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Ericsson phone queuing system
automatic phone-call distribution system

If you want good relations with your customers, you should be prompt and courteous when they ring.

But that's not always easy when business is huge. For example, the Royal Hong Kong Jockey Club gets up to 500 000 calls a day!

Since 1978, Ericsson Australia has produced a range of automatic call distribution systems. The company has sold over 400 systems in 25 countries. The ACP1000 can queue large numbers of calls and direct them to the first available operator. It can give priority to certain incoming calls (overseas calls, for example). And it helps manage the workloads of both the system and the operators.

When just a few people are trying to get through, the next call in the queue goes to the operator who has been waiting the longest, but when traffic is heavy, the next call goes to the next available operator.

You don't always need an operator, either: the system allows callers to listen to pre-recorded messages and key numbers into their phones to pay bills or place orders. It really has changed the way customers interact with businesses. It?s also turned customer service in call centres into an industry - and a career.

Who Did It?
Key Organisations
Ericsson Australia Pty Ltd : R&D, design, manufacture
Key People
Chris Sheahan : product manager

Further Reading
'Ericsson local expert has global challenge'
Unnamed author
The Australian, 9 October 1990, p 47.

Ericsson Australia
The Switching Place: the story of telephone exchanges

The computer-based ACP automatically distributes incoming phone calls. Courtesy Ericsson Australia.
ATSE Powerhouse Museum