Category Archives: News

Rochester Telemessaging Center Receives Gold Call Center Certification for 5th Time

ATSI Recertifies Longstanding Provider on Their 50th Anniversary

The Association of Teleservices International (ATSI) announced that Rochester Telemessaging Center (RTC) has re-qualified for the Gold 24/7 Call Center Certification Award for the fifth consecutive time, originally qualifying in 2008 and operating as the only Gold 24/7 Call Center in Michigan.

Rochester Telemessaging Center was started by current owners Herb and Jan Chinoski in 1972 with continued operations and are celebrating their fiftieth anniversary in business this year.

The certification shows that RTC has met or exceeded high standards in the following areas: business practices, life safety, operations, including normal and emergency procedures, personnel hiring, training, and ongoing evaluations through a peer review program focusing on 99.9 percent annual run time.

“As Michigan’s only ATSI-24/7 Certified Call Center, Rochester Telemessaging Center demonstrates a continuing effort to bring the highest quality to the telephone answering service industry,” said Dan L’Heureux, certification examiner.

“The Telephone Answering Service industry is very competitive and one way we are able to differentiate ourselves is by third party testing,” RTC president Ryan Chinoski said. “We participate in the ATSI programs for site certification, agent certification, and are very proud to be the sole recipient of ATSI telephone answering service Award of Excellence for twenty-six consecutive years.”  

ATSI is an international trade association for the teleservices business. This includes telephone answering services, voicemail services, telemarketing services and any other business that provides enhanced communication services.

Research Shows that Consumers Judge Brands Based on their Customer Service Experience

90% of managers think they treat agents as brand guardians, yet only 33% of consumers agree.

Calabrio, workforce performance company, found a direct correlation between contact centers, brand loyalty, and brand revenue. The global research report, State of the Contact Center 2022: Empowering the Contact Center as a Brand Guardian, uncovered a surprising gap between the role contact center agents play in consumer brand perception and how much employers support and empower those same agents to be brand guardians.

Both consumers (97%) and contact center managers (98%) agree that customer service interactions have an impact on whether consumers stay loyal to a brand. And a vast majority (88%) of contact center managers also agree that brand perception directly affects overall company revenue. When positive customer experience (CX) interactions boost loyalty, revenue follows.

“We know that contact center interactions can make or break a customer relationship, leading to increases or decreases in revenue,” said Tom Goodmanson, president and CEO of Calabrio. “How smoothly those interactions go is a direct result of how agents are trained and how they are supported with the right tools and technology. It’s critical for brand loyalty that agents feel confident to make the right decisions at any given moment. And the most efficient way to improve the customer experience is to empower contact center agents as brand guardians.”

The jump to the cloud revolutionized how agents work and learn, opening opportunities to build stronger customer relationships. To accelerate this, agents now need a more flexible and more autonomous work experience, accessibility to best practices, and digital tools that help them shape the optimal customer journey across all interaction channels.

In short, agents need to be truly empowered as frontline brand guardians to protect revenue streams.

Voice Reigns Supreme

AI-powered chatbots have gained in popularity, but 80% of consumers still rank phone interactions as their preferred customer service channel. Yet contact center managers have a mismatched perception of how important voice channels are to brand image. Managers ranked voice channels third, behind email and web interactions.

This gap may be leading to a misplaced focus on newer channels, such as social media and apps. Instead, consumers overwhelmingly think contact centers should prioritize agent training (70%) and fill staffing gaps (58%), instead of adding more channels like chatbots or virtual assistants.

Loyalty is fleeting. Bad experiences have big impacts, with 60% of consumers saying they switched brands due to a negative contact center experience—most leaving after only two negative experiences. Even a single negative experience significantly damages consumers’ perceptions across future interactions. In fact, consumers with a recent negative experience were less than half as likely to say contact centers were doing a decent job in any category. In other words, recency bias is powerful—and it is hard to recover once consumer confidence is lost.

Other Critical Disconnects

The study shows significant gaps between consumer experience and the service contact center managers think they deliver:

  • Availability of human agents: 80% of managers think they meet or exceed customer expectations for access to live agents. But only 37% of consumers agree.
  • Quick response times: 79% of managers think they meet or exceed customer expectations for response, but only 45% of consumers agree.
  • Needing to feel heard and understood: 84% of managers think they meet or exceed customers’ needs to feel heard and understood by the brand, but only 45% of consumers agree.

