Telemarketing Start-Up Package|
Adrian Miller Direct Marketing (AMDM) has announced the release of a "We Can Do It Ourselves" telemarketing start-up package designed for companies that wish to establish a professional, structured, in-house telemarketing program but do not have the background and expertise to do it themselves. The package includes materials and forms for use in recruiting, script development and program management. A telemarketing skills training manual is included. For an additional fee, AMDM will deliver a customized training session for the TSRs involved in the program. For more information, contact Naomi Tepper at 516-767-9288.
Vacation Home Owner's File
American Data Consultants has announced the release of its 357,368-name Vacation Home Travelers Database. The file identifies individuals who own a second home in a state other than that of their primary residence. Available selections include home market value, income, age, gender, mail order buyer, credit card and marital status. Phone numbers are also available. For more information, contact Chris Wilson at 800-634-2547, ext. 604.
Accounts Payable Software
Armor Systems, Inc. has announced the release of its Advantage Series Accounts Payable module. It is designed to allow users to maintain a complete history of an unlimited number of vendors. It keeps track of recurring charges and lets users pay each vendor several times per month, if necessary. Accounts Payable tracks from/to vendor number ranges on the Check Register and offers an automatic recalculation balance to match an Aging Schedule balance. It allows users to handle multiple accounts, process checks with attached vouchers on an individual basis, and credit or rebate amounts for each account. For more information, contact Theresa Staymates at 407-323-9787, ext. 521.
FTC Compliance For Pre-Authorized Check Payments
AutoScribe Corporation has announced it has enhanced its Auto-Pay Quantum software to ensure complete customer compliance with the new Federal Trade Commission's regulations regarding telemarketing sales. According to the new regulations, a confirmation letter containing seven specific items of information must be sent to the consumer prior to deposit of a pre-authorized check. The Quantum System now incorporates an automatic confirmation facility to address this requirement. The Quantum Edition of Auto-Pay has been modified to incorporate the requirements of the FTC ruling (before depositing a draft of a pre-authorized check, a confirmation letter containing seven specific items of information including the date of the draft, amount of the draft, payor's name, number of draft payments, date of the customer's oral authorization, telephone number for customer inquiry answered during normal business hours, and procedures for obtaining a refund in the event the information is incorrect or was not authorized). Using the Quantum Edition, the letter merges the information directly from the check entry screen. AutoScribe strongly advises all users of pre-authorized checks to obtain a copy of the ruling to determine the extent to which the regulation affects their business practices as the Telemarketing Sales Rule addresses several different telemarketing issues. For more information on the Quantum Edition or how to obtain a free copy of the FTC Telemarketing Sales Rule, contact AutoScribe Corporation at 800-345-7243.
Computer Training Software
Bernstein and Associates have announced the availability of Design-a-course(TM), a fill-in-the-blanks software training system that is designed to allow inexperienced Windows users to teach anything to anybody by creating their own custom-designed Computer Based Training (CBT) program. Design-a-course requires no programming or authoring language skills. The designer inputs the important points to be taught using an intuitive, menu-driven, fill-in-the-blanks session. Text and graphics can be cut and pasted from existing documents. Before completion, the designer can choose between multiple choice and true/false questions. The finished course is reduced to a floppy or to a directory on a network. For more information, call 800-511-5299.
Windows 95 Fax & Voice Development Tools
Brooktrout Technology, Inc. has announced Windows 95 support for its entire line of drivers and application development tools. With Windows 95 support, Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) who have developed applications for Brooktrout's TR114 Series Universal Port or TruFax products with Brooktrout's API under Windows NT, OS/2, UNIX, DOS or other operating systems can now port those applications to Windows 95 without changes to the application function calls. With the Brooktrout CAS Toolkit and drivers, ISV applications developed to the CAS standard API will run on Brooktrout's TR Series and TruFax multichannel fax boards. For more information, contact Heather Magliozzi at 617-449- 4100, ext. 263.
FTC Compliance For Checks-Over-The-Phone Acceptance
Chek4DEBIT(R) has announced the introduction of a new service for telemarketing and direct marketing companies that accept checks over the phone. Chek4DEBIT's Notification Plus will print disclosure notices to consumers for each pre-authorized draft check printed. The service includes verifying and/or correcting addresses to ensure deliverability by the U.S. Postal Service. The service is being offered to coincide with provisions of the Telemarketing Sales Rule, drafted by the Federal Trade Commission, which requires either taped verification or disclosure notices sent to consumers prior to their account being debited. For more information, contact Jeffrey Ray at 800-514-CHEK.
Compatible Systems Corporation has announced the availability of the MicroRouter(TM) 900i, which provides IP routing between a company's Ethernet network and an Internet Service Provider. The MicroRouter 900i can connect via automatic dial-up over a voice, switched 56 or ISDN line, or the user can create a dedicated Internet connection using a leased line. Features include: full IP Routing using PPP transport; Windows and Macintosh management applications; command-line management via Telnet or out-of-band; RS-232 sync/async WAN port connects to modems, CSU/DSUs, or ISDN terminal adapters; support connections at up to 128Kbaud; RS-232C auxiliary port for logging or management; auto- switching Ethernet port - 10BaseT, thin, thick; flash ROM storage for code and configuration; and a three-year warranty, unlimited free technical support and free software updates for the life of the products. For more information, call 800-356-0283.
