One of the things we get asked for a lot at Packnet is, do you have an API so we can integrate our back office systems?
Generally this then leads to us asking some questions about what the customer is trying to achieve, followed by us stating what we could do and then a customer saying yes we like that, and then mostly silence. We wondered why this was happening. It seemed that from the client side the initial encouragement was tempered with a realisation that to integrate systems (Telephony & CRM, Telephony & HelpDesk) there is no magic wand and it will require resource and some development, which on the whole it does.
The question of systems integration is one that we have also had to address ourselves within Packnet. We use several of the common cloud based applications and as time has gone on, we have endeavoured to integrate these systems together to share information and generally try to make our lives easier and workday more efficient. To name a few of the key ones that deal with the key sectors of Sales, Documents, Customer Contact and Customer Service, we at Packnet use Capsule CRM, Google business apps, MailChimp and Request Tracker.
RT or Request Tracker is the big customer facing system and is our handler of inbound/outbound emails to and from customers. We are currently reviewing migrating our help-desk ticket software away from RT to another system and one of the key drivers for this is the new system’s ability to link both into other existing systems and the ease at which it can link into our telephony platform. In short, does it have an effective API? If it doesn’t, then it’s rejected out of hand.
Capsule CRM is a hosted CRM for keeping track of your clients and prospects online. Add tasks, track communication logs, and close deals in your pipeline faster with Capsule CRM.
MailChimp is an email marketing service provider, founded in 2001. It has 6 million users that collectively send over 10 billion emails through the service each month.
This task is becoming easier with the advent of platforms like Zapier, that allow for easy integration between different applications. If you haven’t had a look at it, or even heard of it then we’d recommend giving it the once over next time you have a spare few minutes.
With this in mind, one of our primary aims is to make the process of integrating with the Metis platform a more streamlined and easy process and have a documented suite of API functionalities that are available to all customers.
To that end, we’d like to ask you, the customers for some feedback on the list of functionalities and information that we are proposing can be gathered via this API suite. We would also like to hear about the system you and your customers use, so we can start to focus efforts on the more popular applications that are out there.
As to the functions we are looking at initially to make available via API, here is a flavour of what has been thought about on our side of the fence.
- API – Call Information – inbound/outbound call data record information
- API – In Progress call volume – Calls In, Calls Out, Calls Out UK, Calls Out International
- API – Daily Call Breakdown by Extension – Calls in Breakdown, Calls Out Breakdown
- API – Daily Call Totals – Calls In, Calls In Missed, Calls in Unanswered, Calls Out
- API – Queue Status – Members, Calls Now, Calls Taken, Strategy, SLA
- API – Extension Status – Reachable, Unreachable, Unknown
- API – Invoice information – Retrieves a list of Invoices for a given month. INV No, Amount, Sub Total, VAT, Payment Date, Created Date
- API – Call Recording Details – Call Recorded, Call Filename, Retention Period, Created Date
- API – Numbers – List your number information
- API – Broadband Orders – List all Orders and Status
- API – WLR3 Orders – List all Orders and Status
- API – Product Catalogue – List your Catalogue Items and Pricing Information
At this stage we recognise that the above list is limited to more informational based data and not necessarily call making and management. That’s intentional, and once we have the above done with the associated integrations tasks we would look to move onto more ‘telephony-call routing’ based options.