The settings for transferring respondents to the music test on the Fileserver are made from the Modem / Fileserver Transfers tab in Settings & Defaults. You can access the Modem Settings page directly by selecting it under the Utilities menu, or by clicking on this icon on the main ComQuest window:
When respondents are qualified by the interviewers to take your music test, they are transferred to the Fileserver to begin the interactive music test. This process is possible thanks to a feature offered by most phone companies known as Call Transfer. (The technical phrase for what we accomplish is a blind transfer on an outbound call).
When a respondent is qualified to take the music test, generally the interviewer will Flash the phone (by pressing a button on their headset labeled Flash, or R or Recall in Europe), which puts the respondent on hold. This is similar to the way Call Waiting works; when you get a second call on your phone at home and you Flash your phone, you have put the first person on hold so that you may converse with the second person who just called.
When transferring respondents to the Fileserver, the Workstation itself is not able to Flash the current call you're on.
This is because while you're still on the line, the modem does not have exclusive access to the line. The interviewer must manually Flash (hook switch) for one-half second, to get a dial tone. When an interviewer is on the phone with a respondent they're preparing to transfer to take the music test and they Flash the phone, they are in essence putting that respondent on-hold. They then will hear what's referred to as a secondary dial tone. This secondary dial tone is required so that the Workstation can then dial-in to the first phone line in the Fileserver's hunt group.
The Plantronics headsets generally used by ComQuest interviewers have a dedicated Flash button, which is programmed for the requisite 500ms hook switch.
If you're using the Plantronics model T10 headset, you should set the Flash switch to position 3. This generally sets the flash duration to an acceptable 500ms.
At this point, the Workstation dials to your Fileserver, waits for it to answer, then sends the respondent's ID number. For example, if you are transferring respondent #42150, you would also hear the Workstation send the touch tone sequence 4-2-1-5-0 after it has dialed to the Fileserver (and given the Fileserver a chance to answer the call on the first ring).
Modem Settings - Fileserver Transfers screen
Modem protocol settings include Initialization string, prefix and suffix fields, and any parameters required to transfer a call from a Workstation phone line to the lead line in your Fileserver's hunt-group of phone lines.
The Init String almost always should be set as ATZ^M. Other settings should remain as is, unless for some reason hardware changes (new modem or Workstation, etc.) requires changes be made. You can try an ATH in the Transfer Suffix if you're having problems with one or more modems not going back on-hook after a transfer (H is the command to Hangup). Putting Z in the Transfer Suffix instructs the modem to reset after each transfer. You're advised to contact Technical Support before making any changes which might result in the system not handling call processing properly. At the very least, be sure to note the initial settings entered into the system, before changing them.
Here's the order of commands that are sent to the modem, based on the settings in the Fileserver Transfer screen:
Init String; then Transfer Prefix + Respondent ID + Transfer Suffix
Adding a pound (#) symbol to the end of the Transfer Suffix will start the first voice prompt on the IVR system immediately.
If you use the # symbol to immediately begin the audio, we recommend adding about :03 to :05 seconds of a moog sweep or other unobtrusive audio effect as a buffer before your actual test instructions begin.
The Com Port setting should be the same for transferring calls as it is for dialing out (see Modem Settings For Outbound Calling).
The Transfer Prefix should begin with ATDT. This tells the system to dial the numbers that follow in Tone (rather than pulse) mode. Immediately following the ATDT command should be the number sequence for dialing up the Fileserver. If you're using internal phone lines, this could be as simple as the extension number for Line 1 of the Fileserver. For example, if it's located at Ext. 509, the Dialing Prefix would be ATDT509,,, If an entire phone number must be dialed, it would be:
If you must dial a "9" first, the sequence might look like this:
where 9 is followed by a comma ( , ) which is a two-second pause before dialing the phone number of 555-1234. You can also use the tilde character ( ~ ), to create a one-half second pause.