“Consumer expectations continue to grow, demanding better and faster results. In the eyes of the consumer, contact centers are not doing enough to empower agents on the channels that have the most impact on brand perception,” says Blake Morgan, Calabrio customer experience futurist. “Managers acknowledge there is work to do, but the question is, how quickly can changes be made to protect both the brand image and revenue?”

Tom Curtin Receives 2022 ATSI Hall of Fame Award

Amtelco


Amtelco announced that Tom Curtin, CEO, was recognized as the 2022 Association of Teleservices International (ATSI) Hall of Fame award recipient. The ATSI Hall of Fame award is given to deserving individuals in appreciation and recognition for their contributions to the industry. ATSI presents the awards at the association’s annual conference to members who show their core values, commitment to peer group success, and the industry.

Tom Curtin, CEO of Amtelco, has worked in the industry since the early 1980s. He has held positions in sales and operations. With the sad passing of his father over twenty years ago, he assumed the helm at Amtelco.

Amtelco CEO Tom Curtin

Under Tom’s stewardship, Amtelco has remained a leader in the development of leading-edge products, set the standard for customer service, opened new markets in healthcare, and always put their customers first. His calm demeanor and quiet personality are much appreciated. Amtelco has consistently been named a top place to work in Madison, Wisconsin.

“We all benefit from the institutional knowledge held by these folks,” said Tifani Leal, ATSI president. “We are so proud for ATSI to recognize a Curtin for the second time and welcome Tom to the ATSI Hall of Fame.”

“I am so humbled by this honor. I vividly recall Mr. C (aka Mr. Curtin) receiving this award in San Diego, California, and how very proud I was to see him receive it,” said Tom Curtin, Amtelco CEO.

“I am truly blessed that he set the stage for Amtelco’s culture ahead of me. This award is humbly accepted on behalf of and due to all Amtelco family members, including employees and our family of customers.”

Amtelco and Telescan

Amtelco has a strong history in the telemessaging industry and was founded in 1976 to provide communication solutions to the answering service and medical messaging industry. The 1Call Division was created in 1997 to help streamline communications for the healthcare call center marketplace. In 2012, Telescan merged with Amtelco.

Together Amtelco, Telescan, and 1Call focus on supplying call center solutions that meet or exceed customer expectations, backed by top notch service and support.

Peter Lyle DeHaan Publishes Healthcare Call Center Book

Latest book, Healthcare Call Center Essentials, released earlier this month on June 6, 2022.

Healthcare Call Center Essentials: Optimize Your Medical Contact Center to Improve Patient Outcomes and Drive Organizational Success

The book Healthcare Call Center Essentials is designed for those who want to manage a more effective medical contact center. From daily operations to long-term success, this essential guide will help readers create a thriving contact center that meets the urgent needs of both patients and the medical community.

In it, you can discover how to better manage your team and support achievable strategies to meet goals and support patients and healthcare centers. By implementing the strategies and tips in Healthcare Call Center Essentials, you can improve your daily systems and perfect your contact center operation.

Peter Lyle DeHaan, Publisher and Editor of Connections Magazine

“Though the focus of this book is healthcare contact centers, the content readily applies to call centers in other industries,” DeHaan said. “This includes both corporate and outsource call centers. It’s a vital resource for every call center leader.”

In addition to writing and publishing magazines and books about the call center industry, DeHaan’s lifetime of experience includes managing a multi-location call center, employment with a call center vendor, and consultant for call centers and telephone answering services.

Healthcare Call Center Essentials is available today in e-book, paperback, and hardcover. Get your copy today.

Quality Contact Solutions named Top 10 Healthcare BPO for 2022

Quality Contact Solutions (QCS) shared that they have been recognized among the Top 10 Healthcare BPO Companies 2022 by Healthcare Business Review.

“We are excited to share that Quality Contact Solutions has been named a Top 10 Healthcare BPO for 2022 by Healthcare Business Review, a trusted source by healthcare leaders for information on managing healthcare business and operations,” said Julie Kramme, vice president of sales for QCS.

“With lower costs and increased efficiencies, business process outsourcing (BPO) is the perfect solution for healthcare organizations,” added Kramme. The QCS team can support the various needs of their clients in the nuanced healthcare industry.

Quality Contact Solutions is an industry leader in call center and telemarketing services solutions, including B2B and B2C programs. QCS offers many telemarketing services, including outsourced sales, upselling, cross-selling, surveys, lead generation, sales lead qualification, appointment setting, inside sales, and inbound customer service. 

