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New Plantronics Digital Audio Processor Enhances Call Clarity for Contact Centers


Beta Customers Experience Improved Agent Productivity and Job Satisfaction

Santa Cruz, Calif. — Plantronics, Inc. (NYSE: PLT) today continued its 40-year history of developing breakthrough products for the contact center with the new VistaPlus™ AP15 digital audio processor and EncorePro™ wideband headset both designed to improve productivity while increasing customer satisfaction and agent retention.

“Plantronics understands the influence contact center agents have on the customer experience,” said Nick Eisner, director of Contact Center Product Management at Plantronics. “Intelligibility is critical for both customer satisfaction and agent productivity. VistaPlus AP15 and EncorePro improve audio signals to provide clear and accurate conversations, reducing the potential for data entry errors and improving first-call resolution metrics.”

Digital Audio Processors: Superior Call Quality
The Plantronics® VistaPlus AP15 features AudioIQ® technology, a set of digital signal processing algorithms designed to increase intelligibility so callers say things once and once only. In addition, Audio IQ:

• improves poor or degraded audio quality on calls from sources such as mobile and cordless phones,
• helps eliminate echo and filter out background noise,
• automatically adjusts the volume to the user’s preferred level,
• and helps to protect agents from sudden loud noises like fax tones.

“Productivity and intelligibility are even more important for contact center management as self-service technology such as interactive voice response (IVR) becomes more common,” said Drew Kraus, Research Vice President at Gartner. “Calls that do go through to agents in these environments will likely require a higher level of service. Agent clarity, productivity and retention become increasingly critical for a contact center’s performance in this setting.”

Initial tests conducted at a contact center for a financial services firm indicated agents were able to reduce the duration of customer calls, allowing them to serve more customers. After a four week trial, the firm reported a 2% increase in the number of calls handled using VistaPlus AP15 audio processors. Feedback from agents who trialed VistaPlus was also encouraging; agents noted improvements in hearing customers more clearly and in the convenience of AudioIQ’s automatic volume adjustment.

Agent Retention: Improve Productivity and Job Satisfaction
The new Plantronics EncorePro headset provides high-quality voice transmission with its unique, extendable noise-canceling microphone. Precise microphone positioning is crucial to ensure clear outgoing sound quality, so customers hear every word the first time. When used together, EncorePro and VistaPlus AP15 increase intelligibility for both sides of the conversation. Increased clarity can reduce errors and the need to repeat information which improves the experience for both the agent and the customer. Agents who struggle to hear customers and have to repeat things frequently may end up more “drained” toward the end of the day.

Comfort is also an important factor in productivity and retaining quality employees. The EncorePro headset is built with premium, lightweight nylon composite and plush leatherette ear pads which spread over the ears to reduce wearing fatigue. A recent informal Plantronics survey of agents who trialed the EncorePro headset revealed that 60% thought the fit and comfort was improved, 65% felt the transmit sound was better and more than 70% believed the EncorePro is more stylish than their existing headsets.

Pricing and Availability
The Plantronics VistaPlus AP15 is now available for a MSRP of $150. The Plantronics EncorePro corded wideband headset is now available in both monaural and binaural versions for MSRP of $137 and $160 respectively. Both products can be purchased via Plantronics authorized resellers.


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