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What is an ACD?

What is ACD - blog
May 22, 2018 / Evolve IP

Yes, an appearance by ACDC might do wonders for brand awareness and employee morale, but right now we’re talking about ACD. Any business that handles a large volume of calls could benefit from an automatic call distributor (ACD) dispersing incoming calls to the right parties. First, we’ll discuss what is an ACD. Then, we’ll outline some of the things you need to know about ACDs when you’re considering this service as part of your telecommunications solution.

What is an ACD?

Automatic Call Distribution is exactly what it says it is in its name — and so much more. Quite simply, the ACD processes many incoming calls simultaneously to distribute the callers among departments or call center representatives. Instead of getting a busy signal or going directly to voicemail, callers are more quickly connected to a live person. With the ACD putting callers through to the next available agent, the system should minimize the amount of time your callers spend waiting to be heard.

An ACD can become the backbone of your phone communications as it effectively streamlines call distribution according to your individual business’s needs.

Benefits of ACD

1. Boost customer satisfaction

Being able to intelligently route callers to the next available agent, helping them to avoid voicemail or busy signals, and reducing their hold time can enhance that caller’s overall impression of your business. Further, the ACD can recognize where a call is originating from and route callers accordingly. Thus, callers from Quebec in Canada could be programmed to route to French-speaking call agents.

Even in a one-person office, there can be advantages with the ACD letting the callers know they will be put through as soon as a person is available and offering information about where they stand in the call queue. Some call center solutions include a queue call back feature that also gives callers the option of avoiding waiting on the line by requesting a callback instead.


2. Better equip your employees

An ACD service offers the incoming caller options to select from, which can help with routing that call appropriately. At the same time, the ACD can be integrated with your telecommunications system to provide your employees with more information in advance of speaking to the caller. For instance, the telephone LCD might display to a call center representative which option the caller selected that had the ACD route them there.


3. Gain greater insights

The ACD service can offer your business access to detailed reports about incoming calls, abandoned calls, call waiting, and other call activities. These reports can help your business better understand incoming call traffic and identify trends that might influence hiring and training practices. Even marketing, for instance, could gain input from these records if it’s determined that a certain promotional campaign prompts an influx of incoming calls.


4. Prioritization is possible

Drawing on integrated databases and other business tools your ACD can be set up to identify VIP callers. For instance, many ACDs can integrate with your business’s CRM, social media, or live chat. Based on the information you pre-determine, the callers with the identified profile would be routed immediately to the appropriate department or agent, or put in the front of the queue of waiting callers.


5. Greater training opportunities

With the ACD offering call monitoring, call conferencing, call barging, and whisper coaching, it becomes easier for managers to coach and support call center agents. Call recording, too, can be beneficial in one-on-one sessions intended to improve future call interactions.


6. Offers a unified front

An ACD provides a seamless forward-facing response to your incoming callers. No matter where your employees are working, or how far-flung the locations, the caller will only know they called a phone number and connected to a business employee. This can make it easier for your business to be responsive to callers across the country, or even the globe, without compromising on customer service.

The efficacy of your ACD depends on your routing strategy. Evolve IP’s unified communication experts can help customize a call center solution to your company based on your unique business needs.


Common Call Distribution Methods

  • Linear — Calls are distributed to agents following a list, starting at the same agent each time.
  • Circular — Calls are distributed in order, but starting with next agent on the list after the last agent to receive a call.
  • Uniform — Call goes to the agent who has been idle longest.
  • Simultaneous — All agents are alerted to the call. The first agent to answer takes the call.
  • Weighted — Routes calls to available agents based on your configurations (e.g. a percentage assigned to each agent).
  • Conditional — Calls are routed based on time, date, or other scheduling factors.
Categories: Contact Center
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