How to import Do Not Call lists

This blog gives step-by-step instructions on how to import Do Not Call lists into Acarda Outbound. These instructions apply to both the Team and Solo Editions of Acarda Outbound. For Acarda Outbound Team: In Acarda Outbound Manager click on the Manage tab then in the Import group of icons, click on the Do Not Call icon. For Acarda Outbound Solo: Click on the Administration tab (rather than the Agent View tab) and then the Manage tab, then in the Import group of icons, click on the Do Not Call icon.

The import Do Not Call file must be a text file such as a csv file. If there is more than one column of data then only the first column will be imported. Formatting of the telephone numbers will be removed during import.

Take the following steps to import the Do Not Cal list:

  1. Select the Import File.
  2. Modify the defaulted “Comment” if you want to. Note the “Source Tag” cannot be changed. This is used to identify the import file source is useful for managing your Do Not Call lists.
  3. Click the Import button.

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Figure 1: The Import Do Not Call Tab.

Once you have imported a file, the Import and Cancel buttons will be disabled to prevent you accidently re-importing the same data. After selecting a new source file name, these buttons will be enabled again.

To view the imported Do Not Call list data you need to open the Do Not Call directory. For Acarda Outbound Team: In Acarda Outbound Manager click on the Manage tab then in the Directories group of icons, click on the Do Not Call icon. For Acarda Outbound Solo: Click on the Administration tab (rather than the Agent View tab) and then the Manage tab, then in the Directories group of icons, click on the Do Not Call icon.

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Figure 2: The Do Not Call directory.

In the grid list on the left side is a list of import sources, the date of import, comment and a count of the number of records imported. As these lists could have millions of numbers in them we do not show the actual list of numbers unless you use the Display All icon at top of the right side panel called Source List Numbers. Usually you would enter in a telephone number to check in the “Search Telephone” box at the top of the gird. You can also delete an individual telephone number from this source’s list by clicking on the Delete icon.

Take care above the left hand side list is a Delete Source icon. Only use that if you want to delete the entire list! If you upload Do Not Call numbers each month then use the Source to identify the imported list. It is helpful to include the Month and Year in the Source tag. e.g. 702 Jan 2016. Then when you come to import a more recent list you can delete the old list by using the Source Delete. If your Do Not Call lists have millions of numbers then you may need to delete the older list prior to importing the replacement list.

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How to dial out with 3CXPhone for Windows

The method for Acarda Outbound to dial out with a v14 3CX phone system requires that the softphone 3CXPhone for Windows is installed. If this is not installed please contact your 3CX integrator for instructions. These instructions apply to both the Team and Solo Editions of Acarda Outbound v7.2.0.2304 and above. To get Acarda Outbound to dial out with a v14 3CX phone system you can take the following steps:

Installing 3CX Plug-in Files

When Acarda Outbound Agent or Solo is installed a folder is created as “C:\Program Files\Acarda\Acarda Outbound\3CX Support Files” (or “C:\Program Files (x86)\…” on 64bit installs) which will contain the two plug-in files “Innovasoft.XDMessaging.dll” & “Innovasoft.S3CX.dll”. Copy the two files to the install folder of the 3CXPhone (3CXWin8Phone.exe) which by default is “C:\ProgramData\3CXPhone for Windows\PhoneApp”.

To activate the plug-in locate the file C:\ProgramData\3CXPhone for Windows\PhoneApp\

3CXWin8Phone.exe.user.config", open and edit adding the reference to "Innovasoft.S3CX" for the key="CRMPlugin", use a comma to separate multiple entries or add the key & value if required.

e.g.
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<appSettings>
<add key="version" value="3.0.0" />
<add key="ClientSettingsProvider.ServiceUri" value="" />
<add key="CRMPlugin" value="CallTriggerCmdPlugin,Innovasoft.S3CX"/>
<add key="MakeCallTimeout" value="10000" />
<add key="MakeCallTimeoutCTIUnsupported" value="200000" />
<add key="EnableVCELogging" value="true" />
<add key="MaxLogFileSizeMb" value="5" />
<add key="RequestTimeout" value="60" />
<add key="MaxUploadSizeKb" value="2048" />
</appSettings>

When the 3CXPhone is started the plug-in will now automatically be loaded enabling the dial functionality to be activated from Acarda Outbound.