Multifunctioned Plain Paper Fax
Danka/Omnifax has announced the introduction of the MFP330, which was designed for the small office/home office environment and offers color printing, plain paper faxing, scanning and copying. The unit features 150-sheet paper capacity; 20-sheet automatic document feeder; FAXsynergy PC-Fax software that allows Windows users to send and receive faxes from their PC, view and save incoming faxes, maintain activity logs and phonebooks, etc.; a 14.4 Kbps modem; one MB of memory (upgradeable to two or four MB); six-second per page transmission speed; 64-location autodialing; dual access and more. For more information, call 800-221-8330.
Eight Brand-Spanking-New Lists
Dunhill International List Co., Inc. has announced the release of nine new lists: the 63,349-name Opportunity Seekers, featuring active seekers of money-making activities; the 75,420-name Psychologists and the 16,798-name Psychoanalysts and Psychotherapists, which feature psychology professionals working in hospitals, clinics, counseling services, nonprofit organizations and independent practice; the 627,049-name Marine Radio Licenses, which features prospects for electronic equipment, boating equipment, etc.; the 7,182-name Congressional Staff of Senators, Reps, Senate, Joint & House Committees, which is the latest compilation of the Senate and House Committees and their staffs; the 599,179-name Mathematical Mavens, which features financial specialists in business, education and government; the 26,897-name County Officials, which represents the nation's county officials working in the judicial system, education, law enforcement, public health and safety, etc.; the 18,749-name Condominium Associations in Florida, which features condominium associations in Florida; and the 3,630-name, 2,088-firm Offshore Oil Contractors & Engineers, which features petroleum industry executives. For more information, call 800-223-1882.
Telephone Campaign Software
EIS International, Inc. has announced the availability of Optimizer software, offered through a partnership between EIS and ASPI Software Development Company, LLC. Optimizer, a software enhancement to an EIS call center system, builds detailed databases to record customers' answering patterns and data on whether calls were answered by targeted customers or wrong parties. The software then uses the data to create statistical models that help determine the optimum times of day to attempt a call. Optimzer's Optimal Call Time feature is designed to provide managers with an effective staff scheduling tool by delivering an accurate contact number for time-specific campaigns. For more information, contact Alan Caminiti at 203-351-4800.
Adjustable Keyboard Tray
Ergo Systems Inc. has announced the release of the Ergoactive Keyboard Tray, a complementary product to the Ergoactive Monitor arms. The Ergoactive Keyboard Tray features height and depth adjustability, keyboard tilt and two swivel points. All keyboard adjustments are accomplished through the use of a one- touch mechanism. For more information, call 860-282-9767.
LorTec Power Systems has announced the release of the LE500, its latest single-phase uninterruptible power system (UPS) family, for 600 VA to 6 kVA applications. The system features on-line operation and modular design. Double-conversion technology removes all harmful electrical disturbances. Modules can be hot-swapped, if necessary, without loss of power. The higher-capacity systems consist of three modules: bypass distribution module, battery module and the larger electronics module which contains the rectifier, inverter, battery charger, microprocessor, communications ports, display indicators and user controls. Extra battery modules can be addded, as required, to extend the run time to more than 2.5 hours under fractional load conditions. For more information, contact Lou Welt at 214-205-1524.
Three New Lists
Market Street Lists, Inc. has announced the release of three new lists: the Diners' Club Card Holders, comprised of 320,000 consumers who have a Diner's Club card, which is selectable by such household demographics as estimated household income, age, gender, credit card holders, mail order buyers and more; the American Express Card Holders list, comprised of 2,000,000 consumers who have an American Express card and 150,000,000 consumers who have an American Express Gold card, which is selectable by such household demographics as estimated household income, age, gender, credit card holders, mail order buyers and more; and the Internet Users, comprised of 230,200 consumers who use the Internet, which is selectable by such household demographics as estimated household income, age, gender, by computer type, mail order buyers and more. For more information, contact 603-772-6666.
Call Center Services
MicroAge Inc. has announced it has launched MicroAge Service Solutions, a new service that offers inbound and outbound telephone customer services. MicroAge Service Solutions will offer companies call center management capabilities that include: 24 x 7 availability, single 800-number service, branded or nonbranded calling services, test campaigns and consolidated usage reports. Typical call management applications include technical support, sales support, order taking, product fulfillment, direct mail follow- up, list cleansing, market research and customer database updates. Currently, MicroAge implements large-scale, phone-based technical support programs for leading technology manufacturers on a private- level basis. For more information, contact Jay O'Callaghan at 602-804-7987.
Call Waiting Caller ID Products
Nortel has announced the introduction of its new caller ID call waiting products, the Prevue and Prevue Deluxe call waiting display units and the Maestro 1500 CW and 3500 CW call waiting telephones. With the recent availability of National Caller ID, Nortel's display units and Maestro phones allow consumers to identify their long-distance callers. Both the Prevue units and the Maestro call waiting display telephones feature a call log, which allows users to see who has called, including those calls that were not answered. The Maestro 1500 CW and 3500 CW feature one-button access to services such as voice mail, call return, repeat dial, three-way calling and other popular features offered by phone companies. The Prevue call waiting display unit features a calling line identification display for name and number with call waiting display capability, an extension in use indicator, a multifunction indicator light for new calls or messages, and a 50-name/number call log. For more information, contact Laura Teder at 214-684- 8721.
