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Auto Dialer Vs. Predictive Dialer: Which Is Right For You And How Do You Choose One?

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Published: May 20, 2022

One factor in deciding the performance of your calling campaigns is your agents’ productivity. The time they spend not talking to your contacts can cost your campaign a few cents.

Auto dialers and predictive dialers help you solve that problem.

However, knowing the difference between an auto dialer and a predictive dialer on a deeper level will help you choose the right dialer for each campaign and get more conversions. 

This blog helps you there. So, let’s get to it.

Auto dialer

An auto dialer is known for effectively managing the workload by distributing the connected calls with available agents. 

So, how do auto dialers work?

The dialer dials ‘x’ number of contacts and connects answered calls to an available agent. If the call gets dropped, that is, in the absence of an agent to answer the call, the dialer plays a prerecorded message.

When you set up your campaign using an auto dialer, you will have the option to set up the dialer call rate per agent. This determines the number of contacts dialed per initiation. For example, if you set the dial rate as 1:1, the dialer dials 1 contact per agent. 

You can set the dial rate as up to 3:1. However, as per FCC regulations, if your contact answers the call, and no agent answers it till 2 seconds after your contact answers the call, the call is considered abandoned. Such a call needs to play a recorded message. 

The FCC requires that dialers keep this abandonment percentage below 3 among the answered calls. 

To help you keep your contacts’ experience non-hampered, CallHub’s auto dialer gives you two options to handle dropped calls: 

  1. Hangup
  2. Play a recorded message

Even if the call goes to an answering machine, you have the same two options to handle them.

Ideal for

  • Teams with less than eight agents. 
  • Campaigns where the contact list quality is poor.
  • Getting in touch with inactive members, donors, or customers.

Predictive dialer

auto dialer vs predictive dialer example

A predictive dialer is the go-to for campaigns that want to establish maximum connectivity. A predictive dialer works on calculations and predictions and aims at minimizing downtime of your agents’ productivity. 

It dials multiple contacts at once, but not in a way auto dialer does. 

A predictive dialer dials numbers a few moments before your agent ends the previous call by estimating your agent’s call duration. This ensures the dialer dials the number just in time so your agent can get on the call within 3 seconds. 

A predictive dialer lets you make 110 calls per hour with this dialing mechanism. It also considers multiple factors such as

  • The number of agents,
  • Call duration,
  • The average number of calls answered,
  • Time taken to answer each call, and so on.

These predictions are made based on the patterns observed in the previous calls.

This way, your agents always have the next call waiting once they finish each call. This ensures that no agent’s time goes wasted and lets you connect with maximum contacts.

Even a predictive dialer lets you enable drop restrictions and handle dropped calls the same way as the auto dialer.

Ideal for

  • Teams with over eight agents.
  • For campaigns with large call volumes with a shorter timeframe.
  • Promotional campaigns where forming a relationship is not a priority.
  • Outreach to existing customers with time-sensitive updates.
  • Conducting short surveys and collecting feedback. 
  • Getting out the vote.
  • Follow up and reminder calls to your members, donors, customers, etc.

What is the difference between an auto dialer and a predictive dialer?

There are multiple factors to consider when it comes to selecting a dialer. Let’s look at the differences between an auto dialer and a predictive dialer.

Dialing mode

A predictive dialer dials numbers, considering an agent’s availability and adjusts the dial rate accordingly. An auto dialer dials numbers purely based on the dial rate set by the campaign manager. Whereas, with an auto dialer, it’s a simple distribution of calls, with no predictions or calculations.

Because of its ability to predict the dial rates, a predictive dialer helps you achieve maximum agent productivity. However, you must have over eight agents in your calling campaign, so your contacts don’t end up on a call with no agent to answer. 

So, with a predictive dialer, the chances of your contact picking up the call when an agent is not available are minimal.  

Connecting agents to live calls

Although an auto dialer can reduce agent idle time by connecting only answered calls to agents, it falls short of the ability to make calls based on the availability of agents.

With a predictive dialer, there may be instances where the call gets connected and answered, but the agent joins the call with a 2-3 seconds delay. This happens when your agent spends a few seconds longer on the previous call than the time estimated by the predictive dialer. 

