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Predictive dialers are outbound call processing systems that are designed to maintain high levels of activity and provide cost efficiency in contact centers. These dialers are capable of calling a list of telephone numbers automatically, screening unnecessary calls such as answering machines and busy signals, and connecting waiting representatives with customers.
This software-based solutions help companies avoid the use of expensive telephony boards and other associated hardware, which have high maintenance costs. Predictive dialers are easy to install and configure, and therefore occupy a significant position in telemarketing, payment collection, service follow-ups, surveys and appointment confirmation.
Predictive callers are programmed to predict when human callers can pick up calls by measuring the number of available agents, lines, average handle time and certain other factors to adjust the outbound calls. They use statistical algorithms to reduce the time that agents spend waiting between conversations, also reducing the occurrence of someone answering when no agents are available. When numbers are dialed there might be two sources of delay, the first of which is that only a fraction of dials are answered such that if one out of four dials are answered, predictive dialers dial four lines every time agents are available. The second delay is that even dials that are answered take time before being picked up.<div style="border-style: none; display: inline; "><p class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: justify; "><o:p>Dialing only one number at a time when agents are available means that agents are being used for 40 minutes per hour. Predictive dialing increases utilization to around 57 minutes per hour. If calls are answered but no agents are available within two seconds of a person’s greetings, Federal Communications Commission (FCC) regulations state that the call is abandoned and requires that the dialer play a recorded message. However, the FCC suggests that predictive dialers abandon less than 3% of answered calls.