Connecting Acarda Outbound to the 3CXPhone for Windows Softphone

To set the correct dialing device for Acarda Outbound Team: In Acarda Outbound Agent click on the Tools menu up the top right side of the screen and select the Dialing Device submenu. For Acarda Outbound Solo: Click on the Agent View tab and in the top right, click the Tools menu and select the Dialing Device submenu.

To dial out via the 3CXPhone, the softphone must be installed, running and logged in before continuing. In the Acarda Outbound Dialing Device select “3CXPhone for Windows” from the drop down. Click Save to select this option.

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Figure 1: The 3CXPhone for Windows dialing device selection.

When you select the 3CXPhone for the dialing device and you have Acarda Outbound administrator rights you have the option to test dial a number. Click the Test button in the lower left of the window. This will open the Test Dial Settings window.

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Figure 2: The Test Dial Settings window.

Enter a number to dial, click the Dial button to test the dialing via the 3CXPhone. A log will also be shown to indicate success or error in the dial attempt. Click the Hang Up button to end the call.

Once successful close the Test Dial Settings and Dialing Device windows to return to the Agent or Solo dialing screens. The 3CXPhone will now be set as your default dialing device and be used to dial and hang up calls from Acarda Outbound.

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How to setup campaigns based on post codes

In some situations you may wish to take a telephone list and assign those numbers with certain post codes to specific agents to work on. This blog will explain how to take a full dialing list and split it up into individual campaigns based on the post code.

In Acarda Outbound a campaign has an associated calling list and the agents are assigned to teams which work on the designated calling list. To split the lists based on post code first import the calling data into a campaign e.g. Master List. Then make up the other campaigns using the post code number for easy identification e.g. Code 10001, Code 10012, Code 10016. Campaigns are set up under menu Setup then Campaigns. Note, when you import you must import the post code to the DialList field called PostCode.

Postcode campaigns

Figure 1: Campaign Name Setup

Once the Master List has had the calling list imported then you can use the List Management tools to shift data from that campaign to another one using the post code as the criteria. To do this, take the following steps.

  1. Open the Modify Campaign List Management Tool.
    1. In Acarda Outbound Team: open Acarda Outbound Manager click on the Manage tab then in the List Management group of icons, click on the Modify Campaign icon.
    2. In Acarda Outbound Solo: click on the Administration tab (rather than the Agent View tab) and click on the Manage tab, then in the List Management group of icons, click on the Modify Campaign icon.
  2. On the left-side, click on the master list campaign you imported the calling list to.
  3. On the right-side, in the Filter Criteria panel, enter the Post Code for the calling list records you wish to move to a specific campaign. You can leave the original records in the master list if you want to and just copy the selected records into the new campaign. Do this by checking the “Retain original records” box.
  4. Now click the Modify button.

Modify campaign

Figure 2: Modify Campaign

You can view the records in the campaign the usual way by clicking View in the Campaign group of icons under Manage. For more information on how to import calling lists please contact us.

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How to dial out with 3CXPhone using 3CX CallTriggerCmd

Acarda Outbound can make use of the 3CX CallTriggerCmd application to dial out with the 3CXPhone for Windows. To begin with open the file:

“C:\ProgramData\3CXPhone for Windows\PhoneApp\3CXWin8Phone.user.config”

in a text editor such as Notepad and check that the “CallTriggerCmdPlugin” dll is referred to in the “CRMPlugin” key:

<add key=”CRMPlugin” value=”CallTriggerCmdPlugin “/>

If you already had the 3CXPhone open please Exit and start it again. Note that the 3CXPhone must remain open if you want to dial out with it. It will not open automatically on dial.

These instructions apply to both the Team and Solo Editions of Acarda Outbound. For Acarda Outbound Team: In Acarda Outbound Agent click on the Tools menu up the top right side of the screen and select the Dialing Device submenu. For Acarda Outbound Solo: Click on the Agent View tab and in the top right, click the Tools menu and select the Dialing Device submenu.

