Software Advice helps call centers choose the right computer telephony integration software so they can improve agent interactions and integrate CRM data. How does it work?

Computer Telephony Integration Software


 
Genesys Contact Centre logo
 
Genesys Contact Centre is an omnichannel contact center solution designed for midsize and large companies. It offers multi-channel contact management, automatic call distribution (ACD), interactive voice response (IVR) and computer... Read More
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Genesys Contact Centre is an omnichannel contact center solution designed for midsize and large companies. It offers multi-channel contact management, automatic call distribution (ACD), interactive voice response (IVR) and computer... Read More
 
Five9 Cloud Contact Center logo
 
Five9 is an all-in-one cloud contact center solution for inbound, outbound, blended and omnichannel contact centers world-wide.  Powered by Practical AI, Five9 enables agents to provide customer experiences across phone, email, chat,... Read More
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Five9 is an all-in-one cloud contact center solution for inbound, outbound, blended and omnichannel contact centers world-wide.  Powered by Practical AI, Five9 enables agents to provide customer experiences across phone, email, chat,... Read More
 
Talkdesk Call Center logo
 
Talkdesk is a cloud-based call center solution that helps businesses improve customer satisfaction while simultaneously reducing customer support costs. It uses interactive voice response (IVR), automatic call distribution (ACD) and... Read More
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Talkdesk is a cloud-based call center solution that helps businesses improve customer satisfaction while simultaneously reducing customer support costs. It uses interactive voice response (IVR), automatic call distribution (ACD) and... Read More
 
NICE inContact Cloud Contact Center logo
 
NICE inContact is a SaaS-based call center software that helps businesses to maximizes the quality of leads and minimizes the cost of client interaction. The solution comprises of many features required to process inbound support requests... Read More
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NICE inContact is a SaaS-based call center software that helps businesses to maximizes the quality of leads and minimizes the cost of client interaction. The solution comprises of many features required to process inbound support requests... Read More
 
PureCloud logo
 
PureCloud by Genesys is an on-premise and cloud-based call center solution for businesses of any size and industry. Key modules include Automatic Call Distribution, Interactive Voice Response, Computer Telephony Integration, Auto Dialer,... Read More
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PureCloud by Genesys is an on-premise and cloud-based call center solution for businesses of any size and industry. Key modules include Automatic Call Distribution, Interactive Voice Response, Computer Telephony Integration, Auto Dialer,... Read More

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RingCentral Contact Center logo
 
Cloud communications provider RingCentral has expanded into the Call Center space with their Contact Center solution. The integrated suite powered by inContact offers Automatic Call Distribution, Interactive Voice Response, CTI, Auto... Read More
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Cloud communications provider RingCentral has expanded into the Call Center space with their Contact Center solution. The integrated suite powered by inContact offers Automatic Call Distribution, Interactive Voice Response, CTI, Auto... Read More
 
Cloud Contact Center logo
 
Cloud Contact Center, by Telax Voice Solutions, is a call center management solution designed for SMB companies in various industries. Government agencies, retail, energy, healthcare, insurance, professional services, engineering,... Read More
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Cloud Contact Center, by Telax Voice Solutions, is a call center management solution designed for SMB companies in various industries. Government agencies, retail, energy, healthcare, insurance, professional services, engineering,... Read More
 
Ytel logo
 
Ytel is a cloud-based integrated marketing suite that caters to SMB call centers and businesses with dedicated phone support teams, helping them manage multi-channel communications. The solution offers features including automated... Read More
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Ytel is a cloud-based integrated marketing suite that caters to SMB call centers and businesses with dedicated phone support teams, helping them manage multi-channel communications. The solution offers features including automated... Read More
 
Zendesk logo
 
Zendesk is a cloud-based help desk management solution offering customizable tools to build customer service portal, knowledge base and online communities. The solution offers a customizable front-end portal, live chat features and... Read More
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Zendesk is a cloud-based help desk management solution offering customizable tools to build customer service portal, knowledge base and online communities. The solution offers a customizable front-end portal, live chat features and... Read More
 
Nextiva VoIP logo
 
Nextiva's Business VoIP solutions offer telephony services for small businesses with functionality that eliminates the need for a traditional phone system. The packages include VoIP phone systems, scalable PBX trunks, online faxing... Read More
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Nextiva's Business VoIP solutions offer telephony services for small businesses with functionality that eliminates the need for a traditional phone system. The packages include VoIP phone systems, scalable PBX trunks, online faxing... Read More