New Inbound Service Agency
O'Currance has announced it has begun operations as an inbound 800-number live-operator service provider. O'Currance had its beginnings as an in-house reservation center for Morris Airlines, developing a technology that allowed 300 of its 800 representatives to be home-based inbound operators. O'Currance was formed shortly after Morris was acquired by Southwest Airlines, and features a management team with more than 20 years' combined experience in telemarketing and operations management; capacity to handle high-volume print, radio and television response; and live-operator 800 service provided 24 hours per day, 365 days per year. All customer data is handled electronically: credit card transfers are verified through a MOD-10 process; orders for each day are processed and available by electronic BBS download by 7 a.m. MST the following business day; and for broadcast clients, media tracking using the A.C. Nielsen Designated Market Area system is offered. For more information, call 801-974-9811.
Call Center White Paper
Oxford Associates, Inc. has announced the availability of its latest white paper, CEOInsights, entitled "Investing in Call Centers to Build a Low-Cost, High Growth Competitive Advantage." Because rapid changes in marketing technology and customer behavior have positioned call centers as major strategic assets for global corporations, Oxford Associates stresses the importance of utilizing the call center as a competitive advantage. Specifically, the white paper focuses on the nine key benefits as well as the future deployments of call centers. Additionally, the paper details the necessary steps required to transfer the traditional "cost center" into a profit-oriented, world-class strategic call center. For more information, contact Michael Kelleher at 301-907-3800.
Windows-Compatible Help Desk Automation
Professional Help Desk (PHD) has announced the release of Release 3.1 of its PHD(TM) help desk automation software system. Release 3.1 has been tailored to be compatible with Microsoft Windows 95, but it also runs under Microsoft Windows for Workgroups(R) and Microsoft Windows NT. PHD uses Natural Intelligence(TM), a proprietary suite of methodologies and techniques, to create a language- independent knowledge base that keeps learning on its own to provide answers to questions and solutions to problems. PHD runs over Novell Netware(R) LANs and all networks supporting Windows. For more information, contact Frances Tischler at 203-869-4433.
MSP Capability Expansion
Redcom Laboratories, Inc. has announced the introduction of an enhanced version of its programmable switching system, the Modular Switching Peripheral (MSP). For MSP systems equipped with an Expanded Switching Unit (XSU), Redcom has developed several new circuit boards. Additionally, Redcom has introduced an application developers toolkit. The Ethernet Interface Board uses fault-tolerant TCP/IP communications protocol and 10BASE-T format with standard twisted-pair wire. With the E1 Board, the MSP can be equipped with a large number of E1 (2.04 Mbit/s) channels in nonblocking, high- density configuration. Each E1 Board provides 4 independent E1 spans, and up to 16 E1 Boards can be equipped in a system. The High Density DSP Board is designed to allow the MSP to employ large quantities of service circuits without reducing the quantity of traffic-bearing channels. The MSP Host Toolkit is a set of software modules that provides a starting point for developers of telecommunications applications on the MSP. For more information, call 716-924-6510.
Windows Help Desk Product
Remedy Corporation(TM) has announced the release of an all-Windows help desk product. Action Request System(TM) (AR System) for Windows NT brings the scalability and adaptability of its three-tier client/server/server architecture to the PC-server platform. The new AR System Administrator Tool for Windows brings increased customization and implementation of support processes and administration of AR System servers to a broader range of users. The adaptive workflow engine in the AR System is designed to allow users to customize the product, without programming, to meet their organization's business needs. The AR System Administrator Tool for Windows allows users to customize and maintain AR System servers from PCs running Windows 3.1, Windows 95 and Windows NT. This tool will be bundled with the AR System on all platforms, including the newly announced Windows NT version. For more information, contact Mike Lough at 415-254-5370.
Network Management Software
Switchview Inc. has announced the availability of its new Version 5.4 network management software. Version 5.4 supports new features in Northern Telecom's latest Meridian 1 X 11 release 21 software. Within Switchview's Fault Management module, version 5.4 offers Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) support, allowing users to set up the software to forward alarms over a network to other SNMP management stations. Version 5.4 also supports the new Western Telematic Inc. PollCat III buffer box providing a pass-through port for System Administration Access. This provides dual input ports for data collection and PBX administration. For more information, contact Deborah LeBlanc at 214-454- 4315.
Telephone "Doctor"(R) has announced the release of two new versions of its customer service training video "Five Forbidden Phrases(TM)." This program identifies the five phrases that most irritate customers and offers alternatives to these phrases. Version one, "Updated Telephone Version," presents the original message, only improved with higher production values and updated graphics; version 2, "New Face-to- Face Customer Service Version," contains the same ideas as the telephone version but with face-to-face examples and vignettes. Both programs are presented by Nancy Friedman and include a leader's guide, workbooks and support material. For more information, contact Donna Bryan at 314-291-1012.
Media & Direct Marketing Call-Handling System
Telstra has announced the launch of a call-handling system for the media and direct marketing industries that is designed to help customers maximize their market share and audience loyalty as well as meeting industry trends toward increased audience interaction. Telstra Avalanche Service, based on a new series of dedicated phone numbers, allows companies to make a more rapid response to callers entering competitions and events or voting in telepolls at the cost of a local phone call. It consists of two major products, Radio Line and TV Line. Both products have been designed to minimize telephone line congestion that can occur when major phone-in numbers are broadcast or published in the media. For more information, contact Katrina Drewer at 415-922-5452.
