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Bringing Modern Customer Experience to Higher Education: The University of Central Florida’s Microsoft Teams Contact Center Journey

Microsoft Teams | Microsoft | Unified Communications | Contact Centers | Success Stories

2 minute read

Bringing Modern Customer Experience to Higher Education: The University of Central Florida’s Microsoft Teams Contact Center Journey

Effective customer service experience is crucial for any university, and the University of Central Florida (UCF) faced challenges in this area due to system downtime and support issues. To address this, UCF partnered with Microsoft and AudioCodes to transition to cloud-based solutions, specifically Microsoft Teams for collaboration and communication. This led to the adoption of AudioCodes’ Voca Conversational Interaction Center (CIC), a Microsoft Teams contact center built in Azure, bringing modern CX and Conversational AI to the UCF service desks.

The Customer

UCF, the second-largest university in the United States, serves a student population of 70,000 and a Microsoft Teams user base of 200,000. Spanning multiple campuses and resembling a mini-city, UCF operates 40 contact centers spread across departments like the police station, university hospital and athletics department. With a dedicated team of 400 contact center agents, UCF communication and support services are crucial to ensuring smooth operations and delivering top-notch services to its students, faculty, and staff.

The Challenge

UCF’s previous communication infrastructure lacked redundancy, leading to frequent system downtime. Despite adopting Microsoft Teams, they struggled to find a reliable contact center solution that could scale seamlessly across departments, minimize the hours and months spent planning and deploying new contact centers, and provide stable performance. With 800,000 inbound calls a year and growing 15% annually, UCF needed a flexible solution to handle their increasing communication needs.

The Solution

Enter AudioCodes, a trusted partner in UCF’s goal for delivering reliable customer experience. Recognizing the importance of trust and reliability, UCF chose AudioCodes Voca Conversational Interactions Center (CIC) for its reliability and integration with Teams. It offered built-in conversational AI, quick deployment, easy scalability and CRM integration with ServiceNow.

UCF purchased Voca CIC through the Azure Marketplace. UCF CTO, Mike Scruggs, said, “As an institution, we thought the shift to the cloud would bring us more reliability. I didn’t know at the time that we would be one of the first higher education institutions to go in this direction, but I’m proud and I think we have an opportunity for us to expand by using simplified billing practices through Azure and influence some of our other partners and Florida schools that this is viable, it’s easy and it does give you benefits.”

Key Objectives

UCF’s criteria for a contact center solution included easy implementation, flexibility to spin up new contact centers quickly, a stable solution with geo-redundancy, simple user interface requiring little onboard training and affordability. Voca CIC met these requirements, allowing UCF to manage their contact center operations independently.

The Results

With Voca CIC, UCF was able to swiftly onboard new tenants and set up 40 contact center desks to support various university services. The implementation improved productivity and service delivery, strengthening UCF’s ability to meet the communication needs of its community.

As part of their implementation of Voca CIC, UCF leveraged conversational AI to automate the natural language call steering process for callers. This innovative technology allows callers to interact with the system using natural language, enabling them to express their needs and preferences in a conversational manner.

By utilizing conversational AI, UCF streamlined the call routing process, allowing callers to be directed to the appropriate department or agent quickly. This not only enhances the caller experience by reducing wait times and improving call resolution times, but also frees up valuable resources within the contact center, allowing agents to focus on more complex inquiries and tasks.

I’m finding that Voca CIC is actually more accepted than other products in the past because of how easy it is to use. On top of that comes the reliability - it has been such a stable product that we haven’t had any downtime.”

Keith Honaker, Lead UC and Head Architect of Contact Centers at UCF

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