The three commas after the number is dialed in the Transfer Prefix are pauses designed to wait for the system to ring once and answer before the computer continues its transfer process. After the Workstation has dialed the Fileserver, it must wait for the Fileserver to answer before the Workstation begins sending the respondent's ID number (these are the tones you hear emitted from the Workstation after it has dialed over to the Fileserver.) If you don't give the Fileserver enough time to answer, usually :04 to :06 seconds, the Workstation might begin sending the respondent's ID number before the Fileserver has answered, in which case the respondent will not be handed off to take the music test (the Fileserver will not recognize the partial respondent ID number it has received as a valid ID number, and will hang-up on the respondent).
On the other hand, if the wait is too long, the Fileserver will answer the incoming call from the Workstation and then wait... and wait... and wait for a respondent ID number. After :08 seconds of not receiving any respondent ID number, the Fileserver will then hang-up, and again the respondent will not be handed off properly to take your music test.
The good news is that this hand-off sequence is programmed into your system when we install ComQuest at your station. The bad news is that if something changes (your phone lines or numbers, hardware or these file settings) you could begin to have transfer problems. When the settings are configured properly, and the interviewers execute the transfer function correctly, the transfer process will work flawlessly 100% of the time.
The Transfer Suffix should generally be left blank, or can contain H (to hang-up the modem after each transfer), or Z (to reset the modem after each transfer).
Wait During Transfer can be adjusted according to how long your system (phone and computer) takes to complete the transfer process. Generally, 14-18 seconds is adequate to complete the transfer process.
Interactive Card Playback Level
There is one other setting on the Modem Settings / Fileserver Transfer screen; the Interactive Card Playback Level. While this setting does not relate to the modem transfers from the Workstations to the Fileserver, it does affect the actual Interactive music test that each respondent will take, once transferred to your Fileserver.
0 is the normal level for playback. Generally this will always provide a nominal volume level playback of your song clips and voice prompts. However, you can adjust this level (for all respondents) by changing the value in this control before loading the Song Survey program on the Fileserver.
The range of acceptable levels for this setting is between -10 and 10. Numbers greater than 0 will increase the playback level; levels less than 0 (negative numbers), will decrease the playback. Keep in mind, if you increase the level too much, the Interactive system may not be able to hear the respondent's touch tone selection over the high-level song hook playback. This could become frustrating for some respondents, if they have to repeatedly press their selection before the system is able to hear it over the playback of the song clips.
Rather than altering the playback volume of your Interactive card, we suggest recording all song clips and voice prompts at the proper level in Cool Edit. Or, after they've been recorded, use the Normalize function in Cool Edit to adjust the levels of all wave files to 85%.
Connecting IVR Phone Lines
Each Rhetorex IVR card in your Fileserver is capable of processing 4 test takers at the same time. There are two phone jacks on the card itself; each jack is designed to accomodate a two-line (4-wire) phone cable. Lines 1 & 2 will plug into one port, and Lines 3 & 4 will plug into the other port of the IVR card. (Most stations will also split the first line, and run it into the LINE jack of the modem, which we use to dial-in with pcAnywhere to upload additional phone numbers and perform technical maintenance on your system.)
Although the audio connector on your card may differ slightly from that shown in the drawing below, the first two lines in your Fileserver hunt group (Lines 1 & 2) will still plug-in to the port furthest from the audio connector --- the port closest to the audio connector is for Lines 3 & 4.
Model 432 Rhetorex IVR Card
Lines In Use
This setting tells the IVR system how many phone lines (beginning with Line 1) you have that are active. Generally this will always be set to 4; the default setting for a standard ComQuest installation. But if you have more than one IVR card in your Fileserver, this might be set to 6 or even 8 lines. And, if you have trouble with one or two of the last lines in your hunt group, you could set this to 2 or 3, so that the IVR system won't attempt to access those inoperative lines (this would only work if the bad lines are indeed the last one or two lines). This setting is used primarily to determine when all the available Fileserver IVR lines are being used, so that the system can message the interviewers that the lines are full, and then update them when one or more lines become available.