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Noble Enterprise logo
 
Noble Enterprise is a call center management solution suitable for businesses of all sizes. Key features include inbound, outbound and blended contact management, predictive dialing, skills-based call routing, digital recording and... Read More
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Noble Enterprise is a call center management solution suitable for businesses of all sizes. Key features include inbound, outbound and blended contact management, predictive dialing, skills-based call routing, digital recording and... Read More
 
PureConnect logo
 
Genesys PureConnect is a hybrid call center solution that provides users with various tools and functionalities, which help them to manage their business operations and communications from a single integrated platform. The solution... Read More
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Genesys PureConnect is a hybrid call center solution that provides users with various tools and functionalities, which help them to manage their business operations and communications from a single integrated platform. The solution... Read More
 
XenCALL Predictive Dialer CRM logo
 
XenCALL is a cloud-based call center solution for companies of all sizes in a variety of industries. Key features include automatic call distribution, interactive voice response, auto dialing, scheduling, performance analytics and... Read More
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XenCALL is a cloud-based call center solution for companies of all sizes in a variety of industries. Key features include automatic call distribution, interactive voice response, auto dialing, scheduling, performance analytics and... Read More
 
CallShaper logo
 
CallShaper is a cloud-based call center management solution suitable for small to midsize businesses. Key features include lead management, real-time reporting, agent monitoring and tablet support. CallShaper enables users to create... Read More
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CallShaper is a cloud-based call center management solution suitable for small to midsize businesses. Key features include lead management, real-time reporting, agent monitoring and tablet support. CallShaper enables users to create... Read More
 
Aspect Via Customer Engagement Platform logo
 
Aspect Via Customer Engagement Platform is a web-based contact center suitable for organizations with 100 or more concurrent and named users. The system is a complete set of customer service capabilities including self-service, omnichannel... Read More
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Aspect Via Customer Engagement Platform is a web-based contact center suitable for organizations with 100 or more concurrent and named users. The system is a complete set of customer service capabilities including self-service, omnichannel... Read More

Call us for a free FastStart Consultation: +1 512 213 0292


 
Salesforce.com Service Cloud logo
 
Service Cloud from SalesForce is a cloud-based customer service management solution that is designed to initiate customer service activities from anywhere. Built on the Salesforce1 Platform, Service Cloud works to centralize and optimize... Read More
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Service Cloud from SalesForce is a cloud-based customer service management solution that is designed to initiate customer service activities from anywhere. Built on the Salesforce1 Platform, Service Cloud works to centralize and optimize... Read More
 
Sharpen logo
 
Sharpen’s cloud-native platform is a SaaS contact center solution for midsize to large enterprise businesses. As an all-in-one solution, the platform provides businesses the ability to communicate with customers by SMS, MMS, live... Read More
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Sharpen’s cloud-native platform is a SaaS contact center solution for midsize to large enterprise businesses. As an all-in-one solution, the platform provides businesses the ability to communicate with customers by SMS, MMS, live... Read More
 
Aspect Unified IP logo
 
Aspect Unified IP is a call center management solution designed for inbound and outbound call centers of all sizes. Key features include automatic call distribution (ACD), interactive voice response (IVR), computer telephony integration... Read More
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Aspect Unified IP is a call center management solution designed for inbound and outbound call centers of all sizes. Key features include automatic call distribution (ACD), interactive voice response (IVR), computer telephony integration... Read More
 
Streams UC logo
 
Streams UC is a cloud-based call center solution by PanTerra that allows users to manage and monitor inbound calls from multiple devices. Key features include CRM integration, internal instant messaging, a unified command center, video... Read More
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Streams UC is a cloud-based call center solution by PanTerra that allows users to manage and monitor inbound calls from multiple devices. Key features include CRM integration, internal instant messaging, a unified command center, video... Read More
 
Primo Dialler logo
 
Primo Dialler is a cloud-based call center solution that offers a predictive dialer, integrated voice response (IVR) and reporting functionalities. The solution caters to industry segments such as insurance, debt collection, energy... Read More
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Primo Dialler is a cloud-based call center solution that offers a predictive dialer, integrated voice response (IVR) and reporting functionalities. The solution caters to industry segments such as insurance, debt collection, energy... Read More
 

Buyer's Guide

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Imagine you’re an agent at a busy call center: you’re fielding dozens of phone calls a day with customers you’ve never met, and you want to make a good impression on all of them. Don’t you want to be as prepared and efficient as possible?

