Enterprise communications vendor Avaya said North American Aerospace Defense Command’s NORAD Tracks Santa program will be managed by Avaya.
Avaya in a statement said NORAD’s hotline volunteers are using the latest Avaya technology to have details about Santa’s travels. Experts monitor data gathered from radar, satellites and Santa Cams positioned in strategic locations around the globe. Hotline volunteers have access to information on Santa’s flight — from the weight of the gifts he carries to the number of pounds he gains as he eats cookies through the long night.
Last year, nearly 114,000 children around the world called the NORAD Tracks Santa hotline during its 23 hours of operation. Calls this year will be answered by more than 1,250 volunteers, including members of the American and Canadian militaries and their families, civilian employees of the Department of Defense and community volunteers.
The NORAD Tracks Santa hotline will rely on the same technology Avaya Government Solutions provides to the NORAD Operations Center at Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colo.
Avaya Aura contact center solutions will route each caller to a volunteer who speaks the caller’s language and has details on Santa’s location. The Department of Defense Joint Interoperability Test Command (JITC) has tested Avaya’s solution and has certified it is able to handle this most critical of Christmas Eve tasks.
Based on historical data accumulated through the years, NORAD says Santa most likely will travel west from the International Date Line under the darkness of night. In most countries, he arrives between 9 p.m. and midnight, and only after children are asleep.
NORAD Tracks Santa originated more than 50 years ago when an ad for a department store’s Santa hotline mistakenly listed the number of the Continental Air Defense Command Operations Center. The commander answering the phone didn’t want to disappoint the children who called, so he and his team provided live updates on Santa’s travels. Since then, thousands of volunteers and corporate contributors have helped NORAD keep the program alive.