Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Telephony Integration in SAP Cloud for Customer

In the past I have done an accreditation on the integration of SAP BCM (the previous name of SAP's Contact Center solution) and SAP CRM onPremise. The past two years I have been working as a C4C consultant and obviously became interested in the possibilities of integrating C4C with SAP Contact Center. When one of my customers requested details about the integration possibilities between SAP BCM and C4C, I investigated the possibilities, which I would like to share here.

Live Activity

SAP C4C offers the functionality of the Live Activity. This is the area where an incoming phone call in C4C is handled, considering you have set up the CTI (Computer Telephony Integration) integration, which is the integration with your telephony infrastructure. I am not going too much into detail here regarding the functionality, but in the Live Activity Pane:
  • customer and contact person are displayed when the phone number is recognized
  • in case the caller has not been identified based on the phone number, you can search for the correct caller
  • you can see all the tickets related to the selected customer, with the most recent ticket at the top
  • in case the phone number is not recognized and you cannot find the customer, you have the possibility to create a new individual customer/ contact person
  • you have the possibility to create a new ticket
  • you can directly enter notes to the phone call, which will be automatically registered as a phone call activity to your ‘selected’ customer.

CTI Architecture

So, what needs to be done to configure the CTI integration ? To explain that I will first talk you through SAP’s architecture picture of the CTI integration.

As you can see in the above picture, the CTI integration is a ‘client-side integration’. This means that a Contact Center agent needs the CTI Desktop Client on his/ her computer and the C4C CTI adapter to communicate with each other for inbound and outbound calls.
For the inbound call, the CTI Desktop Client needs to pass a parameterized URL to the SAP C4C CTI Client Adapter to pass information like the ANI, DNIS, and CAD. For the outbound call, the CTI Client Adapter uses a DLL, CODCTIConnector.dll, which contains a method for handling outbound calls. I will not go into detail on how to configure this, for that I would like to refer to the CTI Integration Guide.

Choosing the CTI Desktop Client: SAP Contact Center

So what if you are not using softphone for handling phonecalls? What if you are (still) using a standard PBX and actual phones? The Live Activity Pane in C4C could offer you the possibility to recognize a customer based on the incoming phone number (and maybe some extra parameters) and to do follow-up actions, but ‘picking up the phone’, ‘hanging up the phone’, ‘the complete routing of a phone call’, etc. would not be possible in C4C Live Activity. These softphone features need to be delivered and consumed via the telephony infrastructure.

And that is where SAP Contact Center (earlier SAP BCM) could come in again. See below architecture:

SAP Contact Center offers you all the Contact Center functionalities as once discussed already in my blog on SAP BCM ( It handles the queue selection, selects the right available agent and then routes the call to the agent. The SAP Contact Center softphone (the CDT/ SAP Convergence) then passes the call data to the SAP Cloud UI with the SAP Cloud CTI Adapter that takes care that the caller information is shown in the Live Activity Pane of C4C. Both your inbound and outbound calls can be facilitated this way. See below architecture picture of an outbound call as an example.

Obviously there are also other possibilities concerning the CTI Desktop Client. I know of companies thinking of using Skype for Business as CTI Desktop Client for integration with C4C for example. My customer is still in the process of making a choice what to use for passing the URL to the CTI adapter, and on SCN I have also read of companies investigating the possibilities of using a Web CTI APP:

I will be closely following the developments (especially with our customers), latest trends and future roadmap for the C4C CTI integration and hope to soon write a blog on some real experiences in this area. Also I invite you to share your experience if you have already implemented the C4C CTI integration. I am really interested to learn how your customers have handled the integration.