Dialing Device Softphone App

Figure 1: The dialing device configuration.

Once you have selected the dialing device menu from the drop-down, you will be presented with the dialog above. You can then select the “Softphone Application” from the current dialing device drop-down to use this dialing method.

With the 3CXPhone using CallTriggerCmdPlugin only the Dial command can be used and not Hang Up. You need to use the 3CXPhone to hang up the call. Future integrations will allow this feature.

Dial Device Call Trigger

Figure 2: The Software Application configuration.

You can test your setup first using Cmd. Paste the MakeCall command and click enter with an appropriate extension:

“C:\ProgramData\3CXPhone for Windows\PhoneApp\CallTriggerCmd.exe” -cmd makecall:102

Once that works then go into the agent screen and add a test number e.g. click on the Action button then “Add Dial Card”, enter the test extension or number e.g. 102. Click the Next Dial button and it should dial out via the 3CXPhone which will start to ring the number.

To read up more on 3CX’s integration with CallTriggerCmdPlugin please refer to their blog at http://www.3cx.com/blog/docs/3cxphone-for-windows-api/

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How to add new numbers to your dial list

This blog explains how to add a new, one-off, telephone number to your dial list to call. It applies to the team edition of Acarda Outbound and the solo edition when you set the Agent View screen to Card View. In solo the Agent View is set on a per user basis in Administration under the Setup tab then Users.

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Figure 1: Users Settings for Agent View.

When you set up an outbound calling campaign, usually, in Acarda Outbound Manager, you would import a csv file list of numbers and contact details that you intend to make the calls to. This calling data is referred to as a Dial List because it is a list of numbers to dial for a campaign. When the agents whose team is assigned to the campaign log in they would be sent the numbers to call, one at a time and the number with associated data are displayed in the Acarda Outbound Agent screen in an area referred to as the Dial Card. It is called this because it is like a business card view of one record from the Dial List.

In some cases, however, you may not have a calling list to import into Acarda Outbound. There are situations where the agent is building up the calling list on the fly, for example, they could be working through the telephone book to find numbers to call. Acarda Outbound Agent provides the ability for agents to add a new number to your Dial List for the campaign they are working on. Take the following steps to do this:

1. Finish of any Dial Card record displayed currently in the Dial Card panel by clicking the Call End button.

2. Once you have a blank empty screen click on the Action button and select Add Dial Card.

3. An input box will pop up for you to enter the telephone number you wish to add. Enter the number and then click the OK button. After the Acarda Outbound Server checks the Do not Call list database it will add the telephone number and it will be displayed.

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Figure 2: Agent Screen with blank Dial Card and Action Menu open.

For more details on Acarda Outbound please see http://www.acarda.com/telemarketing-software-team.html. You can download an Acarda Outbound trial via http://www.acarda.com/downloads.html

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How to change the Agent View in Acarda Outbound

In the solo edition of Acarda Outbound there are two ways of viewing the data, one is “List View” which shows a list of numbers to call, the other is “Card View” which is one record at a time and how it is in the team edition. This blog I will explain how to switch between the views. Please remember this is only for Acarda Outbound Solo as in the team edition the agent always operates in the “Card View” mode.

Figure 1 shows the main screen in Acarda Outbound Solo with the agent displayed in “List View”. “List View” works slightly different to the team edition and presents the agent with a list of all the records in the Dial List in two groups. The lower group shows those not yet called and the top group shows the call backs (which includes redials for busy and no answer). On the left side is displayed a Dial Card for the selected record.

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Figure 1: Solo edition in List View.

The “Card View” layout, shown in figure 2, shows just one lead at a time. This means that the agent of more focused and doesn’t need to think about call backs as the best lead for them to call for that time is displayed in the Dial Card area when the agent clicks Next Dial. The “Card View” is the only mode in the team edition.

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Figure 2: Solo edition in Card View.