Text Message & Directory Information
XTEND Communications Corp. has announced the introduction of ISDN Display Note, a Windows-based system that provides text retrieval and directory look-up at AT&T #5ESS CENTREX ISDN Display Telephones. ISDN Display Note is designed to deliver silent messages of a sensitive or emergency nature through electronic telephone message displays of the AT&T #5ESS CENTREX. When a message is taken at a PC LAN workstation, the system turns on the message waiting lamp at the person's telephone. If the person wants to retrieve the message, he or she dials a special code. That triggers the text message to display on the electronic display of their ISDN Telephone Set. Messages taken at PC LAN workstations for group or individual telephone users of the #5ESS CENTREX are stored until the recipient requests viewing his or her message by dialing the special code. Message security is maintained by the dial-back code. For more information, contact Seth Loonan at 212-951-7672.
Directory Management Tools
CCOM Information Systems has announced the release of PhoneLine Version 5.20, which is available in multilingual versions and features Windows telephone CTI support and an organization tree feature that provides corporate directory hierarchy information. The new version allows users to access directory information about an individual and display a "file-manager-style" view of the corporation's hierarchy. With PhoneLine's TAPI support, users of stand-alone and networked PCs can phone-enable their enterprisewide directories to perform first-party call control functions including dial, transfer, conference and more. PhoneLine can be used to consolidate directory and organizational information from e-mail, fax, human resource and phone system directories. CCOM also announced the release of MasterDirectory(TM), which is designed to bring critical enterprise directory information to desktops throughout the company or organization via data replication and integration with directory services such as Novell's NDS, Banyan's StreetTalk III and other services. For more information, contact Joel Silverman at 908-603-7750, ext. 515.
Multimedia Technology Upgrade
Incite has announced an upgrade of its new, networked multimedia product Converstional Media(TM). The upgrade includes new software and hardware additions that more tightly integrate Incite's technology with private branch exchanges (PBXs) and expand desktop video capabilities. One of the enhancements is an integrated network interface card that enables multimedia telephony capabilities, a suite of desktop video enhancements, Internet integration and an E-1 hum for system deployment outside of the U.S. Other enhancements include: inclusion of audio-only callers into a video conference; voice mail to record the audio portion of a video call; ability to integrate with exiting call centers to provide video call routing for kiosks and video callers; call hold for video calls in which the holding party receives a video message; call waiting for video calls, allowing a single user to handle up to 10 calls from a single desktop computer; and do-not-disturb functions. In conjunction with the PBX integration, upgrades for desktop video include: 15-party videoconferencing capabilities for each desktop, with the host user managing the video stream viewed by other participants; distribution of broadcast TV and videotaped images over ISDN to as many as 16 users per source; Motion Pictures Experts Group (MPEG) video file playback via ISDN from video sources anywhere in the world; and destop bonding or inverse video multiplexing to allow all users access to higher bandwidth calls for video and data collaboration. For more information, contact David Tucker at 214-447-8565.
Digital Business Telephone System
Toshiba America Information Systems, Inc., Telecommunication Systems Division (TAIS, TSD) has announced the availability of Release 3 software for the Strata DK280 digital business telephone system. With Release 3 software, the Strata DK280 supports features including multiple directory numbers (DNs), caller identification/automatic number identification (ANI), dialed number identification service (DNIS), CTI and other features. Multiple DNs allow station directory numbers to appear on multiple telephones, and individual telephones can have multiple appearances of their own station directory numbers. Supporting Microsoft's TAPI specification, users with Strata DK280 Release 3 software and hardware are able to take advantage of a range of CTI PC TAPI-compatible applications, such as using caller ID/ANI capabilities to identify the calling party and displaying the caller's file on the computer screen when the call is answered. For more information, contact JoAnn Tazumi at 714-583-3714.
Gitlitz To Retire From DMA
Jonah Gitlitz has announced his plans to retire as president and CEO of the Direct Marketing Association in January 1997. Gitlitz joined DMA in 1981 as senior vice president, public affairs, responsible for the association's extensive government relations programs and public affairs activities. In 1985, he was named president and CEO of DMA.
Gitlitz's expertise in government affairs has led the association in addressing the industry's critical issues such as third-class postal rates, postal reclassification, postal legislative reform, privacy, use tax, and other public policy issues. His support led to DMA's strategic commitment to become a technical and marketing information resource on environmental issues for the direct marketing community. Under his direction, substantive progress has been made in the effectiveness of industry self-regulation and in building meaningful relationships with consumer and regulatory agencies both here and abroad. Most important, DMA's Mail Preference Service (MPS) became the model for international MPS services that will offer consumers choice globally.
Prior to joining DMA, Gitlitz was executive vice president, American Advertising Federation (AAF) for 12 years. At the AAF, he contributed to the development of the National Advertising Review Board, the self-regulatory arm for national advertising campaigns. Gitlitz helped initiate the AAF College Chapter Program, establishing nearly 125 AAF college and university affiliates across the country. He served also as president of AAF's Advertising Education Foundation.
Prior to AAF, Gitlitz was manager of the Washington Office, Code Authority, National Association of Broadcasters; managing editor of Television Digest; and a reporter for Broadcasting Magazine. Gitlitz serves as chairman of the AAF Inter-Association Council, serves on the board of directors of the AAF, the Advertising Council, the James Webb Young Fund, and is a past board member of the Council of Better Business Bureaus.
