Cisco Packaged Contact Center Enterprise Administration and Configuration Guide, Release 10.5(1)
Manage Queues
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Manage Queues

Manage Queues

Calls are queued to agents based on their membership in skill groups or their qualification in precision queues.

Administrators have access to all tools documented in this chapter unless constrained by role and department. See Limit Administrator Access.

Supervisors have limited access to Skill Groups and display-only access to Attributes and Precision Queues.

Attributes

Attributes identify a call routing requirement, such as language, location, or agent expertise. You can create two types of attributes: Boolean or Proficiency.
  • Use Boolean attributes to identify an agent attribute value as true or false. For example, you can create a Boston attribute that specifies that the agent assigned to this attribute must be located in Boston. An agent in Boston would have Boston = True as the term for that attribute.
  • Use Proficiency attributes to establish a level of expertise in a range from 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest level of expertise. For a Spanish language attribute, for example, a native speaker would have the attribute Proficiency = 10.

When you create a precision queue, you identify which attributes are part of that queue and then implement the queue in a script. When you assign a new attribute to an agent and the attribute value matches the precision queue criteria, the agent is automatically associated with the precision queue.

Navigate to Unified CCE Administration Manage > Attributes to configure attributes.

Administrators can see and manage attributes. Supervisors can configure attributes for their supervised agents on the Attributes tab of the Agents tool. Global supervisors see all attributes. Departmental supervisor see global attributes and attributes in their department

Related References

Add and Maintain Attributes

This procedure explains how to add an attribute. For information on maintaining attributes, see Update Objects and Delete Objects.

Procedure
    Step 1   Navigate to Unified CCE Administration Manage > Agent > Attributes.
    Step 2   In the List of Attributes window, click New.
    Step 3   Complete the following fields:
    Field Required? Description

    Department

    yes (for departmental administrators)

    A departmental administrator must select one department from the departments popup list to associate with this attribute. The list shows all of this administrator's departments. (See Departments.)

    A global administrator can leave this field set to the default, which sets the attribute as global (belonging to no departments). A global administrator can also select a department for this attribute.

    Name

    yes

    Type a unique attribute name. For example, to create an attribute for mortgage insurance, type mortgage.

    Description

    no

    Enter a maximum of 255 characters to describe the attribute.

    See Native Character Sets.

    Type

    yes

    Select the type: Boolean or Proficiency.

    Default

    yes

    Select the default (True or False for Boolean, or a number from 1 to 10 for Proficiency).

    Step 4   Click Save.

    Skill Groups or Precision Queues?

    Should you use skill groups or precision queues for the routing needs of your organization? This section distinguishes the two methods.

    Use a Skill Group

    A skill group represents a competency or responsibility. For example, it could be a predefined collection of traits, such as salespeople who are in charge of selling to England. The skill group could be called "English sales". If you wanted to divide the agents in this group into two types of proficiencies (perhaps based on experience), you would need to set up two separate skill groups; for example, English Sales 1 and English Sales 2. You would then associate an agent with one of them, based on the agent's proficiency. Do this by accessing the skill group and locating the agent that you want to add to it (or add that skill group to the agent). To summarize, creating a skill group involves first building a concept of what combinations of traits you want for each agent, like English Sales 2.

    Use a Precision Queue

    In contrast to skill groups, a precision queue breaks down attribute definitions to form a collection of agents at an attribute level. The agents that match the attribute level of the precision queue become associated with that precision queue.

    With precision queues, the preceding English sales example involves defining the attributes English and Sales, and associating agents that have those traits to them. The precision queue English Sales would dynamically map all those agents that had those traits to the precision queue. In addition, you can define more complex proficiency attributes to associate with those agents. This would allow you to build, in a single precision queue, multiple proficiency searches like English language proficiency 10 and sales proficiency 5.

    To break down the precision queue example into skill groups, you would need to set up two separate skill groups: English language proficiency 10 and sales proficiency 5. With precision queues, you can refine agents by attributes. With skill groups, you define a skill group and then assign agents to it.

    Decide on Skill Groups or a Precision Queue

    Precision routing enhances and can replace traditional routing. Traditional routing looks at all of the skill groups to which an agent belongs and defines the hierarchy of skills to map business needs. However, traditional routing is restricted by its single-dimensional nature.

