If you’ve been following our team’s weekly update posts and emails, you’ve noticed that we’ve made a few notable upgrades to our softphone since rolling out the new version in 2018. While our platform boasts a ton of powerful features, the softphone has always been our foundation. The softphone is what enables our users to place calls and send texts from anywhere in the world, using just about any device, as long as they have an internet connection. Our development team is constantly enhancing the features and interface in order to ensure our users have the best experience, including our CEO and co-founder Todd Fisher, who also serves as the lead developer.
We sat down with Todd to learn more about what’s new with the softphone and why, if you’re still using the legacy version, it’s time to make the switch!
Todd, tell us about the journey of the CTM softphone and what inspired you to upgrade the legacy version.
It’s natural to imagine the ways that something can be improved when you’re using it on a daily basis. Our team uses CallTrackingMetrics to perform our jobs, just like our clients do. It was within that context that we first envisioned additional capabilities for the softphone, and more efficient ways for us and our users to perform routine actions.
We started developing a version of the new softphone back in January 2018—which feels like a very long time ago considering how quickly our software evolves. After a few months of fine-tuning, we released it to customers in April of last year. Since then, we’ve continued to iterate and add enhancements.
What were the key updates you made to the softphone?
Our first priority was to make it easier to interact with the softphone. We wanted to bring our more robust features like Agent Scripts and Call Queues directly into the softphone interface, without complicating the user’s experience.
We also realized we needed to adjust the design and layout to incorporate the new features we were adding. Many of our customers access CTM on their mobile phones using our official app, so any changes we made to the desktop softphone needed to be mapped over to the app as well to deliver a seamless, unified experience across any device.
The new softphone actually went through a ton of iterations as we tested out each version with our team. For example, at one point, we had stacked buttons at the bottom of the softphone. It worked well inside the desktop version of our platform, but became a real struggle when we tried it out on our mobile phones using one hand.
How has the softphone functionality been enhanced?
When we launched the new softphone, we not only upgraded the design, but added new capabilities. And although the new softphone was released last spring, we continue to make improvements and add new features based on client feedback. I think most key is that you can simply do more things inside the softphone, without having to navigate to other parts of the app.
A few notable features we’ve added recently include:
- The ability to easily choose between calling or texting a number when that number is selected in the softphone interface.
- Quickly stop or start a call recording inside of the softphone if you need to take sensitive information over the phone. While we do have redaction tools available in case you realize you need to remove that information later on, this would allow you to simply never record in the first place—without ever leaving your softphone during the call.
- Allow your agents to easily log in or out of a call queue in order to take different types of phone calls when necessary. Previously they’d need an administrator to switch them from one queue to another. Now, if the support lines are struggling with a heavy call load, sales agents could easily add themselves into the support queue to help them handle calls. I think this is a really cool feature, and it’s actually only available inside of the new softphone.
- Quickly enter information into a specific custom panel without ever leaving the softphone. In fact, with the new softphone, you can easily pull up all of the custom panels you’ve built into the call log, with all the same functions and validation rules. This is great for mobile users who aren’t able to access Desk Mode, or for those using the embedded CTM softphone inside of the Salesforce app with our integration.
What would you tell someone who felt reluctant to make the switch from the legacy version?
The most critical reason would be to have access to all the new features and functions we offer. The majority of our customers have transitioned to the new softphone, and have overwhelmingly showed that they prefer it. Being able to access your essential tools and perform routine actions all within the softphone is the key to driving efficiency for your workforce.
For any users reading this who are still using the legacy softphone: I would love to learn more about your experience. If there’s a compelling reason as to why you prefer the previous version, we could potentially use that information to further enhance our new softphone, and give you the opportunity to make the switch! Let us know your feedback at firstname.lastname@example.org.