Mr. Gitlitz is a friend to the industry who will be missed as a colleague. The staff of Telemarketing(R) & Call Center Solutions(TM) magazine wishes him the best in the coming year and in his retirement.
Reese Brothers Raises Money For MADD
Reese Brothers, Inc. has announced that its 1995 Telemarketing Olympics raised more than $10,000 for Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD). Reese TSRs nationwide competed for five months to earn an invitation to the two-day call-off for charity. Taking part were 23 finalists from 12 different Reese Brothers' offices in Utah, Iowa, Pennsylvania and Canada. All were judged during the contest on call quality and performance. The winner, Linda Tilker of Greensburg, Pennsylvania, raised about $800 for MADD during the two-day event and received a perfect score for her call quality.
Ron Weber Donates Toys To Needy Children
Ron Weber and Associates of Iowa has announced it donated more than $7,000 in toys to hundreds of needy Iowa children during the holiday season. The money was raised through employee donations with matching funds provided by the company. Ron Weber facilities in Davenport, Mason City and Waterloo, Iowa sponsored toy drives for the U.S. Marine Corp.'s "Toys for Tots" program.
The Signature Group Introduces "Do Not Solicit" Service
The Signature Group, a wholly owned subsidiary of Montgomery Ward, has announced it has launched a commercial "do not solicit" service to help marketers comply with federal legislation regulated by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). According to existing laws, corporations must remove names of customers who do not wish to be solicited from their files. It is also required that corporations maintain a "do not solicit" file in order to ensure these customers are not solicited in future marketing efforts. The statute places legal responsibility for compliance on the list owner, and in the future, the FCC is expected to define specific audit and reporting requirements to support this legislation. The Signature Group electronically gathers the "do not solicit" requests from vendors to the list owner, and within 48 hours can retransmit a consolidated list back to them.
Voysys Awarded Patent
Voysys Corporation has announced it has received a U.S. Patent covering two key technologies within its Voysystem voice messaging product for small businesses. The two patented technologies cover methods in the which the Voysystem works with telephone key systems. The first is a self-configuration technique, which automatically handles certain installation functions that normally require intervention by a system administrator. The second is a method for connecting voice mail systems to key systems that do not generate internal touch-tones.
ATD Opens Call Center
American TeleDirect (ATD) has announced it has opened a call center in Houston, Texas. The call center offers the latest in CTI technology to allow for call-blended agent routing of both inbound and outbound calls. ATD currently operates 72 active stations with the capacity to grow to 200 stations. The call stations are operated by licensed insurance agents and nonlicensed representatives. ATD is an operating division of The McClure Group, one of the DIMAC Marketing Companies.
APAC To Open Eight Centers
APAC TeleServices, Inc. has announced it will open eight new call centers and operate more than 750 additional workstations within the first quarter of 1996. The facilities will employ more than 1,000 additional people and will be located in Illinois and Michigan. The new call centers will be part of APAC's Sales Solutions group, which offers direct telephone sales for clients in the financial, insurance and telecommunications industries. With the two new Iowa call centers recently announced by APAC, new workstation expansion within Sales Solutions will exceed 1,150 during the first quarter of 1996.
IRT Opens Facility
Interactive Response Technologies (IRT) has announced the opening of a new, 10,000-square-foot call center. IRT is the creator of the DiverCTI live agent application environment, an advanced visual technology for exclusive use in the teleservices environment. IRT's use of DiverCTI in its call center allows a seamless integration of the telephone, computer and the customer service representative. Its features include instantaneous scripting and campaign building, multiple database connectivity and on- line monitoring to allow IRT's customer service and sales representatives to handle and place customer calls in the best way possible.
MarCom Opens Florida Facility
MarCom Technologies, Inc. has announced the opening of its third fully automated/predictive dialing telemarketing facility. Located in St. Petersburg, Florida, the new facility will provide MarCom with 220 additional workstations for a total of 450 stations and 900 TSRs companywide. MarCom specializes in insurance, mortgage, telecommunications, financial services and credit-card-related outbound telemarketing in both English and Spanish.
NBG Services Expands
NBG Services has announced the move and expansion of its Lincoln, Massachusetts call center to its new Burlington, Massachusetts facility. The new facility will employ more than 120 people - 70 new full- and part-time TSRs will be hired from the Burlington community. NBG Services has more than 600 employees in its existing Andover, Burlington, Wesborough and two Cambridge facilities. The company plans to open its sixth facility in Phoenix, Arizona shortly.
MCI Opens Virtual Music Store Call Center
MCI has announced it has opened a new call center in Chandler, Arizona that serves as the "nerve center" for its 1-800 MUSIC NOW service. The Chandler Center operates 24 hours per day, seven days a week to offer sales and service support on-demand to the millions of customers who have called its music service since it was launched in November. Built and staffed with more than 500 employees in 15 weeks, the 75,000-square-foot call center is equipped with the latest computer and communications technology. Callers to 1-800 MUSIC NOW have the ability to sample and purchase by phone from more than 5,000 CD and cassette titles in 14 music categories.
Teleperformance USA Opens Three Centers
Teleperformance USA, headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah, has announced it has opened new call centers in Clearfield and Provo, Utah and Toronto, Canada. The expansion more than doubles Teleperformance USA's size. All facilities are fully automated and provide both inbound and outbound capabilities.
Mergers & Acquisitions...
