Calling Admin Portal – Configuring Call Queues

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Introduction to Call Queues

Call queues temporarily hold calls in the cloud when all users (agents) assigned to receive calls from the queue are unavailable. Queued calls are routed to an available agent when he/she is no longer on an active call. Each call queue is assigned a Lead Number, which is a telephone number outside callers can dial to reach users assigned to the call queue. Call queues are also assigned an internal extension, which can be dialed internally to reach users assigned to the call queue.

This article includes the following Call Queue features, all configurable from the Calling Admin Portal:

  • Activating and deactivating Call Queues
  • Modifying call queue Profile information and settings
  • Assigning users (agents) to a call queue
  • Viewing call queue reports
  • Modifying greetings and announcement settings
  • Configuring overflow call routing

Call Queue Feature Notes

  • Users assigned to receive calls from the call queue are referred to as agents.
  • Multiple call queues can be configured on your account. Settings described in this article apply to each unique call queue.

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  • Auto Attendants often include an option to route callers to a particular call queue, however each call queue is configured with a Lead Number for callers to dial directly to the queue.

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  • Toll free numbers are often used to route callers to call queues. These numbers will not be available to assign from the Calling Admin Portal; they will instead be pointing to a specific site.
  • User features, such as call forwarding, are not invoked on calls to users from the call queue.
  • Agents (users) can “sign out” of the queue by activating Do Not Disturb.
  • All greetings must be formatted as CCIT U-Law, 8.000kHz, 8-bit Mono attributes as a .wav file.


Create a Call Queue

Once your Call Queue is created in Control Hub, you can manage it following the instructions below. For instructions on how to Create a Call Queue, visit this article.


Getting Started

To get started managing your Call Queues, follow these steps:

  1. From Control Hub, select the Calling tab in the left-hand navigation, and then select Features from the top, right menu.
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  3. Select Call Queue from the top menu. A list of your Call Queues will appear.
  4. Select Edit on the Call Queue you would like to modify.
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  6. The Calling Admin Portal will open on the Edit Call Queues page.

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Call Queue Incoming Call Information

  1. Enter a name for the Call Queue in the Call Queue Name field. By default, the Call Queue Name field will be populated with the Call Queue phone number. You can change the name to something more descriptive. For example, New Car Sales.
  2. Enter the Extension of the queue. By default, this is the last four digits of the lead number that has been assigned.
  3. Enter the Caller ID. This name, along with the actual caller’s ID, is displayed on the user’s phone when a new call from the queue is presented.
  4. Select Save to save your changes.

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Incoming Call Information – Edit Call Forwarding

Select the Edit Call Forwarding button if you would like to forward your Call Queue to a different phone number. Options include:

  • Do not forward – If selected, will not forward calls to anther number.
  • Call forwarding always – If selected, will forward calls to the number you indicate in the Phone Number field.
  • Call forwarding selective – If selected, will forward calls to a specified number at specified times.

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When Call forwarding selective is enabled, you must create two rules:

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  1. First rule only containing the After Hours Schedule you would like to assign.
    • To add a rule, select Add from the Forwarding page to set up the forwarding details and time schedules on the Call Forwarding Selective Details page.
    • For the first rule, select the Time Schedule you would like to assign and then select None for your Holiday Schedule.
    • Enter the remaining details, including the number to forward to during this time schedule and whether you would only like calls from specific numbers to be forwarded to the number you indicate.
    • Select Save to save your changes.

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  2. Second rule only containing the Holiday Schedule you would like to assign.
    • To add a rule, select Add from the Forwarding page to set up the forwarding details and time schedules on the Call Forwarding Selective Details page.
    • For the second rule, select any Time Schedule and then select the Holiday Schedule you would like to assign.
    • Enter the remaining details, including the number to forward to during this time schedule and whether you would only like calls from specific numbers to be forwarded to the number you indicate.
    • Select Save to save your changes.

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Incoming Call Information – Alternate Numbers

With the Alternate Numbers feature you can assign multiple phone numbers or extensions to the Call Queue. Each number will reach the same greeting and each menu will function identically to the main number. You can have up to 10 alternate numbers ring to the Call Queue. To add an alternate number, follow these steps:

  1. Choose an alternate number from the Find Phone Number search bar.
  2. You can then enable the distinctive ring feature. If you would like to designate a different ringtone to play on a user’s phone when receiving incoming calls from an alternate number, check the box next to Use distinctive ringing.
  3. If distinctive ringing is enabled, select the unique ringtone from the drop-down menu next to the number you would like to assign it to.
  4. Select Save to save your changes.