Although such delays are absolutely minimum, CallHub has you covered for any possible worst-case scenarios, with an option to leave voice messages in such instances.

However, auto and predictive dialers filter out busy signals, voice mails, disconnected numbers, and unanswered calls for an unhindered campaign.

Call ratio

An auto dialer’s call ratio can go up to 3:1, while a predictive dialer sets the ratio automatically in real-time based on the factors we discussed earlier. 

This dial rate on an auto dialer must be set based on the quality of your contact list. For instance, say you have a contact list with a bad answer rate, then the ideal dial rate would be 3:1. 

Now, for every agent in the campaign, the dialer dials 3 calls. This ensures that your agents don’t spend too much time not being on a call, in turn boosting their productivity.

Here’s a summary of the differences between an auto dialer and a predictive dialer:

Auto dialerPredictive dialer
Known for effectively managing the workload by distributing the connected calls with available agentsGo-to for campaigns that want to establish maximum connectivity.
Dials ‘x’ number of contacts and connects answered calls to an available agent.Dials numbers a few moments before your agent ends the previous call by estimating your agent’s call duration and availability.
You set up the dialer call rate per agent.The dialer calculates and sets the dial rate based on
* The number of agents,
* Call duration,
* The average number of calls answered,
* Time taken to answer each call, and so on. 
Ideal for
– Teams with less than eight agents. 
– Campaigns where the contact list quality is poor.
– Getting in touch with inactive members, donors, or customers.
Ideal for
– Teams with over eight agents.For campaigns with large call volumes with a shorter timeframe.
– Promotional campaigns where forming a relationship is not a priority.
– Outreach to existing customers with time-sensitive updates.
– Conducting short surveys and collecting feedback. Getting out the vote.
– Follow up and reminder calls to your members, donors, customers, etc.

Similarities between an auto dialer and a predictive dialer

Both auto and predictive dialers enable your agents to connect with more contacts, eventually leading to higher conversion rates.

They help you eliminate the manual efforts involved in selecting a contact to call and dialing, thereby minimizing human errors.

Now let’s see some common features between an auto dialer and a predictive dialer.

1. CRM integration

A CRM integration helps you connect your dialers with your Customer Relationship Management tool. Each detail you update on the dialer gets synced with your CRM and vice versa, allowing you better target your audience and personalize conversations in future campaigns.

2. DNC list filtering

As per TCPA regulations, any contact that mentions they do not want to be contacted should be removed from your contact list. These moved-out contacts get added to a DNC(Do Not Contact) list. 

CallHub’s auto and predictive dialers help you comply with DNC filtering by moving such contacts to a DNC list.  

3. Call monitoring

There may be a bunch of calls your agent needed assistance with, and now there’s not much you can do. How do you remove such bottlenecks and help your agents be prepared?

With CallHub, you get the option to monitor an ongoing call. This includes listening to a live call for quality check purposes and helping your agent out while they’re on the call if needed, without your contact knowing. 

4. Reporting

CallHub’s auto and predictive dialer provide detailed reports on your campaign, calls, and agents. These reports and dashboards help campaign managers to analyze the call outcomes, agent performance, and any other aspect of the campaign.

CallHub’s calling reports give you insights on:

  • Answer rate
  • Average call duration
  • Number of calls made
  • Unique contacts reached
  • Agent performance
  • Agent recruitment
  • Team leaderboard
  • Call dashboard

See how you can make the best of each metric.

Should you even have to choose?

In a nutshell, picking the right dialer for a campaign ensures you achieve the outcomes with the utmost efficiency. For instance, you need a predictive dialer when you have an extensive list and a large team and an auto dialer when you have a comprehensive list but a small team. 

So, the right dialer is not universal but depends on the kind of campaigns you run. 

CallHub offers both dialers under our call center software. In addition to the abovementioned abilities, it helps your agents have meaningful conversations using scripts and notes, logging all your calls, and syncing all the data with your CRM to help you run the best calling campaigns.

If you need further assistance understanding how auto and predictive dialers can help your different use cases, book a demo with our product experts.
Featured image: Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

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