A.B. Data Acquires Frontline Campaigns
The A.B. Data Group of Companies has announced it has acquired Frontline Campaigns, the Berkeley, California-based telefundraising firm. The acquisition will allow the A.B. Data Group a West Coast office from which to conduct business. The A.B. Data Group currently operates Integrated Mail Industries, Great Lakes Communications and A.B. Data, Ltd. in its home base of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and maintains A.B. Data Washington in Washing-ton, D.C. and A.B. Boston Communications in Boston, Massachusetts. Frontline Campaigns has generated annual sales of approximately $3 million working on behalf of clients and causes including the National Organization for Women, the Sierra Club Legal Defense Fund, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, AIDS Project Los Angeles, Vietnam Veterans America Foundation and Neighbor to Neighbor. Day-to-day oversight of the West Coast office will be the responsibility of Ellie Cohen, president and CEO of Frontline Campaigns for the past five years, who will join A.B. Data as vice president for sales, marketing and client service.
DiMark Completes Acquisition Of PRO Direct Response
DiMark(R), Inc. has announced it has completed its transaction to acquire PRO Direct Response Corp. PRO Direct Response specializes in the financial services industry. DiMark is an integrated database marketing outsource company that specializes in the insurance, health care, pharmaceutical, telecommunications, and financial services industries.
LINK-VTC Merges With ConferTech
LINK-VTC, a provider of videoconferencing, has announced it has merged with ConferTech Inter- national, Inc., one of the largest multimedia teleconferencing companies in the world. LINK-VTC will continue to operate as a stand-alone entity, working with the Denver-based ConferTech, a wholly owned subsidiary of long-distance carrier Frontier Corp. The merger will allow LINK-VTC to offer hybrid audio- video conferences. Participants will be able to join by either audio or video, based on what's available to them. Additionally, the company plans to co-locate videoconference bridges in several of ConferTech's strategic switch centers around the world.
SITEL To Acquire Canadian Telephone Corp.
SITEL Corporation has announced it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire substantially all of the assets of Canadian Telephone Corporation (CTC), a privately held telemarketing service agency operating telemarketing call centers in four Canadian provinces. CTC had fiscal 1995 revenues of approximately $6.4 million (U.S.) and operates telemarketing call centers in Montreal, Quebec; Calgary, Alberta; and Vancouver, British Columbia. CTC employs approximately 250 TSRs and operates 168 telemarketing workstations in its four service centers. SITEL, based in Omaha, Nebraska, creates, manages and conducts large-scale, telephone-based direct sales and customer service programs on an outsourced basis for large corporations. The company operates more than 2,300 workstations in its 21 telemarketing facilities that enable SITEL to handle more than 13 million telephone calls per month.
Brooktrout Invests In Claflin & Clayton
Brooktrout Technology, Inc., a provider of fax and voice messaging products for telecommunications and networking environments worldwide, has announced it has made an equity investment in Northboro, Massachusetts-based Claflin & Clayton, Inc., developer of NetPhone, a PC-based telephone switch designed for LAN-based CTI applications using Microsoft's TAPI and Novell's TSAPI applications interfaces. The agreement also allows Brooktrout to add NetPhone and other Claflin & Clayton products to its OEM and reseller products lines.
Comdial To Market FastCall
Comdial Corporation has announced it is has established a strategic alliance with Aurora Systems, Inc. The agreement with Aurora Systems authorizes Comdial to market Aurora's FastCall(TM) CTI software. Categorized as "middleware," FastCall is used by call centers and businesses to streamline incoming and outgoing phone calls for improved customer service and productivity. The product will be named "FastCall(TM) for Comdial." FastCall for Comdial will be sold in Novell Netware(TM) LAN environments served by a Comdial DXP(TM) or DXP Plus(TM) digital switch. Comdial was among the first telecommunications manufacturers to ship TSAPI connectivity software. Comdial has approximately 200 dealers who are trained and certified to install Comdial's TSAPI software.
Davox/GeoTel Establish Alliance
Davox Corporation and GeoTel Communications Corporation have announced they have established a strategic business and technical partnership designed to create a total solution for customers with geographically dispersed call centers. The "virtual call center" - a marriage of GeoTel's Intelligent CallRouter (ICR) with Davox's Unison call management system - will enable customers to route incoming calls to the most appropriate call center location and agent (via ICR networking call-routing capabilities) and provide blended outbound calling utilizing the same agents (via Unison Seamless Call and Agent Load Equalization - Unison SCALE - technology). Since the ICR provides call-by-call routing to multiple, geographically dispersed agent groups independent of switch or 800 carrier providers, businesses can use the ICR to provide ACD-like call routing and consolidated management information at the network level to create a virtual, enterprisewide call distribution network.
Dialogic/Alliance Systems Partnership
Dialogic Corporation has announced a new partnership with Alliance Systems, Inc. Dialogic is a manufacturer of standards-based computer-telephony (CT) hardware and software platform components, with more than 1.9 million ports shipped worldwide. Alliance Systems is a leading distributor of computer-telephony technology, distributing products ranging from cables to voice processing systems. The alliance will expand the U.S. distribution of Dialogic's voice, fax and data boards and accompanying software.