    Precision routing provides multidimensional routing with simple configuration, scripting, and reporting. Agents are represented through multiple attributes with proficiencies so that the capabilities of each agent are accurately exposed, bringing more value to the business.

    If your routing needs are not too complex, consider using one or two skill groups. However, if you want to conduct a search involving as many as ten different proficiency levels in one easily managed queue, use precision queues.

    Precision Queues

    Precision routing offers a multidimensional alternative to skill group routing: using Unified CCE scripting, you can dynamically map the precision queues to direct a call to the agent who best matches the caller's precise needs. Precision queues are the key components of precision routing.

    To configure Precision Routing, you must do the following:

    1. Create attributes. Attributes are characteristics that can be assigned a True | False value or a Proficiency rating from 1 to 10.
    2. Assign attributes to agents.
    3. Create precision queues.
    4. Create routing scripts.

    There is no need to add an agent to a precision queue; agents become members of precision queues automatically based on their attributes. If a precision queue requires an agent who lives in Boston, who speaks fluent Spanish, and who is proficient in troubleshooting a specific piece of equipment, an agent with the attributes Boston = True, Spanish = True, and Repair = 10 is automatically part of the precision queue. A Spanish caller in Boston who needs help with equipment is routed to that agent.

    A precision queue includes:

    • Terms: A term compares an attribute against a value. For example, you can create the following term: Spanish == 10. The term of the attribute is the highest proficiency in Spanish. Each precision queue can have multiple attributes, and these attributes can be used in multiple terms. For example, to select an agent with a Spanish proficiency value between 5 and 10, you would create one term for Spanish > 5 and another for Spanish < 10.
    • Expressions: An expression is a collection of one or more terms. The terms in an expression must share the same operator—they must all be AND or must all be OR relationships.

    • Steps: A precision queue step is a time-based routing point within the precision queue. A step is a collection of one or more expressions. A step may also include wait time and a Consider If formula. Use wait time to assign a maximum amount of time to wait for an available agent. Use a Consider If formula to evaluate the step against predefined criteria, for example, another queue.

    Navigate to Unified CCE Administration Manage > Agent > Precision Queues to configure precision queues.

    Depending on their role and the departments they administer, Administrators have full permission to configure precision queues. Supervisors have display-only access to the Precision Queues tool. Global supervisors can see all precision queues. Departmental supervisors can see global precision queues and precision queues in their department.

    When you add or modify precision queues associated with a large number of agents, the system avoids potential overload conditions by updating the agent associations as system resources allow. Precision queue updates may be rejected if the system is too busy.

    Add and Maintain Precision Queues

    Before You Begin

    This procedure explains how to create a precision queue. For information on maintaining precision queues, see Update Objects and Delete Objects.

    Before you can create precision queues, you must create attributes (see Add and Maintain Attributes).

    Procedure
      Step 1   Navigate to Unified CCE Administration Manage > Agent > Precision Queues.

      This opens a List of Precision Queues window showing all precision queues that are currently configured.

      Step 2   Click New to open the New Precision Queue window. Complete the fields.
      Name Required? Description

      Department

      yes (for department administrators only)

      A departmental administrator must select one department from the department popup list to associate with this precision queue. The list shows all of this administrator's departments. (See Departments.)

      A global administrator can leave this field set to the default, which establishes the precision queue as global (belonging to no departments). A global administrator can also select a department for this precision queue.

      When an administrator selects a department for the precision queue, the popup lists for attributes and bucket intervals show global objects and objects in that department.

      When an administrator changes the precision queue department, selections for bucket intervals and attributes are cleared if the selections do not belong to the new department or the global department.

      Description

      no

      Enter up to 255 characters to describe the precision queue.

      See Native Character Sets.

      Service Level Type

      yes

      Select the service level type used for reporting on your service level agreement.

      Service level type indicates how calls that are abandoned before the service level threshold affect the service level calculation.

