Migrating your dialer from hosted to inhouse - F.A.Q.

A user of our hosted predictive dialer recently asked us a few questions regarding migrating a hosted dialer to an inhouse server. The questions pretty much covered all you need to know about this, so this blog entry reproduces his questions and our responses to him:

What is the cost?
We charge $299 one time for standard setup on single server. There is also optional support for $199/month for upto 40 users on single server. The one time charge includes transferring settings and data from your hosted server. The optional monthly charge includes central monitoring of your server for CPU load, memory use and hard disk failure. In addition you get telephonic support as at present.

Do we use our own phone lines or are they yours? If yours, do they have a monthly charge?
You can do both. 
option 1. Our phone lines: nothing changes, you pay $0.0099/minute long distance like for hosted dialers. 
option 2: You take local phone lines (T1/E1). You need one for each 10 agents for 2.5 max dialing ratio. Thus for say 30 agents you need 3xT1. The cost of the T1 will be available from your local carrier. However please do inform them that you will be using it for a predictive dialer, since those T1s are usually charged higher. Also, we charge $299 one time additional to setup the T1s on your server

What is needed to set it up?
Once you decide which of the 2 options you would like to go with, we will send you the hardware specifications, and give you a download that you need to burn on a DVD and boot the server with. After that we need support of a local technician who will take telephonic instructions from us and bring the server onto the Internet. Once the server is online, it connects to our control systems and our engineers take over the process. 

What about redundancy?
Redundancy requires a second server with all associated one time costs. However the standard server uses RAID to guard against hard disk failure. 

Would we need to purchase hardware/software? If so what would it entail?
We provide the software. For hardware you need to purchase a server locally that would cost between $3000 and $6000 depending on the brand, for 40 agents. In addition, if you decide to go with local phone lines, you need T1 cards that cost about $1000/T1. A redundancy backup server will double the hardware cost.

Is there any support offered during the set up? After the set up?
Of course, we tell you exactly what you need to do in the setup process and help in procuring hardware. After setup the monthly support is optional as detailed above. You can use monthly support for a few months and then terminate it. Despite taking monthly support you do need some basic local technical help, in case the server is completely unresponsive or for some reason goes offline. 

How much bandwidth do we need?
Inhouse dialers consume thrice the bandwidth of hosted dialers. For 3x dialing ratio you need 100kbps/agent with voice compression and 250kbps without. Please check if there is any Fair Use Policy on the line

Will I save money migrating to inhouse? 
Our customer did not really ask this question, but we'll answer it any way. You dont. Not much anyway. Think about it: hosted services like ours buy servers and bandwidth cheaper than you can. Further, you pay for increased bandwidth requirement and pay us to manage your servers for you. When the math on this is done, you could even end up spending more on inhouse systems, despite losing the flexibility of scaling in hours (up or down) that our hosted service gives you. 
In our humble opinion, inhouse dialers make sense only if you need to integrate other inhouse software (e.g. inhouse CRM) with the dialer, you want to use local phone lines or to cater to special requirements such as HIPPA compliance etc. Another case where you would save is if you intend to manage your servers without help from us. 

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