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TELEMATION Computer Telephony Integration (CTI)


TELEMATION, a call center and sales management system from Database Systems Corp., supports a powerful CTI option linking call center functions with telephony equipment. All call centers share a common attribute; i.e. the use of phone systems to contact (or be contacted by) outside companies or individuals. This can be as simple as a single phone on an agents desk or a center with thousands of agents (TSRs) working with multiple phone systems that distribute or initiate calls.

CTI can be broken down into 2 simple modes: INBOUND and OUTBOUND. Call centers can usually be described as predominantly inbound or outbound, but more and more centers are performing both functions, and in some cases the same operators are taking inbound and initiating outbound calls. When the call center is performing both tasks simultaneously, the process is described as CALL BLENDING. In this case, the phone system (and supporting call center system) determines each operator’s status and skill and transfers an inbound call to this operator, or initiates an automatic outbound call using a PREDICTIVE algorithm and connects the operator with the contacted party.

This document describes the features and functions of TELEMATION’s CTI capability. It also describes the interconnectivity between TELEMATION, TELEMATION’s switch control programs, TELEMATION’s list management processor, and the various available phone switches.


Inbound calls are handled through TELEMATION CTI using the phone switch call control tables and TELEMATION’s internal management of a pool of available TSRs. Optionally, TELEMATION can query a database to match the caller with previously known information about the caller. Thus, if the inbound call is coming into a Customer Support Center, the caller could be identified by CALLER ID, or if the phone switch is equipped with a Voice Response Unit, by the information collected by the phone system prior to connection to TELEMATION. Once the caller is identified, the appropriate caller information can be transferred to an agent’s display unit. TELEMATION is also capable of routing a call to the appropriate CAMPAIGN based upon the number dialed by the caller (DNIS). Thus, when a call is received by the phone switch, TELEMATION obtains the DNIS and performs a SCREEN POP with the proper screen associated with this campaign, and displays this on the TSR’s display unit without any action taken by the TSR. The TELEMATION administrator can designate the appropriate agents capable of handling each caller by identifying the proper skill set required to serve each caller or call campaign.

As TSRs enter TELEMATION during the workday, they identify themselves to the system as being available to receive inbound calls. TELEMATION notifies the phone switch as each TSR logs in. As inbound calls are received by the phone switch, they are automatically connected by the switch to one of these available TSRs (again, based upon skill set when appropriate). When the call is connected to the TSR, the phone system simultaneously transfers the caller information to TELEMATION which updates the TSR’s display unit with the calling party information (if available) and the appropriate campaign screen. The TSR is now unavailable to receive other inbound phone calls until the current call is handled. The TSR can be automatically returned to the available queue when the current call is disconnected or, in some cases where some wrap-up work needs to be performed, the TSR can control availability status by hitting a button informing TELEMATION that he/she is now available to accept another call. Obviously, the TSRs can remove themselves from the availability queue by hitting a button when they go on break or finish their work period.


  • Get and Set Agent Status

  • Answer Phone (Accept Inbound Call)

  • Connect Call To Agent

  • Disconnect Call


The outbound call process within TELEMATION is very similar to inbound as far as TSR operation is concerned during the initial entry of an agent into TELEMATION. After log in, the TSR identifies that he or she is available to begin outbound calling. After this point, however, the TSR may have more control over who is called and when the call is initiated.

There are several different types of outbound calling using CTI technology. The simplest method is to allow the TSR to select the company or person to call and tell the phone switch to place the call by pushing a button. Call queues can be obtained from existing customer or prospect databases, or can be external lists obtained through call list database search companies. The call queue process can be random, or the calling agent can manage his or her own call list, prospects or customers. The call queue can be triggered by date and time, with the TSR able to step through the list at his or her discretion. The advantage of this method is that the TSR has the greatest freedom of selection, but usually the volume of phone calls made during a day is lower. When the TSR decides the number to be dialed, he or she simply pushes a button. TELEMATION notifies the phone switch that a specific phone number is to be dialed and informs the switch which TSR is to be connected with this outbound line. The TSR is automatically connected to this outbound line and hears the dial sequence. It is up to the TSR to determine if the call is successfully connected to a live person and to handle all the various results of this attempted call, such as No Answer, Busy, Answering Machine, etc. Once the TSR has either talked to the called party or determined that the call cannot be properly completed, it is once again up to the TSR to return to the available queue by pushing the appropriate button.

