Our office is currently installing an Asterisk based Phone system called TrixBox. Asterisk is a Phone Branching System which allows for corporate phone directories, voice mail systems and other great telecommunication features. Even better is that both of these software systems are also open source. As I was reviewing the features offered by Asterisk, I did some research into how Asterisk can potentially integrate with Drupal. I learned about this Asterisk-Drupal integration module: http://drupal.org/project/asterisk. I think that Drupal is a great system that can be used as a project management tool and a customer relationship management tool. Recently, I cam across a project management tool built by Development Seed using Drupal called Atrium. I think that if Atrium is integrated with the Asterisk system, then it will provide a lot of unique value above that offered by software such as BaseCamp. A few things that I look forward to would be:
1) Click to Call: if someone clicks on a client's number, then he/she will be able to call that person using a VOIP phone rightaway
2) Call Recording: when client approve hours on new work over the phone, we can record the message and track it using the project management tool On the CRM side, CiviCRM is a great tool for client contact tracking. A lot of CRM nowadays integrate with phone systems. This is true especially for SalesForce.com. The integration of CRM with phone system is a great idea since phone call tracking will allow sales staff to easily figure out when to schedule follow-up calls. One of our clients BroadSoft has integrated SalesForce.com with their VOIP software. Looking at the Asterisk integration module, it seems that a lot of work still needs to be done to make it production ready. I still have not across any public cases of Asterisk/Drupal integration yet. If you have come across any, please comment on this post and let everyone know.