Jordan Telecom plans call centre domination

The JT Contact Centre will offer a range of call centre services, such as telemarketing, telesales and first tier customer support to companies across the region.

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By  Greg Wilson Published  March 4, 2003

Jordan Telecom (JT) is making a bid to dominate the region’s outsourced call centre business. The JT Contact Centre, which is scheduled to open its doors in April, will offer a range of call centre services, such as telemarketing, telesales, web collaboration and first tier customer support to companies across the region.

“We want to be the leaders in [the call centre] business… We will set the tone to bring other investors into Jordan and show them the services we can offer,” predicts Ziad Hamzeh, operational marketing manager, project manager for JT Contact Centre. “This will be a regional call centre. We will have customers coming to set up in Jordan to serve the Middle East, Europe or North America,” he adds.

JT believes it has the assets to win call centre business that has either remained in-house or gone to the Indian subcontinent. The contact centre will have access to a skilled multilingual workforce, a sound IP-enabled infrastructure, strong government support and, most importantly, the region’s lowest international call tariff. “We have the cheapest international calling tariffs in the region, and that is going to help us attract business from large multinationals looking for a regional call centre. We will be able collect calls from certain countries around us, based on the out-going call charge that are cheaper than anywhere else in the region,” explains Hamzeh.

JT Contact Centre intends to target a number of vertical industries with its outsourced call centre services. Topping JT’s hit list will be IT vendors, transportation, banking, travel and tourism companies. Although no customers have yet signed up for its services, JT is already negotiating with regional and international airlines, banks and some other Jordan-based organisations.

JT is predicting rapid growth for its contact centre business unit. According to Hamzeh, the 60-seat call centre will double in capacity in the first 12 months. By that time, the monopoly fixed line operator plans to introduce voice over IP (VoIP) services, enabling the call centre to offer services to businesses in Europe and the US.

“The strategy is strictly regional, until the voice over IP package is ready, which will hopefully happen before the end of this year. Then we will be able to reach the international markets,” says Hamzeh.

JT is undergoing a re-balancing period, during which it will reduce its dependency on high margin international traffic and introduce lower cost VoIP services. When the market fully opens in 2005, VoIP services will be offered to the general public, but before that voice over IP will be offered to call centres to help attract investors to the Kingdom.

“We are a monopoly and a lot of our revenues come from [international call tariffs] so we can’t drop them immediately. We are in a re-balancing mode, whereby we [reduce] the international tariffs gradually. As we do we are going to introduce voice over IP,” comments Hamzeh.

“We will slowly offer voice over IP, but there will be a special offer for call centres which could be offered to encourage investors coming to Jordan,” he adds.

The IP contact centre has been built using an Alcatel’s OmniPcx 4400 R4.2 PABX, Cisco routers and Intel-based rack mounted servers from HP. JT Contact Centre will also use Alcatel’s OminVista 4760 Call Centre Supervision (CCS) to manage its agents and compile reports for its customers.

“We will be able to generate online reporting for our customers on the performance, the quality of the service, and the volume of calls handled,” says Hamzeh.

“We will also be able to integrate with the customers databases with our Contact Centre databases. It is all shared with our customers,” he adds.

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