Thursday, March 24, 2011

Digium Switchvox - Ease of Integration Drives Sales

After a two+ year search for a new phone system, Digium Switchvox emerged as the number one contender for 1st Guard Corporation. I tell my boss [and wife] that everything I do has a selfish undertone, and picking a new phone system doesn’t deviate from that path. The beauty of technology from my perspective is when it is so well integrated that it could almost be considered assimilated.

The first sign of this characteristic with the Switchvox was the URL Manager function. Day one, out of the box we had integration to our existing systems. In 1st Guard’s case that meant that the telephones were instantly talking to the underwriting, accounting and claims business systems. These systems are primarily developed with an ASP.net front end / MS SQL back end.

My borderline narcissistic approach would never allow a new technology that didn’t make my life easier. Digium simply fits in well…easily. Beyond the URL manager and barely 30 days into full production in the 1st Guard Call Center, we dove into exposing the benefits of the SDK/API and wrote our own Auto Dialer that calls customers with account problems and connects them to an IVR. Outstanding!

In support of this environment, and another “ease of integration” trait is Switchvox Developer Central. This support mechanism is key to the integration effort and teamed up with the Asterisk Forums provide a greased skid for the integration to happen.

Digium also brought to the table an integrator that actually added value to the equation. My experience was a Friday afternoon website request for information from Digium, followed by a personalized response email within 3 minutes and a phone call from Tim Halleran at Secure Datacom five minutes later. Shoot – I was on the way home after a long week and all of a sudden we’re talking phone systems. Amazing.

Bottom line for 1st Guard is simple – you make a technology that we can use to help our customers, and keep the integration cost low and you’ve got a winning product. Digium Switchvox fits that requirement.

Dan Ribar