What can Computer Telephony Integration (CTI) do for your business?

Is CTI a catch all solution?


There are many compelling reasons to consider investing in a CTI solution for your business.

Perhaps you wish to improve your customer experience?

Or, perhaps you have read about the potential productivity gains that can be gained by combining your phone system with your Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system.

A recent article on Tenfold explores those potential benefits in more detail but I've been left wondering whether CTI is sometimes positioned as a 'fix all' or 'catch all' solution for businesses.

You can read it here. https://www.tenfold.com/crm/can-crm-integration/

Root Cause

I have come across CTI projects in the past where the promised productivity gains haven't immediately materialised.  This has been of some concern to customers (who just invested a considerable sum in the solution).

What I have found in these occasions is that there is often a root cause issue which the CTI implementation is either being affected by, or has inadvertently exposed.

Here are a couple of examples:

Long Wait Times

After deploying CTI, one customer expected their queue wait times to significantly drop.

When that did not happen, we had to look closer at the types of calls they were receiving and who was best qualified to answer those calls at the company.

After our investigation, we found that the customer had a very small number of employees trained to answer questions on the most common product questions.

Despite the new automated system, this under resourcing of agents created the long queuing scenarios.

Conclusion: Additional resource needed on the most called queues.

'Wrong' menu options

We met with another customer 2 months after their CTI deployment as the project sponsor was concerned that customers were not fully utilising the extensive new automated menu that had been delivered.

Our analysis showed that a significant number of customers were simply selecting option 1 as soon as the menu gave them that prompt. Another significant percentage listed to all of the options and then chose option 1 the majority of the time.

When reviewing the customer's website alongside the new phone menu we observed that the choices given on the phone menu did not match the terminology on the customer's website.

A short discussion with a sample of customers who had recently called gave us a firm indication that the phone menu had too many options and that the options themselves did not match up with the logical sections in use on the website.

In desperation, the customer would simply press 1.

Conclusion: Ensure that phone and website terminology match, and research customer willingness/enthusiasm for self-serve menus.


If you are experiencing teething issues with your CTI implementation, or are not immediately seeing the results you expected, try to take a step back to find the root cause of the problem.

If you are currently designing/implementing a CTI solution, try to consider your existing People, Process, and Technology procedures/limitations and if possible try to anticipate how they will either complement or hinder your deployment.

CTI can deliver huge increases in both productivity and customer satisfaction, but like all change projects there will be the odd bump in the road to navigate through.

If you need any help with your CTI project, please contact us.

Cover image from Pexels.com, artist Pixabay