A Computer Telephony system can augment the efforts of claims agents by automating the filing process and providing useful information. For example, policyholders can phone in accident claims. They are prompted for the vehicle identification number, the policy number, and the time and date of their accident. They leave a recorded message describing the accident. They can even be provided with the telephone numbers of local repair shops.
Policyholders who wish to know the status of a claim can dial a number to access information automatically. When callers reach the system they are prompted to enter a claim identification number that is used to access a computer record of their account. The status of the claim is played to the caller. If necessary, a recording asks the caller to mail in more information or provides the option of transferring to a live operator.
Insurance premiums may be adjusted periodically. A Computer Telephony system allows independent brokers to call a number and receive the latest quotes.
Companies that produce telecommunications equipment need to test their products to measure quality before they are shipped. Testing a telephone system, for example, requires placing thousands of calls to simulate the kind of traffic encountered in daily use. This procedure can be automated by a Computer Telephony system that generates phone calls without human intervention. A computer monitors the progress of the test and generates reports that are used to verify system performance and identify problems.
Manufacturing can be brought to a halt by the unavailability of a component part such as a computer chip. A Computer Telephony system can be used to maintain and update an inventory of the availability of components. By placing a phone call to a supplier and entering a part number, a production supervisor can determine the number of components available and scheduled delivery dates.
Projects that involve more than one contractor have to be closely scheduled to avoid costly production delays. A Computer Telephony system can help automate the scheduling process. Callers enter a job code and select from a menu that provides information about job status, budget status (including cost overruns), and worker availability. An associated computer system calculates and recalculates critical paths, and the Computer Telephony system provides notification by placing a call and playing a message before impending problems arise. For example, if the electricians are late in completing the wiring on a construction site, the painters and plasters may have to be rescheduled.
Armed forces mechanics must be able to fix a wide variety of vehicles and equipment. They need to keep abreast of the latest technology and to be able to determine the availability of parts.
An automated Computer Telephony system equipped with voice response capability accepts spoken part numbers and provides information on availability. An on-line database of repair manuals is available through a fax server. Once the required product and procedure are identified by the caller, the relevant pages of the manual are faxed.
When a military action is planned, forces must be mobilized quickly. This means that large numbers of people must be contacted and given orders in a short period of time. A Computer Telephony system can be programmed to help place and receive calls. Personnel who are aware of the mobilization order call in, enter their authorization codes, and receive their orders and report date. The system generates calls automatically and plays a recording that informs needed personnel about the mobilization. Unanswered or busy calls are redialed until the intended party is contacted.