ACD Preparation

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Preparing for an ACD implementation is an important step that often doesn't get the attention it deserves. This page is derived to provide information and ideas for information gathering. The more prepared you are to deploy ACD the better your experience will be.


1.       Agents are just that – independent of the actual telephone extension… an agent might be logged in anywhere.

2.       Members are extensions that are permanently assigned to groups.



1.       Agents Login

2.       Members don’t have that option (they’re either in the group or not)


Going Unavailable:

1.       Agents and Members have the ability to go Unavailable to take Group calls – it is referred to as Paused (paused for taking queue/group calls)

2.       When Members are Paused:

a.       Pause method is Extension Pause – button programmed with ABC<ext#>

                                                               i.      This places the extension in Pause at the PBX

b.      While in Pause – most call traffic to their phone is diverted at the PBX

                                                               i.      Pause button LED lights Red to indicate Pause active

c.       When Paused, calls to their telephone extension (someone dials the number) go directly to their VM

d.      Voice Announced Calls will be allowed

e.      When Paused, Calls to Groups to which this Member is assigned are diverted from this member (it is Unavailable for Group calls)

f.        Member Pause is a PBX-aware function

3.       When Agents are Paused:

a.       They put their Agent into Pause (not the phone)

                                                               i.      The phone continues to receive all non-queue call traffic

b.      The Agent is Unavailable for group calls for all groups of which they are a member

c.       Agent Pause is invoked by code 0*

d.      Agent UnPause is invoked by code 1*, see:

e.      Or the Agent may use the Queue Manager Pause button to Pause/UnPause

f.        Agent Pause is a PBX-aware function


Putting a phone in DND (Do Not Disturb):

1.       Phone DND is NOT a PBX-aware function.

2.       When in DND a phone will not ring and is not reachable by the PBX

3.       The PBX will still attempt to send calls to phones in DND because it is unaware of the state of the telephone.

4.       DND is NOT a queue/group-friendly function since it will allow calls in groups to be routed to destinations that will not respond.

5.       We recommend to NEVER use DND as a group call prohibiting method.


Queue Manager:

1.       Queue Manager is assigned to function with a telephone

2.       (we are writing the guide for QM now… it was just formally released a short time ago)

3.       Agents can log in at any desktop using QM

4.       QM gives status of the Queue (Call Group) and Members of whatever Queue they wish to monitor (or all PBX extensions)


Considerations for Queues:

1.       How are calls directed to the Queue?

a.       Routed there by auto attendant

b.      Routed there by DID (Direct Inward Dialing)

c.       Transferred there by the attendant/other user

d.      Routed there by way of another group (Failover Destination of a previous group)

2.       How should queued callers ring to Members/agents?

a.       Round-Robin (one, then the next, then the next…)

b.      All Ring (everybody at the same time)

c.       Least Recent

d.      Fewest Calls

3.       If not All Ring, how long should calls ring a member/agent before moving on to the next if unanswered?

a.       If an agent doesn’t answer a ringing call should that phone be placed into Pause automatically so that future queue callers will not be directed to this agent/member?

4.       What should callers in queue hear while waiting?

a.       Music

                                                               i.      What is the music selection

                                                             ii.      Messages on hold can be placed in this area as well since Music On Hold is a Playlist function

b.      Ringing

c.       Announcements

                                                               i.      How often should callers here this announcement? (seconds)

                                                             ii.      This announcement removes the caller from the queue ringing sequence while it is played

d.      Intro Announcement (message before entering queue)

e.      Announcement of position in queue?

                                                               i.      How frequently should callers hear this announcement? (in seconds)

5.       When an agent/member has concluded a queue call, should that agent be allocated a time of Wrap-Up for the call (for data entry etc.)?

a.       If so, how long?

6.       When Agents/Members are part of more than one group what is the weight of one group over another?

a.       E.g. a Sales Queue may have a heavier weight than a Customer Service queue while members/agents might be part of both

b.      Weighting of groups/queues is a number of 0-99… 99 having the most weight.

7.       What is the Priority of the Agent/Member in the queue compared to other agent/members?

a.       E.g. If an agent is in both Sales and Customer Service queues they might have a higher priority in the Sales Queue than the Customer Service queue if they are primarily a sales resource.

b.      Priorities are assigned members/agents from 1-99 where 1 is the HIGHEST priority

8.       How long should callers be allowed to remain in the Queue before being sent to a Failover destination?

9.       What is the Failover destination for the Queue? Could be:

a.       Extension

b.      Voice Mail

c.       Another Queue

d.      Services

                                                               i.      HangUp

                                                             ii.      Voicemail Gateway

                                                            iii.      Directory

e.      Branch Office

f.        Menu

g.       Schedule

10.   Are callers waiting in the Queue allowed to dial a digit to invoke action?

a.       What action?

                                                               i.      Send to:

1.       Another Queue/Group

2.       Extension

3.       Voice mail

4.       Etc.

b.      What digit does what?

11.   What is the desired queue call answer time?

a.       In seconds (this is a target for optimum service desired)

b.      If this time is exceeded should an alert be presented to QM users?

12.   What are the maximum desired callers in the queue?

a.       If exceeded, should an alert be presented to QM users?

13.   Should an alert be presented to QM users when there are fewer agents/members available than desired?

a.       If so, what is the desired number of available agents/members?

14.   Should an alert be presented to QM users when there are fewer agents/members online than desired?

a.       If so, what is the desired number?

15.   Should a Text Message alert be delivered to QM (Chat) users when queue calls are Abandoned?

a.       If so, which users? (Extension number list)

Checklist - Futher Considerations

  • Allow one person to handle mulitpe calls
    • See:
      • Members
      • Agents
      • Login
      • Logout
      • Pause
      • Agent Pause
      • Agent Un-Pause
      • Ring In Use
      • Auto Fill
  • Allow on person to get backup when overburdened
    • See:
      • Members
      • Ring Strategies
      • Failover Destination
      • Timeout
      • Agent Ring Time
  • Provide Callers with advertisements while waiting
    • See:
      • Periodic Announcement
      • Periodic Announce Frequency 
      • Music On Hold
  • Advise Callers on placement into Queue
    • See:
      • Intro Announcement
  • Keep Callers advised of status in Queue
    • See:
      • Announce Hold Time
      • Announce Frequency
  • Provide diverse skills to match caller needs (language, skills-level)
    • See:
      • Branch Office
      • Remote Worker
      • Priority
      • Wieght
  • Provide indication of caller source and/or Queue Stats to Queue Agent
    • See:
      • Agent Announcement
      • Caller ID Prefix, replacement
      • DID Caller ID
  • Utilize Agents based on geography
    • See:
      • Remote worker
      • Branch Office
      • Schedules
  • Utilize Agents of desparate queues when this queue is satuarted
    • See:
      • Exit Strategies
      • Failover Destination
    • Utilize Caller Routing based on Schedule
      • See:
        • Schedules
  • ID Origin of Call - via label
    • See:
      • Advanced Custom Caller ID
  • ID origin of Call - verbally
    • See:
      • Agent Announcement
  • Set Goal for Service Level - allotted time in which callers are to be answered before considered an alert scenario
    • See:
      • Service Level
      • Target Time
      • Percent Target Time