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Language

Within the Language section of the Edit Call Queues page, you can select the language you would like to assign to the audio announcements for the Call Queue. Select from the options available in the drop-down menu. Then click Save to save your changes.

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Queue Settings – Queue Size and Overflow Settings

The Queue Size represents the number of calls that can be held in queue before the overflow policy is triggered. While calls are held in queue, users hear the configured Announcements. To configure, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the Queue Settings tab in the left-hand navigation.
  2. Enter the number of calls to queue before overflow settings are triggered. For example, if the queue size is set to 20, the 21st caller will be sent to the configured Overflow option.
  3. Choose from the following Overflow options:
    • Perform busy treatment – The caller hears a fast-busy tone.
    • Play ringing until caller hangs up – The caller hears ringing until they disconnect.
    • Transfer to phone number – Enter the number to which you want to transfer overflow calls. This can be an extension within any site or an external number.

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  4. You can also enable the following settings here:
    • Play ringing tone to callers when their call is sent to an available agent. If this option is disabled, callers will hear the music-on-hold greeting until the call is answered by a user.
    • Reset caller statistics upon queue entry. If this option is enabled, the preserved wait time of a call is reset when it is transferred from one call center queue to the other.
  5. Click Save to save your settings.

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Queue Settings – Announcements

Call Queue announcements are messages and music that callers hear while waiting in queue. There are four types of call queue announcements found under Advanced Settings on the Queue Settings page.

  • Welcome Message – Played when callers first reach the queue. For example, “Thank you for calling ABC Company. An agent will be with you shortly.” It can be set as mandatory. If the mandatory option is not selected and a caller reaches the call queue while there is an available agent, the caller will not hear this announcement and is transferred to an agent.
  • Estimated Wait Message for Queued Calls – Notifies the caller with either their estimated wait time or position in the queue. If this option is enabled, it plays after the entrance greeting and before the comfort greeting. This greeting is only played once while the caller is waiting in queue.
  • Comfort Message – Played after the entrance message and before music on hold. This is typically a custom announcement that plays information, such as current promotions or information about products and services.
  • Hold Music – Played after the comfort message in a repetitive loop. This announcement is typically a music file.


Welcome Message

  1. To enable, select the slider next to Welcome Message.
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  3. Check Welcome message is mandatory when played. This plays the entrance message to all callers regardless of agent availability.
  4. Assign a message to the queue. Entrance messages can be configured with the default system message or customized.
  5. Click Default to select the default message option.
  6. Click Custom to select the custom message option and upload a .wav file. Up to four entrance messages can be stored. If multiple messages are stored, they are played in the order listed.
    • Enter the description of the message (e.g. Welcome Message). There are no character limitations.
    • Select the Upload icon.
    • Browse for the file on your computer. All greetings must be formatted as CCIT U-Law, 8.000kHz, 8-bit Mono attributes as a .wav file.
    • Click Open.
    • If necessary, repeat these steps to add additional messages.
  7. Click Save to save your changes.


Wait Message

  1. To configure the wait message, select the slider next to Estimated Wait Message for Queued Calls.
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  3. Enter the default handling time.
  4. Then, choose one of the following options:
    • Select the Announce queue position option to notify the caller of their position in queue. Enter a maximum number. For example, if this was set to 20 or lower, callers 20 and lower hear their position in queue. The 21st caller and higher would not hear the message.
    • Select Announce wait time and enter the maximum wait time. For example, if this was set to two minutes or lower, callers with an estimated wait time of two minutes or less hear their wait time.
  5. Select Play High volume message (optional). A high-volume message is played to callers with an estimated wait time greater than the configured maximum and if the call number is greater than the maximum queue position. The estimated wait time is calculated by: Estimated Wait Time = Caller’s position in queue (average call handling time) / Number of agents available. If the system cannot calculate the handling time, default handling time is used to calculate the estimated wait time.
  6. Select Play High volume message (optional). A high-volume message is played to callers with a position in queue higher than the configured maximum.
  7. Click Save to save your changes.


Comfort Message

  1. To enable, select the slider next to Comfort Message.
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  3. Enter the time between messages (in seconds) to configure the frequency in which the comfort message is played. Once the comfort message has played to completion, the caller hears hold music (if enabled).
  4. Configure the message to be assigned to the queue. Comfort messages can be configured with the default system message or customized.
  5. Click Default to select the default message option.
  6. Click Custom to select the custom message option and upload a .wav file. Up to four entrance messages can be stored. If multiple messages are stored, they are played in the order listed.
    • Enter the description of the message (e.g. Welcome Message). There are no character limitations.
    • Select the Upload icon.
    • Browse for the file on your computer. All greetings must be formatted as CCIT U-Law, 8.000kHz, 8-bit Mono attributes as a .wav file.
    • Click Open.
    • If necessary, repeat these steps to add additional messages.
  7. Click Save to save your changes.


