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June 2009 | Volume 12 / Number 6
Publishers Outlook

EasyRun’s EPPICAcce Aces Contact Centers

One consequence of IP Communications applied to the call center has been the multimedia contact center as exemplified by the EPIC product line of EasyRun (News - Alert) (

I recently spoke with EasyRun’s Vice President of Marketing, Mike Long (News - Alert), and their technical guru, Vice President of Channel Development David Young. They told me about their new product, EPICAcce, a VoIP contact center running in a 2U-high appliance for the small to medium-sized business that supports the control, management, monitoring and support of multimedia blended inbound/outbound corporate communication channels. EasyRun’s EPICAcce is PBX (News - Alert)-agnostic: it runs on virtually any legacy PBX or IP PBX platform. Customers can use the same application across either or both telephony platforms.

Over the years, EasyRun has partnered with large voice solution providers as 3Com (News - Alert), Shortel, and Tadiran, which resold their solutions. “Now, we’re launching our own brand,” says Mike Long, “and are developing our own reseller channel.”

EasyRun’s multimedia contact center solutions can do transparent information retrieval from a business application or external database, and they support email messaging and web interaction capabilities. They’ve also managed to create an intimate integration with Asterisk (News - Alert) open source IP PBX technology. They bundle all of their expertise and functions into one client.

Long and Young say that products such as EPICAcce are perfect for the current economy. A company investing in a contact center no longer has to upgrade or replace their existing Definity, Norstar or Mitel (News - Alert) PBX systems. Consolidating companies can keep their equipment and can even combine their respective contact centers, made possible by EPICAcce’s modular architecture and implementation tools that easily scale and change a contact center’s functionality/structure. Result: no big expenditures for an infrastructure upgrade.

EPICAcce supports SIP Trunking, another money-saver. SIP Trunking has three “legs”: One to the PBX (e.g. Mitel – the contact center integrates via PRIs and analog lines to the PBX), a second to the PSTN and a third to the SIP Trunk provider. The system’s foolproof redundancy yields high availability. (Calls can be transferred to another system within 30 seconds of failure, though calls in the queue will be lost.)

EasyRun’s EPICAcce supplies you with all the advanced contact center functionality to which you’re accustomed, supporting extensive inbound and outbound features (e.g. progressive dialing, predictive dialing, preview dialing and broadcast campaigns), along with email, an ACD, and such advanced chat functions as internal chat with agents and supervisor-to-agent chat. Their real-time monitoring capability is part of their really cool control app. Designed for non-technical users, the customer need not write an interface, since the friendly GUI Visual Script Generator lets you do things such as forward calls after 5 p.m. to voicemail. The seamless backend integration allows for quick installation. (“You can set up a 50-agent system with some database dipping in about 2 weeks,” says Young.)

Contact center supervisors can access such functions as barge-in, silent monitor, real-time recording, whisper, control the ACD, release and resume agents. There’s cradle-to-grave reporting with open and published schema; third-party apps can extract whatever data is needed. EasyRun even has its own smartphone and is creating a softphone. Agents can answer calls and disconnect via Firefox. Though not a full toolbar, you can use the browser to control basic functions like hold, release, resume, retrieve, etc.

An entry-level EPICAcce ranges from $5K to $10K, or $500 per agent. An entry-level EPICAcce Pro starts at about $20K or $1,500 an agent. Adding all options (such as chat) brings the price up to $2,500 an agent. IT

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