Microsoft Delivers Customer Care Framework to Help Service Providers Boost Call Center Efficiency and Enhance Customer Service

REDMOND, Wash. — May 2, 2005 — Microsoft Corp. today announced the general availability of Microsoft Customer Care Framework, an integrated software solution that streamlines call center operations for service providers. With Microsoft Customer Care Framework, call center operators can help improve customer service and reduce costs by decreasing average call times, eliminating redundant data requests and delivering better information faster to call center agents.

Microsoft Customer Care Framework integrates with service providers’ existing customer relationship management (CRM) systems, operations support systems (OSS) and business support systems (BSS), providing a unified platform that consolidates disparate applications and automates contact center workflow. Initially targeted at service providers, the solution is also applicable to any business whose call center operations represent a significant part of its operations.

“Contact centers are a crucial customer service function for telecommunications service providers, or any enterprise that has direct contact with a large customer base, for that matter,” said Maria Martinez, corporate vice president of the Communications Sector at Microsoft. “Because customer service satisfaction directly impacts the bottom line, businesses need a solution that improves call center efficiency, reduces operational costs and integrates seamlessly with back-office systems. With Customer Care Framework, Microsoft demonstrates its ability to channel its expertise into products that solve real and relevant business problems.”

Based on Microsoft .NET technology and Web services architecture, Microsoft Customer Care Framework is easy to implement, integrate and deploy. It works in conjunction with a suite of products, including Microsoft BizTalk® Server, Microsoft SQL Server™, Microsoft Windows Server™ and Microsoft Visual Studio® .NET. In addition, Web services enable multiple data sources and applications to be accessed simultaneously, increasing overall call center productivity and improving the quality of customer service.

“To remain competitive, today’s communications service provider (CSP) has to successfully and cost-effectively manage a complex system of customer service applications and databases,” said Sanjay Mewada, vice president of Yankee Group Research Inc. “As CSPs roll out new services and seek greater customer-centricity, they need a unified platform that brings together different applications and automates contact center workflow, which will result in increased efficiency and improved customer satisfaction.”

Initially designed to address the requirements of service providers, Customer Care Framework is being deployed by leading communications companies such as Primus Telecom Australia Pty Ltd.

“Achieving the highest levels of customer satisfaction is the No. 1 priority in our business,” said Robert Iftime, software development manager at Primus Telecom Australia. “Our ability to continuously deliver excellent customer service is a key differentiator in today’s highly competitive market. With its Customer Care Framework, Microsoft offers a solution that links key systems and information, which will enable us to streamline call center operations and, in turn, improve customer response times.” 

Because Microsoft Customer Care Framework is able to bring together data from different types of applications within a single user interface, it has been welcomed by large enterprises in other industries such as financial services, retail and communications. In addition, leading system integrator Accenture Ltd., independent software vendors CosmoCom Inc., Genesys Telecommunications Laboratories Inc. and Telution Inc., and industry partners such as Mahindra-British Telecom (MBT) are adopting the solution to improve their own customer care offerings.

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