These settings are changed under the User Setup (in Setup Tab). See figure 3 and 4. In Acarda Outbound Solo take the following steps:

  1. Click on the Administration tab (rather than the Agent View tab).
  2. Click on the Setup tab, then in the Setup group of icons, click on the Users icon.
  3. On the right side once you select the user you will see “Agent View” setting.
  4. Select either “List View” or “Card View” from the drop down list then click the Enter key. Now when you return to the agent screen you should see the selected layout type.

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Figure 3: User Setup.

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Figure 4: Agent View Setting.

For more details on Acarda Outbound please see http://www.acarda.com/telemarketing-software-team.html  or for the solo edition, http://www.acarda.com/telemarketing-software-solo.html,   You can download an Acarda Outbound trial via http://www.acarda.com/downloads.html

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How to get call backs from other campaigns

In Acarda Outbound there are different types of call backs including Busy re-attempts, No Answer re-attempts, Voice Mail re-attempts and Requested call backs. The Requested call backs are the most important because a prospect or customer has asked the agent to call back at a set date and time. These take priority over all other types of call backs.

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Figure 1: The Call Back Menu Dialog.

Call backs are usually confined to the campaign in which they are set in, so if you change to another campaign you will not receive the Requested call backs unless you enable this feature. To do this, take the following steps.

1. Go to the Call Back Settings screen.

a. In Acarda Outbound Team: open Acarda Outbound Manager click on the Setup tab then in the Setup group of icons, click on the Settings icon.

b. In Acarda Outbound Solo: click on the Administration tab (rather than the Agent View tab) and then the Setup tab, then in the Setup group of icons, click on the Settings icon.

2. Now in the left sidebar you will see the Agent Display branch and also a Call Options branch. Under Call Options click on Call Backs and you will see the Call Back Screen like figure 2. In the second panel, “Call Back Settings”, check the “Enable Global Requested Call Backs” to turn on this feature.

3. In the team edition, in order to have Call Back Options change you need to restart Acarda Outbound Service. This is not necessary in the solo edition. In Acarda Outbound Team: open Acarda Outbound Server Administrator click on Stop then wait, once stopped then click on Start.

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Figure 2: The Call Back Screen.

For more details on Acarda Outbound please see http://www.acarda.com/telemarketing-software-team.html. You can download an Acarda Outbound trial via http://www.acarda.com/downloads.html

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How to fix a remote agent login problem

In Acarda Outbound, Advanced Edition, you can have outbound callers, remote agents, using Acarda Outbound Agent in a remote location from where the main Acarda Outbound Server is located. This is great for agents working from home or even in another country.

This blog will detail how to go about solving the problem where a remote agent that used to be able to login is no longer able to login. Usually re-installing Acarda Outbound will not help this situation. Take the following steps:

1. Confirm that the agent that is installed on the same computer as the Acarda Outbound Server can log in.

2. If it cannot log in then check that the Acarda Outbound Server has started and also that the username and password are correct. In one case we had no further agents could log in because the hard drive on the server computer was full.

3. Assuming the local agent can log in check that another remote agent can log in from a different computer to the one having problems. If no remote agents can log in then you need to check that the main office router and port forwarding is set up correctly. Also check you are using the correct public static IP address or domain name to reach the office.

4. Check that you have an internet connection by browsing to a website that you know usually works.

5. If one remote agent can log in while another cannot log in then try using the same user name at both locations to ensure it is not a user/password issue. Also check that the server computer name is correct. You can see the server computer name on the login screen at the bottom (see figure 1).

 

 

agent-login-screenFigure 1: Login Screen

6. If the server computer name is correct then re-check you are using the correct user name and password. Also confirm again that an agent at another remote location can login. If everything looks correct then run any windows updates and restart your computer and go through these steps again to re-test.

7. If still no success then please email us your log files which are located in the C:\ProgramData\Acarda\Acarda Outbound\Logs folder. We would like to see log files for recent days from the agent computer that is having problems, an agent computer that works successfully and the server computer.

8. If the server computer name is not correct then enter into the settings screen to update the server name by typing the word “showsettings” into the user name and clicking the OK button. Now re-test to confirm the agent can now log in. If the agent is still not able to log in please send log files.

