Call Center Queues

From the call center app, you can set up and manage call queues to hold and route incoming calls depending on your business needs. Using queues, you can manage calls in the order they are received.

NOTE: Only administrators can create and delete queues. Managers can edit them.

Before you start

  • Verify that your agents and members are listed with correct phone numbers
  • Create a list of extensions to reserve for the call center
  • Decide on your “hold” message: music, message, or queue time
  • Decide routing strategies and how agents should be assigned

Adding a call center queue

  1. Go to Apps > Call Center.
  2. Click Add New Queue and enter a name for the queue.
  3. Assign either a spare number or a new extension number.
  4. Click Next - Queue Configuration to define the queue settings as follows:

    • Queue Routing Strategy: Defines how calls will be distributed from this queue to recipients:

      • Round Robin - offers calls to the agents in a “round robin” system which is the order that agents log in to the queue.
        • Agent 1, 2, 3, 4 are logged in and Ready.
        • Queue might select agent 2, 3, 4, 1 for call offers order.
        • If agent 1 doesn't answer the call, it would go to call 2, if agent 2 answers the call, any new call is offered to call 3.
      • Least Calls - offers the call to the agent that has the fewest completed calls since logging in.
        • The agent that has handled the least calls during their session is offered a new call.
        • If multiple agents are tied for least handled call offer, queue selects an agent at random.
        • If an agent logs out of session, and logs back in, their handled call count resets and the agent becomes the least calls handled.
        • Changing state from away/available does not impact the count.
      • Least Offers - offers the call to the agent that has the fewest call offers since they logged in.
      • Most Idle - offers the call to the agent with the longest idle time since their last call.

        • Calls continue to be offered to the agent with the most idle until the agent answers the call.
        • After a call is handled, the most idle counter resets.
        • For example, agent 1, 2 and 3 are members of a queue and are on a call. Agent 2 hangs up first, then 3 then 1. Agent 2 is the most idle agent.
        • If a call is rejected by the most idle agent, it continues to try that agent until the agent either answers the call or becomes unavailable.
      • Ring All - offers the call to all agents.

    • Hold Treatment: Defines the media that should play while callers are waiting in this queue. You can select from the available media files, or upload a new file (.wav or .mp4). You can use a URL to stream hold music, however you must be able to set it up so that it plays 24/7 without a re-login interruption. Otherwise, it could result in no hold sound.

    • Queue Timeout: Defines how many seconds the call should sit in a queue before timing out.

      • If "Escalation Callflow After Timeout" is configured, the call timeous to the specified destination.
      • If no escalation is configured, the call terminates or drops.
      • Maximum queue timeout is 7200 seconds.
    • Queue Call Limit: Defines the number of calls that can be in the queue before the calls timeout to the callflow steps. If the call limit is 1, any new call that tries to enter the queue is dropped and counts towards missed calls. IP Telecom recommends setting this to 0 to avoid any restrictions.

    • Timeout Immediately if Empty: If enabled, this setting triggers calls to leave the queue immediately when there are no recipients logged in. The queue is not considered empty if an agent in a queue is in an "Away" state or on a call.
    • Escalation Queue: Escalates the caller to another queue when it leaves the current queue.
    • Escalation Callflow After Timeout: Escalates the caller to another call flow when the call has exceeded the timeout duration. queue
  5. Click Next-Agent Settings to define agent behaviour as follows:

    • Agent Recovery Time: Defines the number of seconds allowed between calls. While in recovery time the agent's phone is considered "busy" to the caller and the call routes to the next agent or event. The recovery time is displayed and counted down in the call details.
    • Force Away on Rejected/Missed: If enabled, and the agent rejects or does not answer the offered call, the agent is forced into “away” status. The agent must re-activate their status.
    • Agent Connect Timeout: Defines the number of seconds the call will ring at an agent's extension before it is sent to another agent of the next event in your callflow. The number of rings varies depending on your country and ring style, but in general a 20 second setting allows the phone to ring 4-5 times.
  6. Click Create Queue to finish setting up the queue.

  7. After the queue is created, you can proceed to add members to your queue or you can skip this step now and add agents and managers later.

IMPORTANT: You must add agents first, then if you want to add managers, select one of your agents as a manager. You will need at least one agent or manager in your queue before you can use it.

Editing a call center queue

Managers and administrators can modify a queue.

  1. To update the options for existing queues, click the settings icon for that queue.

    queue

  2. From the queue settings window, you can change any of the details, configuration, or agent behaviour.

  3. Save your changes.

NOTE: Only administrators can delete a queue.

edit

Setting up call recording for a queue

Before you can set up call recording for a queue, your VoIP account must have the Call Recording app installed. Contact your administrator to add this application if it doesn't show in your App exchange.

IMPORTANT: You can only set up call recording after the queue is created.

  1. To enable call recording on an existing queue, click the settings icon for that queue.

    queue

  2. In the Recordings section, slide "Record Queue" to Enabled.

  3. Set "Enable Pause on Recordings" if you want an agent to have the ability to stop and start recording using shortcodes.
  4. Save your changes.

    Queue recording

For more information about call recording, see Call Recording.

Pause on recordings

If Pause on Recordings is enabled, you can use shortcodes to stop and start recording:

  • *9 to stop recording
  • *7 to restart recording

Frequently asked questions

Q: If Call Recording is enabled for a queue, do I need to configure it in the Call Recording application?

A: No, call recording on a queue level is independent of any other settings.

Q: If Call Recording is enabled for a queue, do I need to include it in the queue callflow?

A: No, if "Record Queue" is enabled, it updates the callflow behind the queue and adds a "start recording" action on each call before putting the call into the queue.

Q: What determines an Abandoned Call?

A: A call is considered an abandoned call when an event happens that is not related to an agent's action, for example

  • The call disconnects.
  • The caller hung up the call while waiting in the queue.
  • The caller pressed 0 for added options (voicemail, etc.). This only available if the "Zero Out" configuration is configured in the queue settings.

Q: What determines a Missed Call?

A: Missed Calls are calls that were offered but were not answered by the agent. Each time a call is offered to an agent and the agent does not answer, the call is considered missed and the count increments. If a call rings the agent again, the count increases if the agent does not answer the call.

Where to find more information