Conditional routing allows an Automatic call distributor (ACD) to route calls intelligently by factoring in contextual and performance information. It does this through a series of if/then scenarios, where each condition has a predetermined treatment.
For example, the ACD may be programmed to route calls differently under the condition of very high call volume. A simple condition and treatment could be: If queue time exceeds ten minutes, then route callers to an answering service.
The relationship between condition and treatment can also be more complex: If queue time exceeds four minutes and caller is high-priority, then route call to next available agent in the secondary hunt group.
Complexity can scale up to a very high degree, guaranteeing that every variable is factored in.
How Conditional Routing Works
Conditional routing typically uses ACD data on both the contact centre’s performance and the caller’s location, as well as customer information sourced from the CRM. Data is also volunteered by the customer through functions such as IVR and auto-attendants.
The call is directed to a Vector Directory Number (VDN), an internal extension which in turn directs the call to a ‘vector’. Vectors are user-defined functions that include routing the call, playing recorded messages or redirecting callers to other resources.
Vectors also control other details of the call, such as the length of time hold music is played, and which announcements the customer hears.
The Benefits of Conditional Routing
This process allows for a greater degree of versatility in how ACD systems manage incoming traffic under various circumstances. It also enables contact centre planners to customise the experiences of callers based on their preferences and previous interactions.
Each call can be judged individually, ensuring that high-priority calls receive high-priority treatment. Multiple levels of call priority can be established, ensuring that sensitive and high-value contacts are handled quickly.
Variations in day-to-day operations can be accounted for, including seasonal staffing levels and opening hours around public holidays.
Conditional Routing can also increase the rate at which customers are routed to an appropriate agent first time. This cuts down on call transfers and reduces overall interaction time.
Multi-site contact centres can benefit from better load balancing, as traffic can be routed based on current or anticipated contact volume. Calls are diverted from more to less heavily occupied sites, making it simpler to achieve SLAs with given staffing levels.
The benefits of conditional routing are ultimately dependent on the contact centre’s knowledge of its customer base. A well-developed understanding of call priorities and customer needs must be the foundation of how call routing operates.