December 29, 2016
Most contact/call center platforms have a ceiling. The software can only support so many agents, and as a growing company approaches that threshold, there can be a lot of uncertainty.
Should we upgrade to a larger solution?
Does our current platform’s manufacturer even offer a larger solution?
How can we navigate this process?
The answers to these questions will vary depending upon the manufacturer in question, but for contact/call centers using Cisco Unified Contact Center Express (UCCX), there is a clear path forward. Cisco contact/call centers who are in a position to upgrade their platform can move to Cisco Packaged Contact Center Enterprise (PCCE) with relative ease.
Naturally, it’s not as simple as flipping a switch, and there are a few factors you should be aware of before moving forward with the upgrade.
Cisco UCCE vs. PCCE
In addition to PCCE, Cisco offers Unified Contact Center Enterprise (UCCE). The two solutions are quite similar. They both run on the Finesse Agent Desktop. They both can support contact/call centers far larger than the 400 agent limit on UCCX. They both include some advanced features out-of-the-box that used to require additional customization, configuration, and integration in order to deploy in a UCCX environment.
The difference between UCCE and PCCE is mostly a matter of convenience. UCCE is best deployed in only the largest, most sprawling contact/call center organizations with multiple locations, thousands of agents, and an expansive infrastructure. It is extremely malleable and designed to support even the most complex operations.
PCCE condenses the solution into something that requires less engineering time to implement. It allows up to 2,000 agents and can be deployed with greater speed. As the name implies, Packaged Contact Center Enterprise “packages” a version of the product into a solution designed to meet the needs of the vast majority of contact/call centers larger than 400 agents. For that reason, we will in most cases advise our clients to pursue a PCCE solution for their upgrade.
5 Things to Know about Your Contact/Call Center Upgrade
- Nothing Carries Over: Unfortunately, aspects of your UCCX deployment will not carry over. You cannot reuse scripts or configurations. It’s a completely different environment.
- An Opportunity to Reassess Call Flow: Instead of copying the old call flow, use this as an opportunity to reassess the operation. It is always hard to restructure call flow while phones are still ringing off the hook. If scripts and configurations need to be reproduced anyway, this is your best opportunity to streamline other aspects of the contact/call center as well.
- Agent Licenses and Ports: In UCCX, available agent licenses and ports are linked together. To get one, you must purchase the other. This could lead to a contact/call center with 50 agents purchasing 150 agent licenses simply to acquire more call ports. In PCCE, this is no longer the case. The company can purchase exactly as many ports or agents as they require at the time and easily expand should the contact/call center continue to grow.
- Take Advantage of Standard Features: As mentioned earlier, there are a number of features in PCCE that required customization to integrate into a UCCX environment. With PCCE, these features are standard, so if you have not been taking full advantage of them, now is the time to work them into your operation. These features include but are not limited to agent whisper, built-in callbacks from queue, and post-call surveys.
- Price Break on Agent Licenses: By upgrading to PCCE, UCCX customers will receive a price break on new agent licenses purchased, however, this discount is only available once. Strategize with your technology consultant on the best approach for your particular organization.
A Bold Step Forward
The prospect of upgrading the contact/call center platform may be daunting, but it is a sign of healthy growth in a company. Establishing the new environment may be more difficult than you imagined at first, but PCCE has a very high ceiling for the number of agents. Truly, an upgrade from UCCX to PCCE is not a short term fix or a temporary band-aid for a growing contact/call center. It is a long term solution that will allow your contact/call center to expand to meet your business’s needs.
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