One of the best ways to set up your call center team for success in the environment described is by investing in a system with computer telephony integration (CTI). CTI is an important category of call center software: It enables phone and computer systems to work together for the benefit of your agents and your customers.

In this guide, we’ll break down everything you need to know to choose the right CTI system for your company, such as:

What Is CTI?
Common Functionality of CTI
Benefits of CTI
CTI Implementation Options
Integration Considerations

What Is CTI?

CTI, or computer telephony integration, is also known as “computer-telephone integration” or “computer telephony.” These terms may sound intimidating, but their basic meaning is straightforward: CTI is technology that lets you use a computer to initiate, manage and enhance your phone calls.

CTI is often used as a jargon term for describing integrations between a phone system and a customer relationship management (CRM) system that has already been deployed. These integrations add features to enhance both systems and help agents better handle interactions.

An example of how they do this is “screen pops”—a window that pops up on an agent's computer screen when they have an incoming phone call. That window displays information about the caller, e.g., address and interaction history, which is pulled from the call center’s existing CRM program.

3CLogic and Zoho CRM integration showing the “click-to-dial” function
This is what a screen pop might look like in a typical CTI solution.

 

This phone system-computer coordination is made possible through CTI. Though it’s most common for CTI to be used for CRM integrations, it is also good for other types of integrations.

For instance, many organizations now use CTI to allow their accounting software to interface with their phone system. Agents can call customers with unpaid invoices directly from their accounting software through functionality called “click-to-dial” (more details on this below).

To recap: CTI software acts as a bridge for the exchange of data and functionalities between a company’s phone system and other existing programs, such as CRM or accounting solutions.

Common Functionality of CTI

Vendors offer a variety of functional breadth and depth in their CTI solutions. Here are some of the most common capabilities:

Screen pops In addition to what we’ve already described, screen pops can indicate the priority level of an interaction with a caller based on customer history data from your CRM program. They can also use a customer’s Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system answers to display the purpose of a call (e.g., sales or support).
Click-to-dial This function adds outbound dialing capabilities to the databases of contacts you'd find in a CRM or accounting system. Agents can skip manual dialing and simply click a phone number on their computer screen to place a call.
Caller authentication CTI software screens incoming calls and uses the phone number to find a match in your CRM system. It can confirm the caller’s identity before the call even starts.
Phone controls Users can manage their phone controls through the computer instead of dialing buttons manually. These include the ability to answer, hang-up, conference, forward and transfer calls.
Logging and notes Basic information is automatically logged in the CRM system while the call is in progress, such as the time/date of the call and agent handling it. Agents can also add manual notes directly into the CRM or accounting program.
Coordinated voice/data transfer If a call needs to be transferred from one member of your team to another, this function allows all onscreen customer information (e.g., screen pops) to be transferred when the line is reassigned.
3CLogic and Zoho CRM integration showing the “click-to-dial” function
3CLogic and Zoho CRM integration showing the “click-to-dial” function

 

CTI Benefits

Here are some benefits that explain how CTI can empower call center agents and companies to have more productive customer interactions:

Top Benefits of CTI Software

Top Benefits of CTI Software

 

CTI Implementation Options

CTI can be implemented in one of two ways:

  • As a best-of-breed application
  • As part of a call center suite that has CTI capabilities built in, in addition to other applications (e.g., automatic call distribution or workforce scheduling)

It’s important to note that best-of-breed CTI software is a relatively niche offering. It could be a good option for companies with older phone systems who aren’t ready to buy a new one just yet, but still want to reap the benefits of CTI sooner rather than later.

The vast majority of buyers are better off with the second option: You’ll need an established phone system for calls to be able to work on your computers at all. It’s easier to implement a phone system that supports CTI from the start, rather than trying to retrofit or replace it later on.

Also worth noting: Some of the more basic CTI capabilities (e.g., click-to-dial and even screen pops, in some cases) can be achieved with a PBX system as an alternative to using CTI with a call center system.

Integration Considerations

Once you’ve decided on an implementation model, you can evaluate vendors. As we’ve explained, CTI is intended to be used with computer programs that call centers are already using, such as existing CRM or accounting systems. It’s important to ensure that any CTI vendor on your shortlist can interface with this existing software. You can usually find this information listed on vendors’ websites.

 

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