COMPTEL: Info Directions Unveils Guided Assignment for Order Entry

Info Directions (Booth 804) announced at COMPTEL PLUS it has included a new Guided Assignment order-entry module in release 9.0 of its CostGuard.NET operations and billing solution, which was generally available in January. The billing and OSS vendor is demonstrating Guided Assignment’s capabilities in its booth at the show this week.

Guided Assignment is a software program that enables CSRs to process routine orders with fewer errors by offering them only appropriate choices based on the services a customer wants to buy and also has access to by virtue of where they are located or what service package they have selected.

“You are making sure the right products are available to the right person,” said James Lazeroff, vice president of marketing for Info Directions. “By the time the order gets provisioned, all the appropriate selections have been made and the order is not wrong.”

Jason Ingalsbe, senior software engineer for Info Directions, explains that Guided Assignment starts out by asking the CSR what services they want to use the order wizard for. Guided Assignment will tackle multiple services at once. The user is prompted, so that he/she does not have to make decisions about compatibility, features and available options. “The software makes sure they make the right decision,” Ingalsbe said.

Ingalsbe noted a key feature of Guided Assignment is that some items, such as a provisioning element, are auto-assigned without the CSR having to think about it.

Guided Assignment also uses “folders” to logically group items to make it simpler for CSRs to evaluate items linked to a particular service. This, he said, offers more flexibility than “packages,” which are assigned to an account as a whole entity. “If you want to swap out part of the package, that can be difficult,” said Ingalsbe. “So, by using a folder instead of a package, Guided Assignment can prompt users to evaluate everything in the folder. It makes the account itself much simpler because you dont have whole package structures out there; they are treated more like individual elements.”

Ordered items can be previewed in a pane on the left side of the screen as the order progresses. Before submitting the order to provisioning, the CSR can review and address errors flagged by Guided Assignment, which validates that the order is correct. “Most errors happen prior to submission, so we try to eliminate them ahead of time,” said Ingalsbe.

Items can be added ad hoc by CSRs with the appropriate permission levels to do so.

“The point of all this is not only to guide the user through making the right decisions, but it can also be used from an upsell and cross-sell standpoint,” said Ingalsbe, noting that there is an optional instructions field that customers can use to prompt CSRs or to provide a script the CSRs can read to the customer. “You can ask questions about purchasing this or that. It helps the user gain additional revenue from the sale.”

Guided Assignment is designed to be configured to match a carrier’s product portfolio by an administrator within the telephone company.

Info Directions Inc.


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