Hold Music

  1. To configure the music on hold to be played to callers while waiting in queue, select the slider next to Hold Music.
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  3. Configure the music to be assigned to the queue. Hold music can be configured with the default system message or customized.
    • Click Default to select the default message option.
    • Click Custom to select the custom message option and upload a .wav file. Up to four entrance messages can be stored. If multiple messages are stored, they are played in the order listed.
    • Enter the description of the message (e.g. Welcome Message). There are no character limitations.
    • Select the Upload icon.
    • Browse for the file on your computer. All greetings must be formatted as CCIT U-Law, 8.000kHz, 8-bit Mono attributes as a .wav file.
    • Click Open.
    • If necessary, repeat these steps to add additional messages.
  4. Click Save to save your changes.


Call Routing

On the Call Routing tab, the “How do you want your phones to ring?” setting determines the order in which calls are delivered to users assigned to the call queue.

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  1. Select how you want calls distributed in the queue:
    • All at once – When an incoming call is received from the queue, all queue agents ring simultaneously.

    Or

    • One at a time – Rings queue agents one at time. If you select this option, select how you want the calls distributed. Choose from the following options:
      • Top Down – Ring the agents one-at-a-time, always starting with the same agent and ringing in the same order. The agent configured at the top of the “Assigned” list will ring first, followed by the agents listed beneath, in sequential order.
      • Circular – Ring the agents one-at-a-time, always ringing the agents in the same order. The order of the agents in the “Assigned” list represents the order in which the agents’ phones will ring, beginning with the individual that follows the last agent receiving a call from the queue.
      • Longest Idle – Ring the agent who has been idle (i.e., not on a queued call) the longest.
      • Weighted – Route calls to agents based on their pre-configured weight (percentage) assignments. If this option is selected, you must assign weights to the agents. Click Set Weighted Percentages. Use the slider to assign the percentages. The percentages must equal 100%. Agents assigned a 0% weight will only receive calls if all other users are busy. Click Apply to save these changes.
  2. Click Save to save your changes.


Bounced Calls

Bounced calls are those that were sent to an available agent, but the agent does not answer. These calls are then placed back into the queue at the top of all the queued calls. You can enable/configure the following Bounced Calls settings, from the Edit Call Queues page on the Call Routing tab.

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  1. Check Mark calls as bounced after set number of rings to configure the number of rings a caller hears before the call is bounced. Then enter the number of rings.
  2. Check Bounce if agent becomes unavailable to bounce a call being sent to an agent if they transition to an unavailable state while the call is en route.
  3. Check Alert if call on hold for set wait time to notify an agent if a call they received from the queue was put on hold for longer than the configured time. Enter the time in seconds.
  4. Check Bounce if on hold for set wait time to bounce the call from the agent if the caller was placed on hold by the agent for longer than the configured time. Enter the time in seconds.
  5. Click Save to save your changes.


Distinctive Ringing

The distinctive ringing setting allows admins to designate a different ring tone to play on the agent’s phone when they receive incoming calls from the call queue. This allows them to audibly differentiate inbound queued calls from non-queued calls. To configure, from the Edit Call Queues page on the Call Routing tab, follow these steps:

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  1. Check Enable Distinctive Ringing, to activate the feature.
  2. Select the unique ringtone from the Ring Pattern menu.
  3. Click Save to save your changes.


Agent Settings

Users who will receive calls from the queue are defined as agents and must be assigned to the queue. On the Agents tab in the Edit Call Queues window, you can make agent assignments, view your number of agent and supervisor licenses and enable multiple calls per agent. Note: Agents can be assigned to multiple queues.

To configure, select the Agents tab and follow these steps:

  1. Allow multiple calls per agent – Check this box to present agents with multiple queued calls even when on an active call received from the queue. By default, this feature is disabled, and calls are queued until the agent disconnects with the current call.
  2. You can assign users across different locations within your organization. Select the location with the user(s) you would like to assign from the Find Location drop-down box.
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  4. Select the Find and Assign search box and select an available user from the drop-down menu.

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Note: The order of the agent in the assigned list will determine the order the calls are distributed, if you have selected certain one-at-a-time ring policies.


Reporting

  1. To view reports on the Queue and Agent Stats, go to the Reporting tab.
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  3. Click on the date field and enter the date you wish to pull a report from.
  4. Select Run Report.
  5. The report will show Queue Stats displayed with Agent Stats in the next tab.
  6. Select the Refresh icon to update the report at any time.