The next three methods require what is known as a LIST MANAGEMENT SYSTEM. In simple terms, a list manager is an external process that determines which calls are to be made by the TSRs. The TSR does not have the freedom to select the next call, although in two of the three methods, the TSR can override the list manager and decline to call a customer or prospect. The list manager is a separate process which communicates with the TELEMATION administrator, who controls the call flow, and with all of the TSRs that are put under its control. The list manager does not interact directly with the phone system.

The first of these methods is known as PREVIEW DIALING. With this method, the TSR is presented on the display screen with information about the party to be called prior to initiating the call. The TSR can review such information as CALL HISTORY, which is a complete historical record of the party to be called including date, time of each call, who made the call, whether the call was successfully completed, who was contacted, the disposition of the call, and important information relating to the call such as prior purchases, customer problems or complaints, etc. Armed with this information, the TSR can be better prepared to talk intelligently and informatively with the called party. When the TSR has completed this review, he or she can simply push a button and the call will be placed in the same manner as the first method. This method is used predominantly with business to business calling, gives the TSR somewhat less control over who is to be called, but also presents a more controlled work flow to the TSR. The interaction between TELEMATION and the phone switch is identical to the first calling method when the TSR pushes the call button.

The second method is referred to as PROGRESSIVE DIALING, also referred to as FORCED PREVIEW DIALING. This method is identical to PREVIEW, except for one important feature. The TSR is given only so much time to review the called party information presented on the screen. After so many seconds, TELEMATION will automatically initiate the call without the TSR intervention. This is also called hands off dialing. If, on the other hand, the TSR decides that the call is not to be made, he or she can simply push another button, the call will not be initiated, and another potential call will be presented on the screen. The advantage of this method is that each operator can make more calls in a day, and the pace of calling can be more frequent than with the prior methods. The TSR, however, has less control over the review process.

The final method is becoming a popular method of outbound dialing and is gaining widespread interest within the call center industry. It is known as PREDICTIVE DIALING. This method removes the TSR from the decision process of who is called and when. TELEMATION’s list manager communicates indirectly with the phone switch by passing phone numbers to be dialed at a statistically determined pace. TELEMATION uses its own predictive process to determine the number of calls to place based upon the number of TSRs, statistical factors such as the number of connections per dialed numbers, average phone call length, wrap-up time, and other administrator defined parameters. This process operates independent of the TELEMATION TSRs. It accepts phone numbers from the list manager in bulk and initiates calls without connecting the calls to TSRs. When the phone switch detects an answer, it signals TELEMATION, which informs the switch to connect the call to a particular TSR (who is the best and next available). TELEMATION simultaneously displays the called party’s information on that TSR’s display unit. This method is becoming very popular, especially with the evolution of the phone systems that can detect answering machines, and other non-productive connections. When the phone systems detect non-productive calls, TELEMATION does not connect these calls to TSRs. Instead, the phone numbers are recycled and the phone system is instructed to make the next call. Call centers are realizing tremendous efficiency gains using this technique. It is most popular with Business to Consumer calling, although some Business to Business call centers are also using Predictive Dialing systems.


  • Get and Set Agent Status

  • Dial Number (Perform Outbound Call)

  • Obtain Call Status (Predictive Dial)

  • Recycle and Status Non-productive Calls

  • Connect Call To Agent

  • Disconnect Call


There are certain phone system features that are common to both inbound and outbound processes, once the TSR and called party has been connected via the phone switch. Some of these features are dependent upon the particular phone switch. (Refer to the Features Chart later in this document.) These features are embedded in TELEMATION and only require the TSR to push a button to initiate the process.

  • Call Transfers

    TELEMATION allows calls to be transferred in several ways. First, a call can be transferred to the TSR’s supervisor. Likewise, the call can be transferred to another TSR. In either case, the call can be either a BLIND transfer (where the transfer is initiated by the TSR without waiting to see if the transfer was successful to a supervisor or TSR) or can be ANNOUNCED (where the TSR waits to determine if the transfer was successful). Calls can also be transferred to a Voice Mail system.

  • Call Monitoring

    A TELEMATION supervisor can monitor any call by simply identifying the TSR currently on the phone.

