Get the Activity Into a Queue
The Daktela Contact Centre solution gives you all the right tools to make your customer experience a pleasant one regardless of the communication channels your customers prefer when contacting your business. Some of their questions and concerns can be answered automatically using AI chatbots, but even then, the most important part of your customer experience will be the one taking place when the customer reaches one of your agents.
So you have set up your time conditions and announcements for your calls, created a web chat and click-to-call, connected your social media accounts. You’re ready to start getting on with the job at hand. It’s time to think about who will do what in your contact centre.
Select Your Agents
Unfortunately, Daktela can’t help you select the perfect contact centre employees – that one is up to you. On the other hand, we do know that not all of your employees are the same. They don’t all have the same skills and experience. Some might excel in written communication but are too nervous on calls, others might be naturally talkative and great at handling calls but perhaps not type fast enough to handle chats.
Taking into account the different skills your agents have, you can decide which people will take care of the traffic coming in via the individual channels you use and log them into the respective queues. Each contact centre has this set up slightly differently and implements its own strategies that define who receives activities about certain topics.
Distribute Activities in a Queue
The process described above gets the incoming activity from the customer to the relevant queue where the agents you have selected are waiting to process it. There will however be differences in skill and competence even among the group working on a given queue – even if you did a perfect job while selecting agents for each queue. This is where Daktela queue distribution strategies come into play, giving you granular control over how activities in a queue are “handed out” to agents.
There are 4 distribution strategies to choose from. Before we go into them, let’s first have a look at some basics that help you work with them more efficiently.
In Daktela, each agent has a set of rights assigned to them. These rights define what they can do in the contact centre, including what queues they can use and what priority they have when using them. Importantly, a set of rights can be assigned to any number of agents – when you edit the rights, any changes will apply to all agents that use them. This makes it very easy to manage even large contact centres.
The priority in a queue selected in Rights determines how each distribution strategy works with the group of agents that have the rights assigned to them. There are 11 priority settings so you can choose to differentiate between up to 11 agent groups.
When a call or chat reaches a queue, the activity is distributed to agents depending on the strategy you select and according to the priorities you set up for your agents. Each strategy has two aspects that define it:
- Whether the activity is distributed to all agents in a group or to individual agents.
- Whether or not the strategy checks if higher priority agentshave become available before continuing on to the next agent or a lower priority.
By combining these two aspects, a total of 4 distribution strategies are available to choose from. Let’s look at them in more detail.
Distribute to All Agents
There are 2 distribution strategies in Daktela that send activities to all agents that belong to a group – Everyone and Everyone Penalty Order.
The Everyone strategy selects the highest priority group where there is at least one available agent and starts ringing for all agents in that group. If no-one answers, the strategy first checks if someone with a higher priority has become available in the meantime. If they have, it will ring in the higher priority group the newly available agent is part of. If not, it continues on to a group with a lower priority.
The Everyone Penalty Order strategy is almost the same as Everyone – the only difference is that it doesn’t check for higher priority agents before continuing on to a lower priority group.
Typical uses of these 2 strategies are in smaller contact centres or operations facilities like warehouses – situations where there are only a few agents and it doesn’t matter which one answers the activity. Since the activity rings at all available agents in the priority group, you have no control over who actually answers it. This means that there is also no way of ensuring that your agents all have a similar workload and that they are all active. In certain situations, it’s not necessary.
Distribute to Individual Agents
At the other end of the spectrum, there are distribution strategies that send activities to individual agents – Least Recent and Random with Penalty Groups.
The Least Recent strategy is probably the most widely used distribution strategy in large contact centres. Because it distributes an incoming activity to the agent that has not had one the longest (in the given priority group), it is often seen as the “fairest” strategy that gives everyone the same amount of work. And because activities ring at a specific agent, you know exactly how everyone is performing too.
Like Everyone, Least Recent selects the highest priority group where there is at least one available agent and starts ringing for the agent with the longest inactivity time in that group. If they don’t answer, it goes through all agents in the given priority. It only moves on to a lower priority if there is no-one available in the highest one. Once it has moved to a lower priority and an agent becomes available in a higher one, the activity returns there.
Least Recent will always try to route your activities to agents with the highest priority – those with lower priority are there only as backup in case no-one from the highest priority can deal with an incoming activity. And thanks to 11 priority levels available in Daktela, you can set up multiple backup groups or only go with one or two.
The Random with Penalty Groups strategy also selects the highest priority group where there is at least one available agent, but instead of choosing the agent with the longest inactivity time, it chooses one at random. This means that over time, activities will also be distributed evenly among agents in each priority group. Unlike Least Recent, after it has rung at all agents in the highest priority and no-one has answered, Random with Penalty Groups continues on to a lower priority and never checks if someone has become available in a higher priority. It keeps distributing until it has rung at all agents of all priorities. If no-one answers even then, it will start again from the beginning.
A simple overview of the strategies available looks like this:
|Strategy name||Distribution to|
(in priority group)
|Checks for higher priority agent availability|
|Everyone Penalty Order||All agents||No|
|Least Recent||Individual agents||Yes|
|Random with Penalty Groups||Individual agents||No|
If you’re interested in reading an in-depth technical description of our distribution strategies including diagrams, please visit our documentation.
As you can see, by selecting different distribution strategies in your queues, you can achieve very different results in who receives your incoming activities. If your agents all have similar skills, you can set up a very simple single-tier strategy. And if there are big differences between them, you can opt for a multi-level hierarchy with main high priority agents and several back-up groups that take care of your customers when your highest priority agents are not available. Your setup can differ for each queue you use so you can pick the strategy that best suits each scenario you have in your contact centre.
If you’re looking for a contact centre solution and want to know more about how Daktela can help you get your activities to the right agents and provide better customer service in general, please get in touch with us using our Contacts page. We are looking forward to hearing from you!