Robo-calls are making the news lately. I even wrote a blog about them last year. We all hate getting those calls. While most contact centers follow the rules, there are companies that don’t and they are the ones that cause consumer frustration. But just because Robo-calls are bad, it doesn’t mean that the technology that allows those kinds of calls are bad. Call Progress Analysis (CPA) is one of those technologies, and CPA is but one of many technologies that enable the bad apple Robo-Calls to happen.
CPA is what enables the robo-call, as it rips through its many calls, to try and find a live person to talk to. The calling system uses CPA to see if a call is ringing, if the line is busy, or if a call is answered, and then to figure out if it’s an answering machine, fax machine, or a live person. In other words, analysis of the progress of the call, hence the term Call Progress Analysis. And the calling system does this by trying to figure out the background noise, overall energy of the answer, etc. The overall outbound calling system then uses this information to figure out when to put a live agent on the phone.
There are very legitimate uses for CPA and the outbound dialing systems that utilize them. For instance, you may have chosen to be contacted by mobile phone call by your airline. If say, the airplane is delayed, then the airline would need to contact everyone. Some may choose email, some may choose text, some may choose a voice call. If say 70 people chose voice call, then the airline can put this into their outbound system and have it call everyone. If someone answered, then they can choose to talk to the person with a live agent (maybe if they are a high status flier), or they may choose to play an announcement about the flight. I’m sure you can think of many other examples like this.
Next week I will discuss the impact of CPA moving to software based call systems.