  • Conference Calls

A TSR can initiate conference calls. This can be with a supervisor or another TSR. Likewise a third party on an outside line can be connected in a conference call. A conference call can be temporarily suspended by placing the supervisor or third party on hold or by placing the called party on hold. Likewise, either or both of these parties can be taken off hold by the TSR, simply by pushing a button on the display screen. The TSR can also permanently drop the supervisor or third party from the conference call. The TSR can likewise drop the called party (or caller) from the conference call.

  • Placing Call On Hold

A TSR can place a call on hold anytime during the connection, take another call or initiate another call, and return to the original call from anywhere within TELEMATION. TELEMATION still remains connected to the original call during this process, even though the party is on hold.


  • Get Call Status

  • Call status

  • Get and set agent status

  • Check phone status

  • Transfer call to supervisor

  • Transfer call to other extension

  • Conference call with supervisor/TSR

  • Conference call with outside line

  • Monitor another call

  • Place call on hold

  • Reconnect call on hold

  • Drop third party from conference call

  • Drop supervisor from conference and try next supervisor

  • Drop second party from conference call

  • Place third party in conference call on hold

  • Reconnect third party in conference call previously on hold


TELEMATION is able to query and determine certain call status information from the phone switch. This status information may or may not be available depending upon the phone switch.

  • Phone available and connected

  • Phone available and connected by positive voice detection (DIALOGIC)

  • Phone unavailable with NO DISCONNECT

  • Phone unavailable due to BUSY SIGNAL

  • Phone unavailable due to NO ANSWER

  • Phone unavailable due to ANSWERING MACHINE

  • Phone unavailable due to DEAD AIR

  • Phone unavailable due to NUMBER DISCONTINUED

  • Phone unavailable due to SPECIAL INFORMATION TONE (SIT)

  • Phone unavailable due to FAXTON



  • Solid State

  • ATT G2 Definity (ASAI)

  • Excel PCX 512

  • DSC Dialogic ACD

  • TSAPI Interface

  • TAPI 2.0

  • Northern Telecom

  • ATT G3 Definity (LUCENT)

  • Fujitsu F9600 Series

  • Etc.







TAPI 2.0


Check Phone Status







Accept Inbound Call






Initiate Outbound Call







Disconnect Call







Transfer Call to Supervisor




Transfer Call to Other Extension




Conference Call With Supervisor



Conference Call With Other Extension



Monitor Another Call






Place Call on Hold






Reconnect Call on Hold






Drop Third Party From Conference



Drop Supervisor From Conference



Drop Second Party From Conference




TELEMATION contains a predictive dial control function for use by the system administrator. This function is used to define the flow and operation of TELEMATION’s predictive processes, including TELEMATION itself, TM_ACDMON (the switch control process) and TM_LMGR (TELEMATION’s list manager). The predictive dial system allows the administrator to control and manipulate the following functions:

  • Start and stop phone system servers (TM_ACDMON)

  • Predictive Dial throttle (minimizing nuisance rate)

  • Call Back times based upon call disposition

  • Weekend versus Weekday call back logic

  • Use of specific types of call backs based upon time of day

  • Use special call back cycle codes

The systems administrator can also monitor the following statistics from the control function:

  • Total Calls

  • TSRs Logged in

  • TSRs currently Idle

  • Number of calls being dialed

  • Number of calls needed from the List Manager

  • Total Number of Calls in the queue

  • Nuisance Rate

  • Answer Rate

  • Busy Rate

  • No Answer Rate

  • Idle Time

  • Answer Time

  • Talk Time

  • Wrap-up Time


One of the more powerful features of TELEMATION is its list management system. This function under TELEMATION’s administration section allows the system administrator to define lists of customers or prospects with phone numbers to be passed to the TELEMATION TSRs or the TELEMATION’s predictive dial system (TM_ACDMON). The administrator can create an unlimited number of list definitions from any campaign. A list is either an entire database of contacts and phone numbers or a subset of a database. Once a list is defined in TELEMATION, the administrator can activate it. Once activated, the list manager process (TM_LMGR) reads the list parameters and begins processing the contacts and phones defined in the list. A TELEMATION list contains the following properties:

  • Search Criteria - (Optional). This feature enables the systems administrator to create a subset list of only selected contacts from a campaign list. If Search Criteria is not specified, the entire list is defined. A list can be dynamic or static. If dynamic, the search criterion is applied to the campaign list at the time the list is activated and read by the list manager. If static, the list is created immediately, prior to being activated by the administrator. Also, the query system TRANSVIEW can be used to create its own set of contacts and phone numbers. This set can be used as an advanced subset of the campaign list by the list manager and can be customized by the systems administrator. Generating sorted or ordered lists is one use of TRANSVIEW, as well as generating a random list.

