This Service Level Agreement (“SLA”) applies to all AnswerFirst Communications clients. This SLA may be amended at any time by AnswerFirst Communications.

Scope of Agreement
There are two specific areas covered under the AnswerFirst SLA. They are “Service Availability” and “Abandonment Rate”.

“Service Availability” is the total time that the AnswerFirst network is available to the general public. The AnswerFirst Contact Center Platform will be available free of outages for 99.9% of the time. Service Downtime is any unplanned interruption in service during which AnswerFirst Customer Service Professionals are unable to process inbound calls and/or certain other inbound electronic communications.

“Abandonment Rate” is the percentage of inbound communications (ex. calls, emails, SMS chats, etc.) introduced to the AnswerFirst platform which terminate prior to being answered. Answerfirst will maintain an abandonment rate equal to or less than 5% during a billing cycle. To be considered “abandoned,” the call or chat must be disconnected by the initiating party and must be presented for a minimum of 18 seconds.

Maintenance Window
Scheduled Service Downtime is any interruption of services for server or network maintenance. The normal maintenance window will be Wednesday mornings between 1AM and 5AM EST, however other maintenance windows may be scheduled. AnswerFirst will make reasonable attempts to provide at least 24 hours advance notification. Notification is provided by subscribing to status.answerfirst.com.

Metrics Utilized
This section will define the metrics used to calculate service level compliance.

“Service Availability” is measured from the time a problem has been realized by AnswerFirst to the time the platform is once again able to receive and answer calls and/or chats.

  • The following formula is used to determine “Service Availability”: (((Total Time – Down Time) / Total Time) * 100)

“Abandonment Rate” includes inbound communications to the AnswerFirst platform, lasting a minimum number of seconds, which terminate prior to being answered.

  • The following formula is used to determine “Abandonment Rate”: ((Total Abandoned Inbound Communications / Total Inbound Communications) * 100)

Redundancy Utilized
AnswerFirst utilizes multiple redundant systems, sites and procedures. The AnswerFirst infrastructure has been engineered to provide redundant networks, telephony services and Customer Service Professionals. AnswerFirst has contracted with multiple National Data Centers to host all traditional telephone equipment including: switching equipment, modems, etc. AnswerFirst data and software applications are hosted in the cloud utilizing the robust, redundant AWS (Amazon Web Services) infrastructure. In an effort to keep all data and voice moving, multiple data and SIP circuits are present at all locations. To further its commitment to redundancy AnswerFirst has remote Customer Service Professionals working in multiple locations throughout the United States.

SLA Exclusions

Service Exclusions

  • This SLA does not cover Service Downtime or Abandoned Calls/Chats that result from one or more of the following:
    • Problems with client’s equipment, connections, providers or network.
    • Problems with client-provided Internet/telephony connectivity or end-user software
    • Problems directly related to upstream providers.
    • Problems with entities inside Client’s internal network including, but not limited to, PBX, firewall configuration and bandwidth shaping, local area workstations, or other servers, equipment, and software that have a potential bearing on communicating with the AnswerFirst network.
    • Acts of God, natural disasters, public health emergencies, epidemics, pandemics, force majeure events or other natural, technological or man-made hazards.

Service Availability & Abandonment Exclusions

  • The following are excluded from the monthly calculation of Service Availability & Abandonment:
    • Client’s account is not in good standing (suspended).
    • Accounts utilizing low priority Distribution Groups.
    • Any downtime as a result of Scheduled Maintenance.
    • Any interruptions, delays or failures caused by Client or Client’s employees, agents, or subcontractors, such as, but not limited to, the following:
      • Inaccurate configuration
      • Client’s Scheduled Maintenance
      • Intermediary (tandem) inbound carrier issues (issues between client’s carrier and AnswerFirst carriers)
    • Client exceeding utilization agreement.
    • Any problems related to attacks on the network such as hacking, bandwidth-based attacks of any nature, and service or operating system exploits.
    • Inbound communications received during weather and other force majeure events.

Performance Credit

Performance Credit occurs when the “Service Availability” or “Abandonment Rate” metrics are not met in a billing cycle.

At the customer’s request, made within 84 days of SLA violation and upon verification of violation, AnswerFirst will credit the customer 5% of the billing cycle fee (not to exceed 100%) for each:

  • “Service Availability” outage hour in excess of the “Service Availability” commitment.
  • “Call Abandonment” percentage point in excess of the “Call Abandonment” commitment.