Fujitsu Distribution Agreements
Fujitsu Business Communication Systems, the North American business information technology unit of Fujitsu Limited (the global communications, computer and microelectronics provider) and Aurora Systems, Inc. have announced a distribution agreement that allows Fujitsu Business Communication Systems to sell and support Aurora's FastCall(TM) CTI software. FastCall and Fujitsu's F9600(TM) Multimedia Platform PBX both support both Novell's TSAPI and Microsoft's TAPI. According to the agreement, Fujitsu will become a direct distributor of FastCall products in North America. In addition, Fujitsu will provide primary program support as well as a single point of contact for FastCall-based CTI applications. Fujitsu also announced an agreement with SoftTalk, Inc., a provider of CTI solutions. The agreement allows Fujitsu to sell and support SoftTalk's Phonetastic for Novell's TSAPI and Microsoft's TAPI. Fujitsu will become a direct distributor of SoftTalk's Phonetastic software products in North America. In addition, Fujitsu will provide primary program support as well as a single point of contact for Phonetastic-based CTI applications.
Periphonics Partnership Program
Periphonics Corporation has announced it has developed a Partnership Program to foster the integration of the company's IVR technology with the product offerings of value-added resellers (VARs) and industry-specific application solution providers. The Partnership Program has three tiers, determined by level of involvement with Periphonics' products. A VAR Partner will integrate the Periphonics VPS/is system into their current offering (hardware, software and/or services). On the second level, Marketing Alliance Program, participating companies will develop the application software with Perphonics graphical user interface tools to integrate the software and IVR equipment with other systems. On the third level, companies that form a Marketing Alliance with Periphonics will benefit from increased product exposure in the marketplace.
Pipkins Nortel Affiliate
Pipkins, Inc. has announced it has been designated as a Northern Telecom (Nortel) Business Affiliate, which will provide extensive marketing support for Pipkins products on Nortel systems. Pipkins products initially offered through the program are the Merlang(TM) Call Center Consultant, which is staffing and trunking analysis for incoming call centers, and Call Center Maxima(TM), which provides call volume forecasting, Merlang analysis, agent skill set scheduling, and the monitoring, measuring and control of multisite call centers. A third product, Maxima Advantage(TM) (a greatly expanded, reengineered new generation of Call Center Maxima), will be added to the Business Affiliate Program in March.
Southwestern Bell Telephone Company and Algo Communications Corporation, a Dallas-based CTI software company, have announced they have signed a contract to develop and produce a CTI product to be marketed by Southwestern Bell. The software will essentially allow users to graphically recreate their telephone on a computer screen, integrating, with the click of a mouse, CTI software with popular optional phone functions, such as call waiting, call forwarding, three-way calling, caller ID and CallNotes. It will be comprised of a customized version of PhoneKITS(TM), Algo Communications' CTI software suite, and dialer hardware manufactured by Comdial Corporation.
Contracts and Installations...
New Client For AMDM
Adrian Miller Direct Marketing (AMDM) has announced it has signed a contract with Merola Sales Company, a distributor of ceramic tile, tools and adhesive. AMDM will start-up and develop an inside sales department for Merola Sales. Cadmus Communications Named Coldwell Banker Supplier Cadmus Communications Cor-poration has announced that its Cadmus Marketing Services division has been named by Coldwell Banker Corporation as its Approved Supplier. The contract covers printing- related services. Under the new contract, Cadmus Marketing Services will utilize the wide array of Cadmus products and services to bring innovative solutions to meet the diverse graphic communication needs of Coldwell Banker. Cadmus Communications is a graphic communications company offering specialized products and services in the areas of printing, marketing and publishing.
Vacuum Contract For Chek4Debit
Chek4Debit(R) has announced that Royal Appliance Manufacturing Company, makers of Dirt Devil(R) and other floor-cleaning appliances, has selected Chek4Debit to process check-over-the-phone orders. Royal has implemented the payment option in conjunction with its infomercial promoting the Broom Vac.
HP Purchases Clarify System
Clarify Inc. has announced that Hewlett-Packard Company has purchased the Clarify system for one of the world's largest client/server support environments. The multimillion-dollar deal spans HP's Worldwide Customer Support Organization (WCSO) as well as the company's consolidated internal help desk, the Atlanta-based Call Center. The WCSO plans to use Clarify's workflow-based replication technology that enables replication of customer service data on multiple distributed servers to support HP's multinational customer base at both the local and global level. When the first phase of the implementation is complete this year, Clarify will be used by 1,000 support professionals simultaneously across 35 global service centers to manage a call volume of more than 100,000 calls per month. HP's Atlanta-based Call Center will use Clarify's ClearSupport(R) software to support its seven groups of help desks, each with an emphasis on a specific field. The Call Center will also use ClearExpress WebSupport(TM), a new Clarify product that links a company's internal Web site to its help desk environment to enable employees to open cases, check status and troubleshoot for their own solutions.
Telescript Software Compatible With More Switches
Digisoft Computers, Inc. has announced its Telescript TSAPI software is now in use with two more phone switches. Customers are successfully linking Telescript to their Siemens ROLM and Comdial switches. Telescript uses the Novell TSAPI Telephony Services for Netware, the standard that enables application programs such as Telescript to link to phone switches manufactured by different vendors. This permits Telescript software to perform CTI links directly through phone switches that link to this standard. Companies announcing TSAPI-compatible phone switches include Alcatel, AT&T, BBS Telecom, Fujitsu, Mitel, NEC, Northern Telecom, Officia, Phillips Kommunikations, SRX and Tadiran.