      • Ignore Abandoned Calls (the default): Select this option if you want to exclude abandoned calls from the service level calculation.
      • Abandoned Calls have Negative Impact: Select this option if you want only those calls that are answered within the service level threshold time to be counted as treated calls. The service level is negatively affected by calls that abandon within the service level threshold time.
      • Abandoned Calls have Positive Impact: Select this option if you consider a call that is abandoned within the service level threshold time as a treated call. With this configuration, abandoned calls have a positive impact on the service level.

      Service Level Threshold

      yes

      Enter the time in seconds that calls are to be answered based on your service level agreement, from 0 to   2,147,483,647.

      The time that you enter in this field is used to report on service level agreements and does not affect how long a call remains in a precision queue. The length of time a call remains in a step is determined by the wait time for each individual step.

      Agent Order

      yes

      Select an option to determine which agents receive calls from this queue.

      The ordering of agents does not dictate the agents who are selected into a Precision Queue step. Agents are included or excluded based on the conditions specified for the step.

      • Longest Available Agent (the default): The default method of agent ordering for a precision queue. The call is delivered to the agent who has been in the available (or ready) state the longest.
      • Most Skilled Agent: The call is delivered to the agent who has the highest competency sum from all the attributes pertinent to the Precision Queue step. In an agent-rich environment, this can mean that more competent agents would be utilized more than less competent agents.
      • Least Skilled Agent: The call is delivered to the agent who has the lowest competency sum from all the attributes pertinent to the Precision Queue step.

      Bucket Intervals

      no

      Select the bucket interval whose bounds are to be used to measure the time slot in which calls are answered. The field defaults to the system default (see System Settings for Call Reporting ).

      To select a different bucket interval:
      1. Click the magnifying glass icon to display Select Bucket Intervals.
      2. Click a link to make a selection and close the list.

      Click the x icon to clear the selection.

      Step 3   Click the numbered Step Builder link (Step 1, Step 2, and so on) to open the Step Builder popup window.
      Step 4   When you have finished adding, click Save.

      Build Precision Queue Steps

      Every precision queue must have a step, and every step must have an Expression. An Expression is a collection of attribute terms.

      Procedure
        Step 1   Enter all required fields for the new precision queue.
        Step 2   Click the numbered step link in the Steps panel (Step 1, Step 2, and so on).

        This opens a step number window.

        Step 3   Build the first step as follows.
        1. Click the magnifying glass icon to the right of the Select Attribute field in the Expression 1 panel.
        2. Select an attribute from the list.
        3. Use the two Select fields to establish the terms of the attribute. Click the first Select field to choose an operator.
          • For Boolean attributes, choices are the operators for Equal and Not Equal.
          • For Proficiency attributes, choices are the operators for True, False, Less Than, Less Than or Equal To, Greater Than, and Greater Than or Equal To.
        4. Click the second Select field to choose a value.
          • For Boolean attributes, values are True and False.
          • For Proficiency attributes, values are numbers from 1 to 10.

          Your selection creates an attribute term for the Expression.

        Step 4   To add a second attribute to the first Expression, click Add Attribute in the Expression 1 row.
        1. Select AND or OR to establish the relationship between the first and second attributes.

        2. Repeat steps 3b, 3c, and 3d.
        Step 5   Continue to add attributes to Expression 1.

        All attributes within an expression must be joined by the same logical operator. They must all be ANDs, or they must all be ORs.

        Step 6   To add a second Expression, click the Add Attribute drop-down in the Expression 1 row and select Add Expression.
        Step 7   Select AND or OR to establish the relationship between the first and second Expressions.
        Step 8   Add attributes to Expression 2.
        Step 9   Continue to add Expressions as needed.

        In this example, a Spanish caller located in the Boston area needs an onsite visit from a technician to repair his ServerXYZ. An ideal agent should be fluent in Spanish and have the highest proficiency in ServerXYZ. This can be seen in Expression 1. Expression 2 allows us to specify that the selected agent must also be from either Boston or the New England area.

        Step 10   When you have completed the step, click OK to add it to the precision queue.
        Step 11   To build the next step, click the numbered step link in the Steps panel (Step 1).

        Each successive step is prepopulated with the Expressions and attributes of its predecessor. Decrease the attribute qualifications and competencies in successive steps to lower the bar such that the pool of acceptable agents increases.

