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"Glossary of Customer Contact Center and Call Center Terms, Abbreviations and Vocabulary"
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Automatic Call Distributor: a system used to reroute, forward or distribute calls to available representatives

Abandoned Call

Also often referred to as Lost Call, an Abandoned Call is a call that the caller disconnects before getting connected to an agent

Activity Codes

Also often referred to as Wrap-up Codes, Activity Codes are used by agents to indicate by entering, the type of caller handled. This code is used by the agents to refer to the caller type


After Call Work: also often reefed to as Wrap-up and Post Call Processing (PCP), this term refers to the work done after a call has been disconnected in an inbound call center. The work could be anything from filling in forms to distributing certain information around the department. During ACW, the agent does not handle any inbound calls

Adherence to Schedule

Also often referred to as Compliance, Adherence to Schedule defines how well an agent stuck to the work schedule planned for certain time span

Advisory Tones

The tones indicating the caller of a situation such as call ringing, busy signals or call-waiting etc


Also often referred to as a Rep, an Agent is an individual who handles inbound or outbound contacting via email, phone or other methods.

Agent Desktop

1. What the agent sees on the computer 2. A feature that allows the monitoring parties to monitor an agent’s working and performance

Agent Group

Also often referred to as Gate, DN, Skills/Queue Group, the terms refers to a group of agents with similar skills

Agent Occupancy

A percentage of time that an agent spends in handling inbound or outbound calls or on wrap-up tasks

Agent Out Call

An outbound call that an agent makes

Agent Status

The current status of an agent in a system i.e. Available, Unavailable, Busy, Off-Phone Work or After Call Work


Agent Handle Time: the total of average after-call work done by an agent and average of talk time taken by an agent for certain span of time


All Trunks Busy: the situation of all trunks in a call group being busy. It may occur due to occupancy of all trunks with calls or blocking of some trunk by system user for understaffing so as to minimize the number of queued calls


Automatic Number Identification: a telephone network function that allows passing on a caller’s phone number directly to the call center. It is delivered by long-distance companies and can also be used for call routing based on the caller’s location


A recorded message often played to callers

Answer Supervision

A signal sent by ACD or any device handling local or long-distance carriers to accept a call. It is used for billing the calling party if long distance charges do apply for that call

Application Based Routing and Reporting

The feature of tracking and routing transactions according to call-type or application through ACD as opposed to traditional routing methods by trunk or agent groups

Area Code Restriction

The capability of telephone systems of not allowing calls to/from certain area codes


Also often referred to as Interactive Voice Response, Voice Response Unit, VRU and Audio Response Unit (ARU), is a system used to communicate with the caller and provide a menu to make selection from


Also often referred to as Average Speed of Answer, Average Daily, Average Time to Answer (ATA), is the time calculated by dividing total delay time by the total time taken to handle all calls


Also often referred to as Audiotex, Touchtone or IVR, it is a system that processes voice to allow callers to choose from a menu of options using touchtone phones

Auto Attendant

Also often referred to as Automated Attendant and previously known as Interactive Voice Response (IVR), is a replacement of human operator and may be used to process a caller’s request to route them to a live agent or play desired response such as company address etc.

Auto Available

A feature of ACD systems that automatically puts an agent’s status as Available once he/she has finished the Talk Time and disconnected the call. If the agent needs to begin with After-Call Work, they need to manually change the status

Automated Greetings

Also often referred to as Auto Greeting, is a greeting recorded by the agent to start playing automatically as a call comes in and can be repeated played on each incoming call. This can give an agent, a little time to get prepared for the call

Auto Wrap-Up

A feature of the ACD technology that automatically puts an agent into the After Call-Work status once he/she has finished the talk time and disconnected the call


Also often referred to as Automatic Calling Unit and written as Autodialler, this term refers to an electronic device that can automatically dial numbers for landline phones, mobile networks or even pager networks. On establishing the call, the autodialler announces verbal messages or send digital messages such as SMS to the called party

Automated Call Back

A telephone system capability that allows a caller to hang up the call and automatically call back through a system programming, as soon as a trunk gets free

Auxiliary Work State

A time when an agent is working but not taking calls. During Auxiliary Work State, an agent could be handling paper work or taking emails etc.

Above Hold Time

A call in an inbound call center of which, the longevity exceeds that of an average call within the same call center

Account Calls

The codes used to bill the clients on calling into a contact center. When the clients first dial into a contact center, they are usually asked to enter the account code


Automated Call Sequencer: is a device that takes up calls and puts them on hold. It also notifies the agent about each call in the sequence

Adherence Monitoring

The method of making a comparison between real-time and forecasts; an important process used to formulate upcoming forecasts


Also often referred to as Available Time, it refers to the time during which an agent is free to take calls or is already busy with an inbound or outbound call

Available State

The position of an agent during which, he/she is signed onto an ACD and is waiting for inbound calls

Average Delay of Delayed Callers

The time spent waiting in queues by the callers who were delayed in being answered. Callers who were answered immediately are not included

Average Delay to Abandon

Also often referred to as Average Time to Abandonment or Average Delay to Abandon, the term denotes average time that a caller spends in queue before being disconnected

Average Holding Time

A value determined by dividing the total length of calls during the busiest hour of the day by the total number of calls

Average Talk Time

The time spent by an agent to communicate with a customer
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