What is CC Routing?
Call center routing, also known as Automatic Call Distributor (ACD) routing, is a telephony technology used in call centers to distribute incoming calls to the appropriate agents or departments. It’s a critical tool for managing large volumes of inbound communications, ensuring that callers reach the appropriate individual who can handle their concerns in the most efficient and timely manner.
How Does CC Routing Work?
CC routes divide the incoming calls among available agents in the most effective manner. Typically, the process consists of three main stages, so let’s examine each one of them in more detail.
It is a process used to identify the purpose of a caller’s contact and the type of support they need. An Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system is typically used in this process. The IVR will ask the caller to provide certain information, either by speaking or using their phone keypad. This information might include their customer number, the reason for their call (e.g., technical support, billing inquiry, sales, etc.), or other relevant details. Call centers might use the information gathered during call qualifying to prioritize calls. For instance, a call from a VIP customer might be given priority over other calls leading to shorter average wait time and faster troubleshooting.
That is the system used when all agents or representatives are busy and an incoming call cannot be immediately answered. The call is then placed in a waiting line or “queue” until an agent becomes available to take the call.The Automatic Call Distributor (ACD) system typically manages this queue, determining the order in which calls will be answered based on predefined rules. These rules could be as simple as “first in, first out” or more complex, involving factors like the caller’s priority level, the nature of the inquiry, or the caller’s history with the company.
While waiting in the queue, callers typically hear hold music or pre-recorded messages, which can include information like estimated wait times, prompts to leave a voicemail, or options to receive a callback when an agent becomes available.
Call distribution in call center (CC) routing refers to the process of evenly and efficiently allocating incoming calls to available agents in the call center. The goal is to optimize resources, reduce customer wait times, and ensure the highest level of customer service. This stage is managed by the ACD system and it is also determined by the internal processes of the call center.
CC Routing Strategies
There are several different routing strategies, depending on the end goal organizations are trying to achieve. Let’s review the most popular ones and in what situations they would be applicable for businesses.
Calls are routed directly to a specific agent, department, or location without going through a central switchboard or automated system. In a call center, each agent or department usually has a direct inward dial (DID) number or extension. When a call comes in on one of these numbers, it bypasses the main call center routing system and goes straight to the designated recipient.
Round Robin Routing
Calls are distributed evenly among agents or departments. For example, if there are three agents, the first call goes to Agent 1, the second call to Agent 2, the third call to Agent 3, and the fourth call back to Agent 1.
Least Occupied Routing
It forwards incoming calls to the agent who has been idle or free for the longest amount of time. The underlying idea is that this agent is likely to be most ready to take on a new call, which leads to a more balanced distribution of the workload. As a result, employees will not be overwhelmed with back-to-back calls, as it ensures that agents who have just finished a call have some time before receiving the next one.
As the name implies, the agent with the most appropriate expertise receives the calls. Each agent is assigned one or more “skills” based on their training, experience, or area of expertise. For example, in a tech support call center, different agents might have skills in different product areas. One agent might be an expert in hardware issues, another in software issues, and yet another in network problems. When a call comes in, the call routing system identifies the nature of the problem and routes the call to an agent with the matching skill.
It is used to route calls based on the time of the day. This system can help optimize resources by taking into consideration agent availability, business hours, and peak call times. In a global business, time-based routing can be especially valuable because customers may be calling from different time zones. For example, calls made outside of local business hours can be automatically routed to an overseas call center where agents are currently working.It’s also useful for call centers that have agents working in shifts. For example, certain agents might work in the morning, others in the afternoon or overnight. With time-based routing, calls can be automatically directed to the agents who are currently on shift.
Interactive Voice Response (IVR) Routing
When a caller first connects, the IVR system might play a recorded message similar to: “Press 1 for Sales, Press 2 for Support, Press 3 for Billing…” Based on the caller’s input, the IVR system can then route the call to the correct department. More advanced IVR systems can also use speech recognition technology to understand spoken responses from callers, and can access information from databases to provide personalized responses. For example, a caller might be able to say their account number, and the IVR system could retrieve their account details and route the call to an agent with their information already on screen.
We hope we managed to shed some light on how the entire CC process works. If you are interested in CC routing and you are looking for high quality routes at attractive rates, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org