  • Start and End Date and Time - Each list can have a starting and ending date and time to inform the list manager (TM_LMGR) when to start reading from this list and passing phone numbers to the TSRs or to the Predictive System.

  • Call Back Time - Each contact and phone number in a list can have its own call back time of day. A list can be defined to honor this time or to ignore it on a call by call basis.

  • List Priority - Each list can be given its own priority relative to other lists that may be activated by the systems administrator. Thus, if two lists are active (A and B), list A can be defined such that for every contact and phone read from it during its activation period, two contacts and phone numbers from list B can be processed, etc. List priorities can change during a normal workday to accommodate changes in time zone, etc.

  • List Chaining - Another important feature is TELEMATION’s list chaining capability. A priority may exist between 2 or more lists. List A can be defined to be processed first, and when all contacts and phones have been processed from this list, list B can be processed.

  • List Completion Report - The systems administrator can designate a special report to be executed when a list has been fully processed by the list manager.

Once the administrator has created one or more call lists, another TELEMATION function can be invoked to startup the list manager server. The administrator can then monitor the server and key statistic information can be either displayed numerically or graphically on the administrator’s display unit. The administrator can obtain the following information:

  • Campaign Name

  • List Name

  • List’s Priority Ratio

  • Total Number of calls in the List

  • Number of calls queued ahead

  • Number of calls currently being handled by the TSRs

  • Total number of calls already processed

  • List’s active status

Besides the above information, the administrator can obtain special displays based upon TSR number, name or by campaign. These displays can be customized graphs as well, with periodic refresh capability.


There are several components that comprise the TELEMATION CTI system. Each component is a separate process that performs one or more distinct tasks:


The process that directs the TSR user interface is known as TELEMATION. This process is directly or indirectly connected to the TSR’s display unit and controls the processing of TSR commands in the form of push buttons and function keys. Besides handling all of the other contact management functions, TELEMATION performs the following CTI functions:

  • Communicates TSR commands to TM_ACDMON (ACD/Switch Control Process)

  • Determines the proper campaign based upon the caller input, the number dialed by the caller, or the campaign associated with the predictive dialed number.

  • Performs Screen Pops

  • Searches Database for contact information and displays this on TSR display unit

TM_ACDMON (ACD/Switch Control Process)

This process is the primary link between TELEMATION and the phone system(s) connected to TELEMATION. It talks directly to most phone systems (except TSAPI). In the case of TSAPI, it communicates through another server called DSC_TSAPI (running on the TSAPI server). TM_ACDMON is phone switch specific. There are multiple versions of this process, one for each of the supported phone switches. In fact, a call center can have multiple phone systems connected to TELEMATION. Generally, each call center has one phone system, and multiple campaigns can be run with this single phone switch. However, each campaign within TELEMATION can be attached to its own phone system. In this case, multiple TM_ACDMONs can be running at the same time. The only restriction is that any given TSR can only be assigned to one phone system in its call control tables. (This restriction obviously prevents a TSR from receiving two simultaneous calls at the same time from two different phone switches.)

TELEMATION determines what phone actions are to occur based upon TSR direction and availability. It communicates this action to TM_ACDMON with a generic message or option and TM_ACDMON interprets this message and converts it into a phone switch specific command. This command is communicated to the phone switch, which acts upon the message, and returns the results of its activity to TM_ACDMON. TM_ACDMON then returns a generic message or result to TELEMATION.

TM_LMGR (List Manager Process)

    The List Manager Process controls the flow of phone numbers to the phone switch control process, TM_ACDMON, or the flow of numbers to each TSR for PREVIEW and PROGRESSIVE dialing. It manages the database of customers or prospects, and is directed by the TELEMATION systems administrator. If the call center is doing PREDICTIVE dialing, TM_LMGR passes phone numbers to the switch through TM_ACDMON.


    This process resides on the NOVELL (or WINDOWS/NT) network PC and is a process that accepts TSAPI function messages from TM_ACDMON and communicates with a TSAPI server which resides on the same NOVELL (or WINDOWS/NT) PC. The server is switch independent and communicates with another phone switch dependent process; DSC_TSAPI is switch independent.

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