Can you really make a “predictive” dialer using the 3CX CFD Example?

3CX provides a sample Call Flow Designer (CFD) project that implies you can make a predictive dialer yourself.  But is that really true?  In my opinion, the answer is a resounding “NO” and here is why:

“Predictive” Dialers attempt to “predict” how quickly the dialer can get someone to answer the phone while simultaneously attempting to estimate how soon an agent will be available to take the phone call.  This can be a fairly complicated algorithm based on averages, but the “prediction” is always a “best guess”.

Further, every truly “predictive” dialer uses voicemail detection to decide whether what answered the phone call was a human or something else (voicemail box, IVR, answering machine).  That determination is used to decide wither to transfer the contact to an agent, leave a voicemail, or hang up.  This is not possible in 3CX. 

Given that these features are either not possible or not implemented in the 3CX sample project, calling the 3CX sample project a “predictive” dialer is perhaps a bit of an embelishment.

Creating a fully featured dialer is a huge undertaking that requires years of development.  We have been building our dialer for more than 8 years.  To make a usable dialer, you need the ability to:

  • Easily create, start, pause, and restart campaigns. 
  • Report on the call status:  answered, no-answer, failed
  • Enable agents to disposition the outcome of the call
  • Make different types of calls: appointment reminders (using text to speech), announcements (call, play audio and hang up), get customer feedback (surveys), allow customers to make choices (To agree, press 1, to talk to a specialist, press 2). 
  • Make multiple attempts when a phone does not answer
  • Provide a simple interface to manage all the above. 

None of these features are implemented in the 3CX example project.  Frankly, even if you could create a predictive dialer with the sample project, I’m not convinced it is a good idea in the first place.  We have all experienced dashing to the phone only to discover there is nobody at the other end.  Perhaps if you wait long enough an agent will eventually answer your “hello”.  But this is symptomatic of a predictive dialer getting you to answer the call before an agent is available to take your call. I’ve heard the argument that “I can make a huge number of phone calls using a predictive dialer”.  I suggest the goal is not how many phone calls I can make in an hour, rather, the goal should be how many successful conversation can I have in an hour.  I have always felt upsetting your customer before even starting the conversation is a poor approach to a sales discussion.

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