There are many compelling reasons for call center managers to seek out a solution that would provide home-based or virtual call center agents with toll-quality voice service. In theory, infrastructure costs can be reduced, scheduling can be significantly more flexible, and the pool of potential call center agent candidates is greatly expanded. The technology to support virtual call center agents exists today with the exception of the network infrastructure.
This research note examines the technical ability to deliver toll-quality IP Telephony (IPT) service to virtual agents using currently available network infrastructure options, including:
- Options to deliver toll-quality voice over traditional voice networks.
- One option to create a private network infrastructure to carry VoIP.
- Alternate solutions using the public Internet.
The fact is that it will be technically challenging – and costly – to provide toll-quality voice service to virtual call center agents. When considering using virtual agents, prepare a comprehensive business case, but keep in mind that overcoming the technical challenges may add unforeseen costs.