Telescan Announces Spectrum Updates and New Features

Amtelco

Telescan, a division of Amtelco, announced the R1-22 software update. This release provides several updates and introduces some all-new features for Spectrum users. Some of the highlights in this release include:

Prism II has a new destination option available in Prism II’s directory. The new destination format is designed to allow transferring an inbound call to another number upon successful entry of a passcode by the caller.

Some telephone answering service (TAS) managers have reported significant charges on their phone bill after an operator connected a caller to 911 for an emergency. In response to this, outbound calls to 911 are now disabled unless an outbound 911 caller ID is defined in the Prism II switch settings.

Prism II now allows inbound and outbound calls to be put in a parked state. To prevent inadvertent parking of calls, Agent II now prompts the operator to confirm that park is the intended state for the call.

Another new option allows the caller’s name (if available) to display in the call queues window at an agent station and in the Prism II inbound call status screen.

Some network environments place special requirements on the configuration of SIP audio. Agent II now has additional configuration settings that allow for it to adapt to certain special network requirements.

“We were excited to introduce this release at the TUNe conference held in April,” stated Brett Minster, Telescan general manager. “Users will find several enhancements made to the Spectrum system applications.”

Amtelco and Telescan

Telescan was founded in 1976 to make TAS businesses more efficient and profitable. In 2012, Telescan merged with Amtelco. Together, Amtelco and Telescan focus on providing call center solutions that meet or exceed customer expectations and are backed by top notch service and support. Millions of telephone calls are processed every day by their systems and software in operation in all fifty of the United States and more than twenty foreign countries.

Amtelco Receives Madison, WI Top Workplaces 2022 Award

Amtelco

Amtelco received a Top Workplaces 2022 honor by The Wisconsin State Journal Top Workplaces. The list is based solely on employee feedback gathered through a third-party survey administered by Energage, LLC. The anonymous survey uniquely measures fifteen culture drivers that are critical to the success of any organization.

“Companies need to authentically represent their brand to job-seekers,” said Eric Rubino, Energage CEO. “The employee experience needs to be on the mission-critical list. Leaders who embrace a people-first culture will benefit greatly. By giving employees a voice and showcasing your authentic culture through employer branding, organizations can attract those job seekers who complement their culture. Culture drives performance.”

Amtelco is known for treating both employees and customers with respect. Matt Heron president and CEO of AnswerFirst, an Amtelco customer, said, “Working with the Amtelco folks has always been a pleasure, and I can’t say enough about you all. I am always impressed at your success in creating a strong culture, lasting relationships, and people-first support.”

Amtelco, a family-owned business located in McFarland, Wisconsin, has been a trusted name in call center systems, software applications, and secure texting technologies for over forty-five years. Every day by Amtelco systems process millions of calls around the world.

Founder Bill Curtin, II, and Amtelco have received more than 30 U.S. Patents for telephony software, data handling methodologies, and telephone switching devices. The company reflects Mr. Curtin’s ingenuity and generous. Amtelco has earned industry praise with its award-winning products and proudly supports local and international charities.

Amtelco and Telescan

Advances in technology is helping the contact center industry to grow and continue to be the hub of information. Amtelco CEO Tom Curtin is proud of the entire Amtelco employee team. He stated, “Thanks our dedicated employees, 2021 ended as the best year we have ever had in our forty-five plus years. Last year we added many new positions to our growing staff and are currently hiring for more positions this year to support our expanding customer base.”

AnswerNet Acquires Quality Contact Solutions


AnswerNet, a full-service provider of inbound, outbound, automated, and global BPO contact center services has acquired Quality Contact Solutions and its subsidiary QCS At Home.

The acquisition was officially finalized on December 31, 2021. As a result, AnswerNet retained all employees of Quality Contact Solutions. Chris Grothe, Quality Contact Solutions’ vice president of operations, was appointed to oversee the company.

Quality Contact Solutions (QCS) specializes in telemarketing call center solutions that achieve sales results for its clients. Their areas of expertise include B2B outbound marketing, B2C outbound marketing, TCPA call center consulting, and outsourced telemarketing quality assurance. Their experience covers a wide variety of industries for clients whose brands are world-renowned.