For more details on Acarda Outbound please see http://www.acarda.com/telemarketing-software-team.html. You can download an Acarda Outbound trial via http://www.acarda.com/downloads.html

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How to dial out with AltiGen

There are two methods for Acarda Outbound to dial out with the AltiGen phone system. The first is via the AltiGen MaxAgent softphone and the second, is directly with the AltiGen Phone System through AltiGen’s SDK. This blog will explain how to configure Acarda Outbound for each of these two approaches.

These instructions apply to both the Team and Solo Editions of Acarda Outbound. For Acarda Outbound Team: In Acarda Outbound Agent click on the Tools menu up the top right side of the screen and select the Dialing Device submenu. For Acarda Outbound Solo: Click on the Agent View tab and in the top right, click the Tools menu and select the Dialing Device submenu.

AltiGen MaxAgent Softphone

Dialing out via the MaxAgent softphone does not require the AltiGen edition of Acarda Outbound. AltiGen’s MaxAgent must be installed, running and logged in before continuing. Select AltiGen MaxAgent from the drop down list and click the Test Connection button. You should see feedback on screen saying that the connection was successful. Click Save to select this option and close the Dialing Device screen.

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Figure 1: The AltiGen MaxAgent dialing device selection.

AltiGen Phone System through AltiGen’s SDK

Dialing out directly with the AltiGen Phone System is only available in the Acarda Outbound – AltiGen Edition from an authorized AltiGen Reseller Partner. This is a much tighter integration and requires an AltiGen SDK license (Client Application SDK Session License). The advantages of this approach include the ability to dial out with both physical desktop phones connected to the AltiGen Phone System in addition to the MaxAgent softphone, being able to set the outgoing caller ID number, optional do not disturb mode, and a greater level of line status detail. This is our recommended way to dial out with an AltiGen phone system.

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Figure 2: The AltiGen Phone System dialing device selection.

When you select the AltiGen Phone System for the dialing device you need to enter the phone system’s server address. If you want to prevent inbound calls being sent to this extension then check the Do Not Disturb Mode check box. There are three login options: The first, Prompt, will ask you to provide login details every time you start Acarda Outbound Agent, the second, System, will save the extension and password for any Acarda Outbound username, the third, User, will save the extension and password on a per user bases so each user logged into Acarda Outbound can have a different extension and password set. These settings are saved onto the Agent station only – you will need to reconfigure your login if you change Agent computers.

For more details on Acarda Outbound please see http://www.acarda.com/telemarketing-software-team.html. You can download an Acarda Outbound trial via http://www.acarda.com/downloads.html

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How to prefix telephone numbers when dialing

Sometimes your calling list may have telephone numbers in it that require digit prefixes such as area codes place in front of the telephone numbers. Another example is when you have a phone system that requires a 1 or a 9 digit to get an outside line.

To set up a prefix you need to add it into the Digit Translation table which can be found be taking the following steps:

  1. In the solo edition of Acarda Outbound, first click on the Administration tab and then the Setup tab. In the team edition, open Acarda Outbound Manager and click on the Setup tab.
  2. In the Setup group of icons click on the Settings icon.
  3. In the left sidebar you will see the Agent Display branch and also a Call Options branch. Under Call Options click on Telephony.

Now to add, for example, a prefix of 1:

  1. Click on the New button under the Digit Translation table.
  2. Leaving the Pattern box empty click on the OK button and that will add a new line to the Digit Translation table.
  3. Select the new row and tab in the grid twice to get to Prefix column.
  4. Enter a 1 then press enter key.

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Figure 1: The Digit Translation table showing a 1 prefix entry.

You can add more complex rules by using the Pattern to match the telephone numbers that start with a certain pattern and only those numbers will have the rule applied. For example those telephone numbers that start with a 302 could have the 302 removed. This could be for the case where 302 is a local exchange and it may be preferred to dial them with that exchange code. Figure 2 shows how this would look set up in the Digit Translation table.

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Figure 2: The Digit Translation table now also with removing 302 digits.

For more details on Acarda Outbound please see http://www.acarda.com/telemarketing-software-team.html. You can download an Acarda Outbound trial via http://www.acarda.com/downloads.html

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