        Step 12   When you have created all steps, you can open any step except the last and enter values in the Consider if and Wait for fields.
        • Consider if is a formula that evaluates a call within a step against additional criteria. (See Consider If Formula for Precision Queue for more information about Consider If.)
        • Wait for is a value in seconds to wait for an available agent. A call will queue at a particular step and wait for an available agent matching that step criteria until the number of seconds specified. A blank wait time indicates that the call will proceed immediately to the next step if no available agents match the step criteria. Wait time defaults to 0 and can take a value up to 2147483647.

        Consider If Formula for Precision Queue

        If you are not on the last step of the precision queue, then you can enter a Consider If formula for that step. A Consider If formula evaluates a call (within a step) against additional criteria. Each time a call reaches a step with a Consider If expression, the expression is evaluated. If the value for the expression returns as true, the call is considered for the step. If the value returns as false, the call moves to the next step. If no expression is provided for a step, the step is always considered for calls.

        To add a Consider If formula, type the formula into the Consider If box. Alternatively, you can use the Script Editor to build the formula and then copy and paste it into the Consider If box. Objects used in Consider If formulas are case-sensitive. All Consider If formulas that you add to a precision queue must be valid. If you add an invalid formula, you cannot save the precision queue. To ensure that the formula is valid, use Script Editor to build and validate the formula.

        Only the following scripting objects are valid in a Consider If formula:
        • Call
        • PQ
        • Skillgroup
        • ECC
        • PQ Step
        • Call Type
        • Custom Functions (You can create custom functions in Script Editor.)

        It is possible that a valid Consider If formula can become invalid. For example, if you delete an object used in the formula after you create or update the precision queue, the formula is no longer valid.

        Consider If Formula Examples

        • PQ.PQ1.LoggedOn > 1--Evaluates whether there is more than one agent logged in to this queue.
        • CallType.CallType1.CallsRoutedToday > 100--Evaluates whether more than 100 calls of this call type were routed today.
        • PQStep.PQ1.1.RouterAgentsLoggedIn > 1--Evaluates whether there is more than one router agent logged in to this queue for Step 1.
        • CustomFunction(Call.PeripheralVariable1) > 10--Evaluates whether this formula using a custom function returns a value greater than 10.

        Precision Queue Call Flow Example

        At a high level, consider a 5-step precision queue with a Consider If formula for Caller is Premium Member attached to the Step 1:

        • Step 1 - Attribute: Skill > 8 - Consider If: Caller is Premium Member
        • Step 2 - Attribute: Skill > 6
        • Step 3 - Attribute: Skill > 4
        • Step 4 - Attribute: Skill > 3
        • Step 5 - Attribute: Skill >= 1

        Caller John, who is not a premium customer, calls 1-800-repairs. John's call is routed to this precision queue.

        • Since John is not a premium customer, he is immediately routed out of Step 1 (because of the Consider If on Step 1) and into Step 2 where he waits for his call to be answered.
        • After the Step 2 wait time has expired, John's call moves to Step 3 to wait for an agent.
        • After the Step 3 wait time has expired, John's call moves to Step 4 to wait for an agent.
        • When it arrives at Step 5, John's call will wait indefinitely for an available agent. This step cannot be avoided by any call because there is no routing logic past this.

        The overarching idea is that customer will use each successive step to expand the pool of available agents. Eventually, when you reach the "last" step (the step with the highest number), the call is waiting in a potentially very large pool of agents. With each extra step, the chances of the call being handled increase. This also puts the most valuable and skilled agents in the earlier precision queue steps. Calls come to them first before moving on the less appropriate agents in later steps.

        Skill Groups

        A skill group is a collection of agents who share a common set of competencies that equip them to handle the same types of requests. Some examples of skill groups are a collection of agents who speak a specific language or who can assist callers with billing questions.

        An agent can be a member of multiple skill groups. Each skill group is associated with a specific media routing domain (MRD) such as voice, chat, or email.

        An agent's skill group membership can determine the types of contacts that are routed to that agent. For example, if an agent is a member of a skill group that is set up for the Cisco_Voice routing domain only, then that agent is a voice agent for that skill group. If an agent is a member of a skill group that is set up for a nonvoice routing domain, then that agent is a multichannel agent for that skill group.