“We are very excited to welcome the Quality Contact Solutions team to the AnswerNet family,” said Gary Pudles, AnswerNet’s president and CEO. “As one of the most respected providers of call center services in the United States, Quality Contact Solutions offers additional telemarketing, BPO, and compliance expertise and bandwidth that our clients can take advantage of immediately. In addition, the disciplined experience the QCS team adds will benefit all facets of the AnswerNet organization.”

“I am proud of the Quality Contact Solutions team and what we have built in the last 15 years.” added Angela Garfinkel, the former owner of QCS. “With more than 1500 employees and 30 plus call center locations in the U.S., nearshore, and offshore, the combined resources of the AnswerNet companies and Quality Contact Solutions will give the QCS clients access to more services and operational efficiencies in 2022 and beyond,” said Garfinkle.

The Quality Contact Solutions acquisition complements the other brands included in the AnswerNet family of companies, which include business process outsourcing (BPO), telemarketing, education, nonprofit, answering service, appointment setting, and third-party verification.

New miSecureMessages Server Version Release

Amtelco announced the release of new server version 6.8 for their secure messaging app called miSecureMessages. This new server release contains many anticipated new features such as:

  • High Availability Configuration: Allows miSecureMessages configuration for multiple servers, with automated failover from one server to another if the primary server goes down. This feature provides continuous uptime during server upgrades and maintenance and prevents downtime due to a single server failure.
  • Genesis Protected Dialing: Phone calls placed from the miSecureMessages app displays the organization’s phone number instead of the device’s phone number.
  • Shared Device Licenses: Allows device registration for use by multiple miSecureMessages users, enabling organizations to provide their employees with a pool of devices to use at work and keep personal devices off the network.
  • Single Sign-On Identity Provider: Keeps track of passwords and performs authentication.
  • Dark Mode (for iOS): The app will switch to dark mode when used on a device that is set to the “Dark” appearance in the iOS settings. In dark mode, most screens display as white text on a dark background, instead of black text on a light background.

“We are excited to release this highly anticipated version of miSecureMessages,” said Tom Curtin, CEO of Amtelco. “I would like to specifically thank our group of customers who enthusiastically volunteered their time to test the app update to ensure it would meet the needs of all of our customers. Maintaining personal space while communicating with co-workers is critically important during the pandemic. We are proud to play a small part in protecting employees and their customers.” 

HIPAA and HITECH-compliant miSecureMessages is a secure messaging application. The app provides end-to-end encryption that enables staff to securely send and receive texts, photos, audio, and video files. miSecureMessages seamlessly integrates with existing software to improve an organization’s communication time. The app works on mobile phones, smartwatches, tablets, laptops, and desktop computers, and is available for Android™ and Apple® iOS devices. For more information visit miSecureMessages.com.

Amtelco, with a strong history in the telemessaging industry, was founded in 1976 to provide communication solutions to the answering service and medical messaging industry. Amtelco focuses on providing call center solutions that meet or exceed customer expectations and backed by top notch service and support. Millions of telephone calls are processed every day by Amtelco systems and software in operation in all fifty of the United States and more than twenty foreign countries. By working closely with customers, Amtelco continues to develop innovative features and products.

Amtelco Announces Intelligent Series 5.5

Amtelco announced the release of version 5.5 for their Intelligent Series (IS) suite of call center applications. Some of the new features include:

  • Artificial Intelligence: Enhances the caller’s experience by utilizing machine learning to determine the optimal way to route calls based on prior call history. 
  • Genesis Conference Bridge: Conveniently provide concurrent multi-party conferences and expands infinity conference bridge with additional features to increase the control moderators have over conferences.
  • Speech Analytics: Provides a deeper analysis of call logs, including a transcript of the call and describing the overall tone of the caller.
  • Call Tracker Charting: New user-friendly charts and graphs added to IS supervisor reports to track call center performance. 
  • Expiring Licenses (for web agent connections): This feature can add web agent coverage during a holiday season or a special campaign.
  • Spell Check Languages: Intelligent messaging scripts now support Dutch, French, and Spanish spell check dictionaries. 

“The latest version enhancements make call processing easier by speeding up the call process,” stated Tom Curtin, Amtelco president. “They improve the caller experience and help increase accuracy.”

Amtelco logo

Amtelco has a strong history in the telemessaging industry and was founded in 1976 to provide communication solutions to the answering service and medical messaging industry. Amtelco focuses on providing call center solutions that meet or exceed customer expectations, backed by top notch service and support. Millions of telephone calls are processed every day by Amtelco systems and software in operation in all fifty of the United States and more than twenty foreign countries.