Admin Portal – Manage Auto Attendants

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What you need to know:

To learn how to modify the Time Schedule, please visit the Time Schedules Article.

Auto Attendants

Auto Attendants are automated greetings providing callers with information and dial menu options.  An Auto Attendant routes calls to various destinations, including employees within your company, groups of employees, voicemail, other outside numbers or informational announcements. An Auto Attendant can be used for applications such as main number incoming calls, special closure greetings,  departmental greetings, directory of extensions, company information and more. Each Auto Attendant is assigned a unique number for identification and setup purposes.

The Auto Attendant has two primary modes – Business Hours and After Hours. In addition to the primary modes, an administrator can create special closure Auto Attendants, as in the case of holidays, via the scheduling option. Each Auto Attendant allows administrators to set up options 1 – 9, #, and * to present callers with options from which to select. To route calls to additional Auto Attendants, or branch of options,  additional Auto Attendants must be assigned to your account. To add Auto Attendants to your account, please contact your account manager.

To route calls based on the time of day (e.g. after hours versus business hours), you must configure an Auto Attendant schedule. You can also configure a company holiday schedule to identify the dates of holidays your company recognizes. On designated dates, the special closure or holiday greeting and menu options are played to callers.

To run the same greeting at all times of the day, you do not need to create and assign a time schedule to your Auto Attendant.

If you require a unique message, greetings can be uploaded as a .wav file or recorded from the Voice Portal. To learn how to modify the time schedule, visit the Time Schedules guide.

Setting Up the Auto Attendant Profile

  1. Log in to the admin portal.
  2. Select Advanced Services in the left-hand navigation.
  3. Select Auto Attendants.
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  5. Find the Auto Attendant you want to configure and select the Actions drop-down menu.
  6. Select Edit Service.
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  8. On the Edit Auto Attendant page you can create a name that reflects the purpose of this specific auto attendant (e.g. Main Line Auto Attendant). Modify the Extension assigned to the Auto Attendant, if applicable, and you can change the phone number select in the Phone Number field.
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  10. Select Edit Call Forwarding to forward your Auto Attendant to a different phone number.
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  12. Then select one of the following options:
    • Do Not Forward – If selected, will not forward calls to another number.
    • Call Forwarding Always – If selected, will forward calls to the number you indicate.
    • Call Forwarding Selective – If selected, will forward calls to a specified number at specified times.
      • When Call Forwarding Selective is enabled, you will be routed to the Call Forwarding Selective Details page to indicate;
        1. Which time and holiday schedule you would like to use.
        2. Which number to forward to during those schedules.
        3. And if you would only like calls from specific numbers to be forwarded to the forward to number you indicate.
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  14. Another option is Alternate Numbers. You can assign multiple phone numbers or extensions to an Auto Attendant. Each number will reach the same greeting and each menu will function identically to the main number. The alternate numbers option enables you to have up to ten (10) phone numbers ring in to the Auto Attendant. Find the number you would like to add as an Alternate Number in the lookup field. Then select Save to save your changes.
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  16. Next, assign a Time Schedule to the auto attendant by selecting the Schedule tab. The selected time schedule determines when callers will hear your greetings during business hours and holiday hours.
  17. Note: The options here are configured in Scheduling. To learn more about Time Schedules, see the Time Schedules guide.

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  18. On the Language tab, you can configure the language used in the audio announcements.
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Modifying the Dialing Menu for Business Hours and/or After Hours

On the Menu tab, select your dialing menu options for the business hours and/or after hours dialing menu. This determines which action the Auto Attendant will take when an incoming caller chooses a particular number or symbol on the keypad.

  1. Choose to configure for either the Enterprise or the Site.
    • Enterprise – Callers who reach the Auto Attendant and choose to dial by name or extension can reach any user at any location within the entire company. Note: Users with Privacy enabled may not be listed in the name or extension directory or may not be dialed.
    • Site – Callers who reach the Auto Attendant and choose to dial by name or extension can reach any user located at the specific site associated with this Auto Attendant.
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  3. Configure the action for the keypad numbers by selecting one of the following from the drop-down list.

    Note: The Auto Attendant timeout is set by default to transfer to the operator after 10 seconds of no input. This is not configurable. This requires one of the menu keys to be configured as “Transfer to the Operator” where the destination telephone number or extension can be configured.

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    • Not Used: This is the default when an action has not been selected for that digit or character.
    • Transfer Externally with Prompt: This action routes callers to a phone number that is not a User or Extension within the company.  For example: A third-party answering service or corporate call center.
    • Transfer Externally without Prompt: This action routes callers to a phone number that is not a User or Extension within the company.  For example: A third-party answering service or corporate call center.
    • Transfer to Operator – External: This will redirect callers to a configured operator, who will receive all calls that “time out” when a caller does not choose an option from the Auto Attendant.  You will enter the phone number to which to route callers here.
    • Transfer to Operator – Internal: This will redirect callers to a configured operator, who will receive all calls that “time out” when a caller does not choose an option from the Auto Attendant.  You can select from existing phone numbers in the system.
    • Transfer to Voicemail: This selection places callers directly into the Voicemail box of the Extension entered in the “Transfer To” Field.  Note: This option will only transfer to an Extension Voicemail.
    • Transfer to Internal Number with Prompt: This will route callers to a selected User’s extension or phone number within the company. As soon as the caller chooses this option, a prompt will play before the transfer is placed.  It will include the User’s name as recorded in the Voicemail box.
    • Transfer to Internal Number without Prompt: This will route callers to a selected User’s extension or phone number within the company.   This option will route the caller as soon it is selected, without playing a prompt.
    • Transfer to Extension with Prompt: Callers are sent to a pre-configured User Extension. As soon as the caller chooses this option, a prompt will play before the transfer is placed.  It will include the User’s name as recorded in the Voicemail box.
    • Transfer to Extension without Prompt: Callers are sent to a pre-configured User Extension. This option will route the caller as soon as it is selected, without playing a prompt.
    • Dial by Name: This action enables callers to dial by recipient name, using the letters on the dialpad.
    • Dial by Extension: This action allows callers to dial by recipient Extension, using the numbers on the dialpad.
    • Repeat Menu: If selected, this action will repeat the Greeting and Menu options.
    • Exit Menu: This action allows callers to exit the menu system.  This will terminate the call.

Auto Attendant Greetings

Auto Attendant Greetings are used to present callers with options to dial from the Auto Attendant.  These greetings can be customized and uploaded or recorded from the Voice Portal. To modify the greeting for Auto Attendants, follow these steps:

  1. Select the Greetings tab on the Edit Auto Attendant page.
  2. By default, the system default greeting is assigned. Note: The default greeting states the following – “Welcome. Your call is being answered by an automated attendant. If you know your party’s extension, Press one (1). To use our automated dial-by-name directory, Press two (2). If you would like to speak to an operator, Press zero (0). Thank you for calling,”
  3. If you would like to add a customized greeting, choose Custom.
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Auto Attendant Reports

An Auto Attendant report shows the complete utilization totals for the Auto Attendant, including Answered calls, Busy calls, Not Answered calls and Duration of Calls. To pull a report, follow these steps:

  1. Select the Reporting tab on the Edit Auto Attendant page.
  2. Select the date range you would like to pull the report on.
  3. Select Run Report.
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