        Use Cisco Unified Intelligence Center reports to view agent activity in skill groups, to monitor call distribution among skill groups, or to see how one skill group is performing compared with others.

        Navigate to Unified CCE Administration Manage > Agent > Skill Groups to configure skill groups.

        Administrators have full permission to configure skill groups. Supervisors can see skill groups but cannot add or delete skill groups. Global supervisors see all skill groups. Departmental supervisors see global precision queues and precision queues in their department. Supervisors have permission to add and remove their supervised agents on the Skill Groups Members tab.

        Add and Maintain Skill Groups

        This procedure explains how to add a skill group. For information on maintaining skill groups, see Update Objects and Delete Objects. Once you have created skill groups, you can edit skill group membership for multiple agents at once (see Edit Skill Group Membership for Multiple Agents).

        Procedure
          Step 1   Navigate to Unified CCE Administration Manage > Agent > Skill Groups.
          Step 2   Click New to open the New Skill Group window.

          This window has two tabs: General and Members. You can complete the tabs in any order, but you cannot save the skill group until you have entered all required fields on the General tab.

          Step 3   Complete the fields on the General tab:
          Field Required? Description

          Department

          yes (for department administrators only)

          A departmental administrator must select one department from the department popup list to associate with this skill group. The list shows all of this administrator's departments. (See Departments.)

          A global administrator can leave this field set to the default, which establishes the skill group as global (belonging to no departments). A global administrator can also select a department for this skill group.

          When an administrator selects a department for the skill group, the popup lists for agents and bucket intervals show global objects and objects in that department.

          When an administrator changes the skill group department, selections for bucket intervals and agents are cleared if the selections do not belong to the new department or the global department.

          Name

          yes

          Enter a name using up to 32 alphanumeric characters.

          Description

          no

          Enter up to 255 characters to describe the skill group. See Native Character Sets.

          Media Routing Domain

          yes

          MRDs are Unified CCE entities that organize how requests for media are routed. The system routes calls to skill groups that are associated with a particular communication medium; for example, voice or email. This field defaults to Cisco_Voice.

          To select a different Media Routing Domain:
          1. Click the magnifying glass icon to display Select Media Routing Domain . Selections are all MRDs that have been created in Unified CCE Configuration Manager.
          2. Click a row to make a selection and close the list.

          Click the x icon to clear the selection.

          Bucket Intervals

          no

          Select the bucket interval whose bounds are to be used to measure the time slot in which calls are answered. The field defaults to the system default, see System Settings for Call Reporting .

          To select a different bucket interval:
          1. Click the magnifying glass icon to display Select Bucket Intervals.
          2. Click a row to make a selection and close the list.

          Click the x icon to clear the selection.

          Service Level Threshold

          no

          Enter a value in seconds that you set as a goal for connecting a call with an agent. The field defaults to the threshold configured in Unified CCE Configuration Manager for this Media Routing Domain.

          Leave this field blank to use the service level threshold value for the Media Routing Domain.

          Enter a value of 0 seconds if you do not want a service level event to be set for the calls. These calls are not treated as service-level calls.

          Service Level Type

          Select a service level type.

          Service level type indicates how calls that are abandoned before the service level threshold affect the service level calculation.

          • Use Media Routing Domain Value (the default): Select this option to use the value that is currently defined for the MRD.
          • Ignore Abandoned Calls: Select this option if you want abandoned calls to be excluded from the service level calculation.
          • Abandoned Calls have Negative Impact: Select this if you want only calls that are answered within the service level threshold time as to be counted as treated calls. The service level is negatively affected by calls that abandon within the service level time.
          • Abandoned Calls have Positive Impact: Select this if you consider a call abandoned within the service level threshold time as a treated call. With this configuration, abandoned calls have a positive impact on the service level.
          Step 4   Complete the Members tab:

          This tab shows the list of agents for this skill group.

          1. Click Add to open Add Agents.
          2. Click the agents you want to add to this skill group.
          3. Close Add Agents. The agents you chose appear on the List of Agents.
          4. Click Save on this tab to return to the List window, where a message confirms the successful creation of the skill group.