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KCOM Completes World’s First Trial of Nortel Contact Center 7.0 Integrated with Microsoft Office Communications Server


Successful Trial Shows Improved Customer Service and Reduced Call Rates

LONDON – KCOM, a leading UK supplier of business communication solutions, has completed a live trial of Nortel’s* [TSX: NT, OTC: NRTLQ] Contact Center 7.0 (CC7) demonstrating successful integration with Microsoft’s Office Communications Server. The trial, the world’s first to test the compatibility of the two solutions, showed the two products can significantly improve service and efficiency for contact centres .

KCOM conducted the trial using its IT service desk, with staff operating out of Hull and Reading in the UK . Nortel’s C ontact C enter 7 .0 , integrated with Microsoft Office Communications Server, was deployed to assist agents in handling high call volumes and to improve customer service by allowing callers to use their preferred method of communication to register queries.

KCOM’s service desk handles approximately 6000 calls a month from both internal and external clients. Following deployment of the C ontact C enter 7 .0 and OCS solution, service desk agents saw a 30% decrease in the number of phone calls that were logged as users opted to submit queries by instant message (IM) or email instead.

“One of the most satisfactory results of the trial was that our users really noticed a change in service,” said Paul Marsden, workplace services manager, KCOM. “They particularly liked the ability to submit queries via instant message as it allowed them to continue working rather than waiting in a queue for the call to be answered. Also, given the choice, the agents themselves didn’t want to go back to the old technology; they felt the C ontact C enter 7 .0 and Office Communications Server solution was more intuitive and user friendly.”

Offering users the option to submit their enquiry via their preferred method of communication also showed benefits for the service desk agents. Nortel C ontact C enter 7 .0 allows agents to prioriti s e enquiries, and in this instance, voice calls were prioriti s ed over IM, and IM was prioriti s ed over email. This allowed urgent calls to be handled immediately, while less urgent calls were handled as agents became available. The agents also found they were able to process enquiries at a faster rate when they were submitted by instant message as they could get more background information from users.

The Contact Center 7.0 solution used by KCOM also included Nortel’s ‘Expert Anywhere’ capability, allowing agents to see the availability of other experts in the contact centre. Through access to ‘presence’ information, the agents were better able to ensure the calls they routed would be answered and resolved on first contact.

“Our agents instantly recogni s ed the benefit of seeing the availability of subject matter experts within their new integrated desktop.” said Marsden. “The solution allowed the agents to identify the people within the business that could help them resolve enquiries which they couldn’t answer themselves, without the need to call back. On the whole, the transition to the new technology was incredibly smooth, with no need for additional staff or significant overtime. The agents embraced the solution and found they were more productive when using it. During the trial the solution was confined to staff working in two locations, but I now have every confidence in the solution and am looking to deploy it to staff in our other locations.”

“In the current economic climate, organi s ations are looking to increase productivity while driving down costs,” said Mario DiMascio, vice president, Enterprise Sales, Northern Europe , Nortel. “Delays in dealing with enquiries and call-backs are costly to any business and are normally associated with contact centre agents not having access to the right information or the right people at the right time. This trial shows that the problem can be solved by combining the power of Nortel’s Contact Center suite with the Presence and Instant Messaging capabilities of the Microsoft Office Communications Server platform.”

Nortel and Microsoft Corp. have a long-standing relationship through the Innovative Communications Alliance, from which businesses are now realising the benefits. Contact Centre 7.0 is the latest in Nortel’s contact center portfolio and draws on industry expertise to provide the very latest in customer contact technology. Nortel’s Contact Center 7.0 achieved ‘ Generally Available ’ status on 23 rd of June 2009.

Nortel’s Contact Centre 7.0 was recently honoured with industry accolades with the IP Contact Center Technology Pioneer Award by Technology Marketing Corporation and Customer Interaction Solutions Magazine. Awarded to the “best of the best,” Nortel’s Contact Centre 7.0 was recognised for its ground-breaking, stand-out capabilities in the advancement of call centre technologies.

For more information about Nortel’s Contact Center portfolio visit Nortel’s solutions microsite .

For more information about the Nortel and Microsoft Innovative Communications Alliance visit the dedicated microsite .

About KCOM
The KCOM Group utilises its expertise in local and wide area networks, hosting and communications technology, to design, deliver and manage end to end network based solutions. These solutions are primarily targeted at enterprises and Public Sector markets and satisfy a growing need for colleagues and customers to communicate and collaborate more effectively, as IP networks and desktops converge.

The Group’s credentials and capabilities as a trusted expert in this field have grown out of the Company’s heritage in East Yorkshire , where it has provided telecommunication services to businesses and consumers for over 100 years.The KCOM Group is listed on the London Stock Exchange.

About Nortel (in Administration)
Nortel is a recognized leader in delivering communications capabilities that make the promise of Business Made Simple a reality for our customers. Our next-generation technologies, for both service provider and enterprise networks, support multimedia and business-critical applications. Nortel’s technologies are designed to help eliminate today’s barriers to efficiency, speed and performance by simplifying networks and connecting people to the information they need, when they need it. Nortel does business in more than 150 countries around the world. For more information, visit Nortel on the Web at . For the latest Nortel news, visit .

Certain statements in this press release may contain words such as “could”, “expects”, “may”, “anticipates”, “believes”, “intends”, “estimates”, ”targets”, “envisions”, “seeks” and other similar language and are considered forward-looking statements or information under applicable securities legislation. These statements are based on Nortel’s current expectations, estimates, forecasts and projections about the operating environment, economies and markets in which Nortel operates. These statements are subject to important assumptions, risks and uncertainties, which are difficult to predict and the actual outcome may be materially different from those contemplated in forward-looking statements. For additional information with respect to certain of these and other factors, see Nortel’s Annual Report on Form10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and other securities filings with the SEC. Unless otherwise required by applicable securities laws, Nortel disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

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