Information Management Associates, Inc. (IMA) has announced that Quality Telemarketing, an Omaha, Nebraska service agency, has selected the EDGE TeleBusiness(R) Software System to automate their call center operation. Quality will provide automation for 50 agents in the first phase of the EDGE rollout. IMA also announced that BOSE Corporation has selected EDGE to automate its telesales center in Marlborough, Massachusetts. BOSE, a manufacturer of stereo equipment, will use EDGE to process inbound customer calls and respond to product inquiries. Outbound agents will use EDGE to make follow- up calls to prospects who have been sent information about BOSE products, but have yet to place an order, make customer courtesy calls to customers, process orders and identify upsell and cross-sell opportunities.
U. Of Chicago Installs Intecom PBX
Intecom has announced that the University of Chicago has installed an "Enterprise" or "E" private branch exchange (PBX) system at its Hyde Park campus. Intecom will work with the University's telecommunications staff to install this switching technology platform. The new PBX will be integrated to work with the University's two existing Intecom S/80 PBXs to look, function and feel like one large 20,000+ PBX system to its University and hospital users. The contract also calls for the introduction of new telecommunications technologies such as CallWise, IQ Admin and Incite.
InterVoice Receives Order For InterDial Systems
InterVoice, Inc. has announced it has received an order valued at approximately $850,000 from one of the nation's largest telecommunications equipment and service companies. The order is for four InterDial predictive dialing systems. The 464 agent positions in this installation will be used by the customer in a telemarketing application to launch and complete large-scale telemarketing campaigns.
Periphonics Corporation has announced that Entergy, a company with 2.3 million electric and 240,000 gas customers spread across Arkansas, Louisana, Mississippi and Southeast Texas, is using Periphonics voice response products for its subsidiaries spread across those four states. Entergy is divided into six regions, and a phone center in each region now handles most of the tasks by telephone that local offices used to deal with through customer walk-in visits and calls. Each of the six phone centers is equipped with a Periphonics VPS/sp 9000 system providing service for 72 lines. Applications that are currently available include power outage reporting, current outstanding balance information, latest payment information and bill payment extension.
Signature Group Receives Airline Contract
The Signature Group, a wholly owned subsidiary of Montgomery Ward & Company, has announced it has signed a contract with United Airlines to offer a proprietary dining program to United's Premier, Premier Executive and 1K frequent flyers. The program is the only airline dining program that awards 10 miles for each dollar spent at participating restaurants.
Integrated telecommunications products provider SRX has named Gerald A. Shanholt president and CEO.
Roel Pieper has been named president and CEO of technology solution provider Tandem Computers Incorporated. Tandem also announced the appointment of Chris Brennan as president and COO at its wholly owned subsidiary, UB Networks.
Multinational marketing, management and information research services firm ICT Group, Inc. has announced the following appointments: John L. "Jack" Magee as president of its ICT TeleServices division; Annette M. Irwin as senior vice president of sales for its ICT Direct division; Alix E. Ginsburg as vice president of sales and business development for its ICT Response division; Michael M. Hallowell as sales associate for ICT Response; and Mark S. McConkey as director of sales for ICT Response.
Bruce Dulberg has been name corporate vice president of GETKO Group, Inc. and vice president of The Marketing Information Bureau, a division of GETKO. GETKO Group is a provider of publishing/information services designed for companies marketing to the new homeowner sector in the U.S. and Canada.
Nationwide direct marketing and media company owner Harte-Hanks Communications, Inc. has announced the promotion of Richard M. Hochhauser to executive vice president. In addition, he will continue as president and CEO of Harte-Hanks Direct Marketing, the company's direct marketing business.
Telemarketing service agency MATRIXX Marketing, Inc. has announced that after the merger of its inbound central and mountain divisions into a single division headed by Thomas J. McShane, Thomas L. Hargreaves will be president of the outbound division. George F. Vogel, was appointed group vice president of resource unit services and Michael W. Callaghan was appointed vice president of corporate development, strategy and marketing. Also promoted were: Karen R. Bowman, to vice president of legal and administration; George J. Rewick, to vice president of corporate technology; and Edwin J. Eynon to vice president of corporate human resources. Additionally, Garth A. Howard was appointed to the position of president of the direct broadcast satellite division, reporting to Ronald E. Schultz, the recently appointed senior vice president and COO of U.S. operations.
Direct marketing services provider Neodata Services, Inc. has announced the appointment of Ed Frazier as senior vice president and CIO.
Sitel Corporation, a telemarketing service agency, has announced the following appointments: Mike Nemer as director of new business development of the Financial Services Group; Pete Katsampes as vice president of sales of the Marketing Services Group; Vince Haman as general manager of the Marketing Services Group; and Cathy Hietbrink as general manager of the Marketing Services Group.
Robert A. Kobek has been appointed as executive vice president, strategic planning and development at TeleServices Direct, a telemarketing service agency and division of Career Horizons, Inc.
Mark Smedley has been named as vice president of business development at Telecom Ireland (US) Ltd., the U.S. division of the state-owned Irish telecommunications authority.
Unibase Direct, Inc., an integrated provider of global telemarketing, data entry/scanning and imaging, and database marketing services, has announced the promotion of Russell Thomas to director, sales of Unibase Direct and its data processing affiliate Data Services Direct.
James R. Scott has been appointed national sales manager of AAC Corporation's Account-A- Call Division. AAC Corp. is a provider of telemanagement, data management and call center management solutions.
Bear Creek Technologies, a provider of information technology and software to the telecommunications and power utilities fields, has announced the appointment of Joseph P. Wortmann as software developer.