In this post, we are going sort through the evolution of the different programs that have been used over the years to create call processing instructions. We will explore how programming progressed from exclusively text-based scripting to scripts and graphical-based flows.
Tips for working with flows will be described. We will discuss the introduction of the Contact Router and different ways of supporting the first place (Contact Router or Master script) where all contacts are processed.
First, some terminology and Mnemonics:
- Script – text-based call processing instructions
- Flow – Graphical-based call processing instructions
- Application [meaning 1] – Call Processing Instructions (text or graphical) Think “call processing application” (When the term Application is used in this document, it is with this meaning)
- Application [meaning 2] – Reporting based on calls following the call processing instructions (as derived from Primary script/flow). Think “reporting application”
- Block – an object in a flow representing the equivalent of specific text script instructions
- Service Creation Environment (SCE)
- Orchestration Designer (OD)
- Service Pack (SP) – Software update and fixes for AACC (i.e., SP5 = Service Pack 5)
- Avaya Aura Experience Portal (formerly known as Avaya Voice Portal) – Self Service/Integrated Voice Response (IVR) system
- Contact Center Manager Administration (CCMA) – this server provides the Graphical User Interface between the Contact Center Manager Server (CCMS) database and the person using the database (e.g., the browser of the AACC Administrator or Supervisor)
- Chronological order of the last three software releases from oldest to newest:
CC6, CC7, AACC 6
By examining the Avaya Aura Contact Center’s transformation from scripts to applications (scripts and flows), we will be in the best position to understand the current state of call processing design. This is because the latest processes can be traced to the original software. Perhaps you have used one or more of the previous interfaces? How has the program for creating Avaya Aura Contact Center Call Processing instructions evolved?
For a long time, writing text-based scripts were the application designer’s only option – first in a thick client (software installed on the script-writer’s PC) and then in a thin client (the script design occurred within the browser window). In the release prior to AACC6 (CC7), the Service Creation Environment (SCE) was introduced. SCE is based on Eclipse software. It is a program that the application designer installs from CCMA to his computer. The ability to create Graphical Flows is the main reason for the change from the browser-based scripting to the Service Creation Environment and later options. Avaya rebranded the Service Creation Environment as the Orchestration Designer (OD) as a part of the AACC 6.2 release. OD provides mostly cosmetic changes to the appearance of the block icons when compared to SCE. Avaya Aura Experience Portal contact flows can be designed with a separate plug-in for Orchestration Designer.
- Thick Client model (Heritage releases 1-5)
- Browser Based (Heritage CC6)
- Eclipse Platform (Heritage CC7 to present)
a) Introduced to provide support for graphical flows
b) Using browser to write scripts is not an option
c) Initially called Service Creation Environment (SCE)
d) Now called Orchestration Designer (AACC 6.2 – SP4 and higher)
We have noted that the last two software releases provide us with the ability to create graphical flows as well as scripts. How do we handle the choice between working with a script or a flow? What considerations and options should be evaluated when working with SCE or OD?
The two greatest challenges to the script writer are to know all possible conditions a call/contact might encounter and to design instructions to properly identify and address each condition. As with any language, developing the vocabulary of scripting takes time and practice. The graphical flow capability of SCE/OD addresses the issue of learning the scripting language because the scripting complexity is replaced with blocks that represent the code. The flow format was introduced to accelerate the ability to write applications.
Next week we’ll finish with working between a script and a flow.
Excerpted and available for download from Global Knowledge: Going with the Flow: How to use Orchestration Designer successfully in support of the Avaya Aura Contact Center