Contact Center Industry News

TMCNet:  How to decide on a recovery site for your contact centre [Bizcommunity (South Africa)]

[July 13, 2014]

How to decide on a recovery site for your contact centre [Bizcommunity (South Africa)]

(Bizcommunity (South Africa) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Contact or call centres have become vital sales and support hubs for many companies, which means that a recovery plan forms a vital component of their business continuity strategies. But an effective disaster recovery site for a contact centre must meet certain criteria and it's vital not to underestimate their importance.

"Contact centres are complex institutions and many dimensions need to be considered when deciding on a recovery site," said Steven King, business development manager of ContinuitySA, supplier of business continuity management services.

"Based on our years of experience in providing this service to blue-chip clients across the continent, we believe that the following issues need to be considered when making a decision" - Does the recovery site operate on the infrastructure-as-a-service model? The contact centre recovery site needs to have the same level of technology as the production site and it needs to be highly flexible in how it provides that infrastructure. Companies that are taking care of their own recovery site may find this a challenge, particularly as they would typically use production staff to maintain it - thus spreading scarce resources even thinner. If the recovery centre is operated by a third party, it should be on infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) model. Not only does this remove the expenses from the capital to the operational expenses budget, it also effectively shifts the responsibility to the service provider.

Using IaaS also means that the infrastructure can be scaled up and down, something that can be vital during a recovery. "When an organisation invokes a disruption it will typically move around one-third of its contact centre workforce onto the recovery site, and may only provide for a corresponding proportion of normal voice and data traffic. However, it is usually the case that for the first few days after a disaster there is a significant spike in calls," said King. "Under an IaaS model, the provider could scale up capacity, such as the bandwidth required, for that period." - Is the technology at the right level? When assessing the merits of a site's technology infrastructure, the following four areas need detailed scrutiny: PBX, switches, routers and phone/ data lines. Is the PBX supported and can it handle the call volumes? Are the routers and switches able to be configured for the desired call flow - absolutely vital in a contact centre? A related question is whether the building is serviced by multiple telecommunications providers. A contact centre is only as good as its links to the outside world and being restricted to one supplier is not acceptable, from the cost and redundancy points of view.

- Is the building itself adequate? Here one should consider not only the question of whether the space on offer is sufficient but also security. If the contact centre is a 24/7 operation, for example, does the security accommodate shifts? Does the building have enough generators and fuel reserves, as well as uninterruptable power supply units? Is the building on key transport routes? - Have the seats been purchased under the right model? Seats in a recovery centre offered by a third party can be purchased either on a syndicated or dedicated basis. Syndicated seats are shared with other clients, reducing the cost considerably but are offered on a first-come-first-served basis in the event of both companies experiencing a disaster at the same time, in the same geographic location. Even when this happens, said King, if the service provider has done its capacity planning well, it should still have enough seats for both clients.

- Can you test if your contact centre is ready for an incident or disaster? It's absolutely essential that every element of a business continuity plan can be tested and that regular tests are undertaken - contact centres are no exception. In practice, most companies find it hard to test an in-sourced recovery contact centre recovery site properly and regularly because of the impact on their current business operations.

All rights reserved.

(c) 2014 Provided by SyndiGate Media Inc. (

[ Back To Cloud Contact Center's Homepage ]


Featured Resources

Featured Report
Millennial Research on Customer Service Expectations

Millennial Research on Customer Service Expectations

The "why" behind this research is simple: our clients recognize that different generations bring different expectations, varied communication preferences and new customer service patterns to the customer experience...
Featured Report
Optimizing the Customer Experience through Cloud Contact Centers

Optimizing the Customer Experience through Cloud Contact Centers

Adoption of cloud contact centers is on the rise. Findings from Aberdeen's January 2014 'Public Cloud vs. On-Premise: How to More Effectively Deploy a Cloud Center' study shows that 31% of contact centers are deployed in the cloud, and our related blog post highlights that companies anticipate their adoption of cloud technology to rise further throughout 2014...
Featured Report
Aberdeen report

Aberdeen Report: Cloud for Mid-Sized Contact Centers – What You Must Know

Cloud Technology is opening new doors for many businesses. However, it does so only when it's combined with the use of best practices and key technology enablers. This document highlights the adoption of cloud technology by mid-size contact centers and illustrates the reasons driving their investments...
Featured Whitepaper
Aberdeen report

Seven Critical Capabilities to Demand From Your Cloud Contact Center Provider

To deliver a world-class customer experience, your contact center must be flexible and reliable, while providing all the tools agents and supervisors need to manage their workflows. Here are seven critical capabilities to look for when deploying a contact center in the cloud...
Featured Webinar

Contact Center Economics and the Cloud

Together, Bob and Drew will help you understand the economic value of upgrading technology, important business and financial considerations, and how to compare total cost of ownership of a premises vs. cloud or hosted solution. Watch the webinar on-demand now...
Featured Datasheet
Zipwire Cloud Contact Center

Zipwire Cloud Contact Center

The appeal of moving services to the cloud is obvious. Cloud services offer reliability and robust feature sets without the need to implement or maintain complex contact center infrastructure. The Zipwire™ cloud-based contact center allows businesses to leverage the flexibility and cost savings of cloud architecture while offering a seamless, first-class customer experience...