The PC based Windows Operator Console 'SoftConsole' has been specifically designed to benefit businesses through improved operator service. Deployment of the SoftConsole provides the operator with the correct information to prioritize call handling and give the appropriate response to the caller. At the same time, the operator can maintain visibility of the number and type of calls waiting and so ensure that clients are greeted in a professional manner, enhancing the image of the company.
SoftConsole has been designed to be easy to use, whilst offering a look and feel, which will appeal to experienced and novice operators alike.
The console is divided into the following areas:
- Main Menu Bar
Commands & actions are available through menus. Some items are only accessible when the right conditions occur e.g. when a call is received. The following items available are:
- Save Profile
- New call
- Answer call
- Hold call
- Transfer call
- Transfer complete
- Reattempt transfer
- Hang up
- Record call
- Compact view
- Dial Pad
- Access conference room 1
- Access conference room 2
- Call Details Panel
The call details panel on the left shows details of the current call which will include the following information:
- Calling Name
The system directory name associated with the calling number.
- Calling Number
The telephone number of the call originator.
- Called Name
The system user name or hunt group name associated with the called number.
- Called Number
The extension number the incoming call has been routed to by the system.
- Call Status
States the progress of a call. The border around the call status panel changes colour to indicate the status of the call.
- Call Duration
The length of time that the has been in the state as indicated by the Call Status
This area displays notes or information about the call i.e. when a call has been returned as there was no answer from the extension it was transferred to. If annotation is attached to the call, details are shown in the Notes area. If a new call arrives, the call details panel will display the calls waiting to alert the user and allow answering of the call based on the Caller ID.
- Directory Panel
The directory panel on the right shows information on following:
- Directory entries
Including IP Office users, hunt groups and external directory user (non IP Office user)
- Single directory entry details
Including IP Office users, Hunt Groups and external directory user (non IP Office user)
- Script file
When a script file has been configured for either the calling or called number. For example, an operator may be answering calls on behalf of more than one company. To ensure the call isanswered with the correct company name a script file can be created with the company name details. The script file is displayed whenever a call is received for that company.
Within SoftConsole calls can be conferenced when held or a conference can be created through the two conference rooms:
- Conference Held Calls
An operator can conference calls that are in the Held Panel. All calls in the Held Panel will be conferenced.
- Conference Room
An operator can configure up to two conference rooms including details on who is hosting the conference plus the ability to send out invites to conference participants (automatic invites can be generated in conjunction with Voicemail Pro, see Conferencing Centre for more details).
- Queue Panel
The queue panel displays graphical information via means of a dynamically updated bar graph, on the number and the status of external calls held in a particular queue. Up to 8 Call queues can be configured and labelled to reflect incoming calls for specific Hunt Groups
- Held Calls Panel
The held call panel enables the operator to manage all calls held at the operator station. These will appear as a list in panel. The operator can perform the following the functions:
Answer the highlighted held call,
Answer the longest held call,
Conference held calls (see conferencing section above) or Transfer held call
- BLF Panel (Busy Lamp Field Panel)
The BLF panel displays icons to indicate the status of selected users. Each Icon provides information on individual users such as: Unread 'User' voicemail messages, User status information e.g. Busy, DND and Forwarded or Tabs can be configured to indicate different groups of BLF icons.
- Park Slot Panel
The park slot panel can contain up to 16 system-wide park slots with specific Park ID's for each slot.
- Call History
SoftConsole's call history keeps a combined record of up to 100 (incoming, outgoing and missed) calls while the application is active Double-clicking any logged call dials that number.
- Status Bar
Shows current status of the system. The bar is divided into four sections that display: The current connection status, The current Profile name, Information messages e.g. alarm conditions and the number of new voice mail messages for the operator.
SoftConsole has plethora of configurable options available to the operator to personalize the look and feel and tailor the usability specifically to each operator's personal preferences. The following configuration options are available:
- Incoming Calls
This tab enables the operator to manage the local SoftConsole directory by creating, editing and deleting entries from the selected directory. Also the operator is able to associate a script or media file with each specific entry.
- Queue Mode
This tab enables the operator to configure the queue window with up to 8 hunt group queues, which will include a recall queue. Queues can be created, edited and deleted while also providing the operator with the additional benefit of positioning them in the queue window in order of operator preference. Management by exception is employed to monitor queue status by enabling the operator to configure various alarm thresholds such as the Number of calls in queue and Longest waiting call time. Note: a media file can be associated with an alarm.
- Park Slots
This tab enables the operator to configure, which park slots are accessible on a system wide basis up to a maximum of 16. The operator is also able to assign which key sequences are used to access each park slot and where they appear within the park slot panel.
- BLF Groups
This tab enables the operator to create and edit BLF groups.
- Door Entry
This tab enables the operator to configure up to two door entries.
This tab enables the operator to configure access to the following directories: SoftConsole local directory, IP Office directory and Microsoft Outlook contacts. Secondly the operator is able to configure, which fields will be displayed for each individual directory entry.
This tab enables the operator to set up the names of the two conference rooms. This name will appear on the telephone displays of users in the conference room (maximum of 10 characters).
- Keyboard Mapping
This tab enables the operator to assign short cut keys for SoftConsole functions.
- Keyboard Actions
This tab enables the operator to specify the default action when alphabetic or numeric characters are entered.
- Alphabetic Keystrokes
Begin directory search or Open call annotation window
- Numeric Keystrokes
Begin directory search or Open pop-up dial pad
This tab enables the operator to change the appearance of SoftConsole fonts, skins and the call information window colour.
This tab enables the operator to save the changes made to the configuration of SoftConsole either automatically or manually.
SoftConsole has an administration mode that enables the operator to configure the following settings:
- Change and create templates
SoftConsole comes with three predefined templates, which can be altered. Or new templates can be created.
- Control panel views
The BLF panel, held calls panel and park slot panel can be disabled or enabled for viewing purposes only when the operator accesses the viewing menu.
- Change the Administrator password
- Edit operator profiles
Each operator can have a personalize profile, which can be configured by the administrator.
- Specify the maximum length of call notes
IP Office supports numerous different endpoints such as 20xx, 24xx, 64xx, 46xx and 44xx. These have differing display sizes, which means the administrator is able to tailor the call notes field according to the endpoints utilized.
SoftConsole PC Requirements
- IP Office switch software release 2.0 or higher
- Ethernet attached PC running Microsoft Windows 98/NT4/2000/XP operating systems, in conjunction with TCP/IP Networking
- Minimum Pentium II processor 400Mhz or higher with 64MB RAM (or higher as specified by the Windows version) and 1Gb of free disk space (plus sound card if audio features are required)
- A maximum of four SoftConsole applications can be run per system (a license controls the number ofsimultaneous SoftConsole users)