, these can often be very confusing for those people new to the field. The purpose of this article is to therefore explain all of the common buzzwords, jargon and abbreviations that will be found as soon as people start talking about call centres.

  1. ACD – Automatic Call Distributor
    This is a system or device that distributes incoming calls to a specific group of agents. It enables skill based queuing, routing and reporting for calls.

  2. ASR – Answer Seizure Ratio
    Also often referred to as call completion rate, ASR is a measurement of network quality and call success rate.

  3. BRI – Basic Rate Interface
    A BRI line is one access method for ISDN (Integrated services digital network). The line provides two bearer channels for voice and data, and one channel for signalling.

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

  5. CPE – Customer Premises Equipment
    CPE is telephone or other service provider equipment that is located on the customer’s premises, that being a physical location, rather than in the provider’s premises or in between.

  6. CRM – Customer Relationship Management
    CRM is a widely implemented model for managing a company’s interactions with customers, clients and sales prospects. The strategy is used to boost revenue and customer satisfaction by improving customer experience.

  7. CTI – Computer Telephony Integration
    The ability to automatically combine voice and data at the agents desktop. It can also be known as screen pop, when customer details appear automatically on an agents screen upon a call being answered.

  8. DNIS – Dialled Number Identification Service
    Also known in the UK as DDI, this is a telephone service that identifies for the receiver of a call, the number that the caller dialled.

  9. DMS – Document Management System
    Many call centres handle large amounts of incoming mail, this is is opened and scanned by DMS for electronic distribution as part of a workflow process for managing correspondence.

  10. ISDN – Integrated Services Digital Network
    A digital network for providing 64kbit and 2 Mbit bandwidth voice and data circuits. It is a set of communication standards for simultaneous digital transmission of voice, video, data and other network services.

  11. IVR – Interactive Voice Response
    Provides flexibility by directing callers by way of customisable audio prompts. An IVR routes a call to the most appropriate agent, alternatively it can ask customers to use their own telephone keypad to input information.

  12. LAN – Local Area Network
    A network located in one building that links terminals, PCs and common equipment.

  13. NAT – Network Address Translation
    Is the process of modifying IP address information in IP packet headers across a traffic routing device. The main use of NAT is to limit the number of public IP addresses an organisation must use.

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

  15. PRI – Primary Rate Interface
    This is a standardised telecommunications service level within the ISDN specification for carrying multiple voice and data transmissions between a network and a user.

  16. PSTN – Public Switched Telephone Network
    PSTN is the world’s collection of interconnected voice orientated public telephone networks, both commercial and government-owned.

  17. TCP/IP – Transmission Control Protocol / Internet Protocol
    The basic communication language or protocol of the internet. It is a suite of communications protocols used to interconnect network devices on the internet.

  18. VPN – Virtual Private Network
    A VPN supplies network connectivity over a possibly long physical distance. VPNs enable file sharing, video conferencing and similar network services.

  19. WAN – Wide Area Network
    An intra office data network that is used to connect terminals, computers and equipment across multiple sites.

  20. WWW – World Wide Web
    The primary server, the internet, a global read-write information space.

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