Noda Contact Center in Romanian Automatization of the call center for Moldtelecom, the national network operator of the Republic of Moldova

The foundations for Moldtelecom were laid in 1993 (during the restructuring of the telecoms industry in the Republic of Moldova). In 1999 the company was reorganized into AO Moldtelecom, 100% of whose shares were held by the government. By the end of 2012 the company’s assets were valued at 5.5 billion Moldovan leu. Its yearly revenue amounts to 2.3 billion lei (approximately 70 billion USD). More than 4000 people are employed by the company, while it boasts close to two million clients. Moldtelecom offers standard telephony services, access to broadband internet, digital IPTV, and Unité 4G mobile telephony. The company makes up 97.3% of the market for land line connections in the Republic. Moldtelecom internet is accessible by 90% of the country’s population. It is the only provider in Moldova that offers internet access in rural areas. Users access the global network by means of optical fiber (MaxFiber) and ADSL technology (MaxDSL).

Since 2009 (when company sales fell in the wake of the global crisis) Moldtelecom has demonstrated confident growth in key indicators. In 2012 the number of Unité 4G users grew by 34%, the number of digital television users by 31%, and the number of broadband internet users by 44%. The load on the call center has grown along with the growth in the client base, and it was already unable to meet the needs of the dynamically growing company. 

Firstly, information about users with whom call center operators worked was saved in different informational systems, while the operators were forced to continuously switch between the windows of different programs. Secondly, many operations (putting together repair applications, outgoing collections calls, client redirection to the IVR to evaluate service quality, etc.) were done manually. Thirdly, the solution in use only provided voice channels. In addition, the language chosen via the IVR menu was not taken into account by the system when transferring incoming calls. This created additional hardships when bringing in personnel, as the personnel department had to hire operators who spoke both Romanian and Russian. 

Given that prospects for the company’s further growth depended on the quality of its phone service, Moldtelecom management decided to modernize the call center.

Solution and contractor selection

An open tender was announced to select the new call center platform. Several integrators offering different platforms, among which AVAYA and Genesys deserve particular notice, participated in the tender. Most important in the selection was the ability to quickly and flexibly integrate Moldtelecom’s many informational systems, as well as the functionality and reliability of the solutions under review. As well, the integrators’ industry-related success stories and profile experience were reviewed. As a result, preference was given to Noda Contact Center, already in use at over 50 telecom company call centers. Even at the tender stage the NODA team had a system project developed that included DELL server equipment, AudioCodes Mediant 2000, Fastwire OpenCA, and NODA software: Document Management, Contact Center, and Network Manager.

Project goals and objectives

The implemented solution had to have parameters that provided for its concrete work in the network and interaction with Moldtelecom’s informational infrastructure. The project included integrating a bilingual system for authorization and tariffing paid service into the call center. The results of the tariffing had to be transmitted back into the bilingual system. Integration with other systems for maintaining Moldtelecom’s client servicing business processes was also included. The program interface and proposed solution had to both be fully localized.

The communications part of the platform had to provide the ability to organize 20 PRI E1 conversational streams with the support of SS-7 signaling as well as support for 500 simultaneous SIP connections and the creation of 1200 IVR channels. In addition, the new platform had to include the ability to interact with clients through different communication channels (email, SMS, etc.). A “televoting” system had to be implemented in the system to call back digital TV users. 

Implementing the project

Up to 45 people were involved in the project’s implementation at various stages. The core of the project team was made up of three project managers (one from each side), three NODA engineers, and managers from key sub departments of Moldtelecom’s call center.The implementation of the new call center platform was broken up into five stages:

  • Development of the project documentation packet (including specifications for setting up the processes in the document circulation system)
  • Software, database management system, and equipment installation and basic configuration
  • Setup of services and processes that did not require reworking
  • Reworking services; integration and implementation of new functionality
  • Operational testing 
Platform functionality was brought into operation in stages. Only six months after beginning the process the call center’s employees began working with the new system. Considering that the operational testing of the system in all took approximately four months, the project was totally completed in one year.

Project results

As a result of the project the Moldtelecom call center received a reliable, modern platform integrated with all its critically important business processes: Billing (BillMaster, MindBill), IN-platform, BroadBandSupportManager, UniteInfo, and ABR. To interact with the existing telephone network 20 European standard E1 (G.703) conversation streams were set up with the support of OKC7 signaling (used in the majority of general use networks).

Tariffing mechanisms for incoming and outgoing services were implemented in the solution. Tariffing results are recorded in the CDR (call detail record), providing for the logging of all user actions (including paid service selection in the IVR). All recorded data is accessible in the bilingual system for further processing. 

The new platform expanded the methods of interaction with clients. Different connection channels can now be used for that purpose. The system automatically identifies the type of incoming data (voice, email, SMS) as well as the device and program used by clients. When setting up televoting the platform logs the number of connections made to dedicated numbers in real time and immediately kicks out the results during the voting session. 

The amount of manual labor was significantly reduced. The segment of services bringing the company additional revenue (Alarm Clock, Congratulations, Exact Time, Weather Forecast, Exchange Rates, Horoscope, Fortune-telling, Funny Stories, Jokes, Numerological Forecast, etc.) was completely automated, in addition to fixed and mobile balance inquiries. 

Tech support was optimized. Incoming calls are serviced by the IVR script, which offers a choice of languages (Russian or Romanian). Calls are distributed to operators on the basis of that choice, taking into account their skill as Russian or Romanian speakers. After speaking with a tech support operator the client is automatically directed into the IVR menu for the opportunity to evaluate the quality of the service.

The efficiency of collections work was increased. Thanks to implementing the “single operator workspace” principle, where all collections information is reflected, operators can make calls to phone numbers from the “one click” form. In addition, the system allows users to make automatic calls with notifications about the amount owed and necessity of paying it off.
Thanks to the integrations made, lists for automated calls can be downloaded from different systems, uploading the resulting statistics after the call.

In all, the project automated 200 workspaces. Thanks to the localization of the implemented solution, users can select the programmed interface version most convenient for them: Romanian, Russian, or English.

Vadim Petrov, technical director, Moldtelecom

When choosing a platform we didn’t rely on the information from the general presentations, instead trying to review every solution from the point of view of our objectives, comparing their functionality, reliability, and flexibility. Our call center uses information from more than ten informational systems that needed to somehow make friends with the new platform. In addition, we wanted the new program to be able to talk with Moldovans in their native language. Naumen’s product has proved to be an excellent acquisition.

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