VoIP is a big business. There are multiple categories of players catering to the wide ranging market. The players include Tier 1 Mobile carriers going down to Tier 3 carrier which cater to more fragmented and smaller market niches.
Tier 1 carriers typically have a network of their own as they are mobile operator in one or more countries. These carriers exchange traffic with tier 1 and tier 2 or 3 carriers. Tier 2 carriers operate in the same way and may ride on the network of the tier 1 carriers with a concept known as peering. The tier 3 carries may totally rely on network of tier 1 and tier 2 carriers
The market for VoIP is huge and can be used by any of the customer types to name a few:
- It can be a carrier to carrier termination ( between tier 1 and tier 1 or tier 1 and tier and so on)
- It can be corporate or SME market
- Retail market
- Call center market
The market making from all the four categories are jointly catered by tier 1 to tier 3 carriers. The routes needed for any particular destination can be from another market player and this concept is VoIP trading between the carriers. To make this trading market more effective, there are few technical steps and technical support needed to make this business work.
Components of Technical Support for VoIP
1.Management of Switch
This is the important part of core technical operations and the technical staff must be competent in handling the switch. A software switch (or softswitch) is the core device in the telecom network that connects calls from one telephone to another across a telecom network or public internet. The technical team must understand functionalities of switches in and out
As explained above that there is a need and big market for carrier-to-carrier termination whereby by each carrier can get access to routes offered by another. Hence interconnection is an important step between carriers. The interconnection has to be managed by live testing and matching of call details records so that there is no issue in billing or call time reconciliation.
3. Testing of Routes
There are multiple types of route such as CLI (caller line identification) or NCLI (non-caller line identification) and within the CLI / NCLI, there are different qualities with varying Average Call Duration (ACD) OR Average Seizure Rate (ASR)
The rates vary based on the type of route and its quality within the type. Hence it is very critical to do a testing of route prior to using. The selection of route will depend on the traffic profile of the final user and the cost expectations.
Testing of routes thus is a very important component of the technical support
Routing is the main function of routing the live traffic on a particular route. The routing may need change based on the quality expectation and /or the rate expectation of the end user. The technical team will thus be required to point the traffic towards the right route based on the needs and commercial aspects
5. Monitoring of Traffic
Monitoring of ongoing traffic is an important part of the technical support. The end customer may route away traffic in case the requirements are not being met and there can many more scenarios for monitoring of the routes
The technical team monitors the following:
- ACD parameters
- ASR paramets
- Junk traffic, to ensure that some junk traffic is not being sent on a good route
- Call center traffic needs different route, so this also needs monitoring
6. Trouble Tickets and Customer ServiceAs the traffic between carriers can be two ways, there will be scenarios where the either side may not be satisfied with the routes. There can be several complaints that can come up during the course of traffic exchange. The technical team is thus required to:
- Provide an interface to receive and send trouble tickets on chats or emails or phones
- Maintain log of inbound and outbound trouble tickets
- Monitor and track trouble tickets
- Ensure resolution of the trouble tickets
The above six aspects are important for a smooth functioning of the technical support for VoIP. At Asiatel Outsourcing we are experts in handling technical support for VoIP operations or VoIP Trading or Wholesale Telecom business, as these terms are often used interchangeably.
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