IT and Business Insights for SMB Solution Providers

Cytracom Adds Free Analytics and Automation Service to its VoIP Platform

Called the Integrated Voice Intelligence Engine, or Ivie, the new offering automatically sends alerts and initiates continuity plans during service outages, and will soon help MSPs identify and diagnose call quality issues as well. By Rich Freeman

VoIP provider Cytracom LLC has equipped its core voice platform with analytics and automation technology designed to keep end users informed and operational during service outages, and to help MSPs identify and diagnose call quality issues

Called the Integrated Voice Intelligence Engine, or Ivie, and provided free of charge, the new offering continuously scrutinizes call traffic for anomalies and interruptions. Allen, Texas-based Cytracom ultimately plans to use it as the foundation for a family of solutions.

The first member of that portfolio, available immediately, is a voice continuity system that issues alerts when an end user’s VoIP service goes down and automatically puts customizable, pre-configured contingency measures into effect.

“Voice is extremely important to the end customer environment and when it goes down there’s a lot of finger-pointing in every direction,” says Vice President of Channel Eric Pinto, who joined Cytracom last October. Ivie’s voice continuity module is designed to limit confusion and frustration by notifying customers about service issues proactively and putting mitigation plans into effect rapidly.

The system lets MSPs define trigger points for when it takes action. Technicians can configure Ivie to send alerts if two out of three specific phones become unavailable, for example, and execute continuity plans should all three go down.

According to Pinto, continuity plans can include routing specific types of calls to specific individuals or groups, and will typically become operational within six minutes of an outage. Unlike the call forwarding or find me/follow me technology in most voice systems, he continues, Ivie’s continuity solution keeps entire businesses up and running rather than individual phone lines.

“Where we’re taking that a step ahead is making it network-wide,” Pinto says.

MSPs can choose whether Ivie send alerts exclusively to them or to their customer as well. Pinto expects most Cytracom partners to notify end users rather than leave them in the dark.

“Knowing the continuity plan is in effect could be important,” he says.

Ivie also automatically takes continuity plans out of action when standard phone service resumes. “We can auto-restore back to the normal state without the MSP having to be involved at all,” Pinto says.

A second, forthcoming Ivie solution will provide detailed voice traffic reporting data that technicians can use to spot and remedy call quality issues. An MSP who sees degraded call quality at a customer site every day between noon and 1pm, for example, might advise the client to investigate whether employees are overloading the network by watching Netflix during their lunch break.

“Providing that data to our partners is going to empower them in ways that we can’t even imagine,” Pinto says.

Cytracom plans to add further solutions and enhancements to Ivie in the future. Pinto declined to provide details except to suggest that those new capabilities could include functionality for anticipating VoIP issues before they develop into full-blown crises.

“Predictive alerts is something that I’m really excited about,” he says.

Though there are no integrations between Ivie and third-party RMM or PSA systems at present, links to management software from ConnectWise, Datto Inc.’s Autotask unit, and Kaseya Ltd. will arrive in “the near term,” Pinto says. Further connections to systems commonly utilized by end users, such as the Salesforce CRM system and Microsoft Office 365, may be added later as well.

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