The call forwarding rules feature allows you to configure what 3CX Phone System should do with an incoming call that you are unable to take. Depending on your current status, the callers caller ID and the time, you can forward calls to voice mail, to another extension or your mobile. You can set specific call forwarding rules based on your current status. For example, if you are unable to take a call whilst your status is ‘Available’, you can forward the call to voice mail, whilst if your status is set to ‘Out of Office’ you could forward it to your mobile. Call forwarding needs to be configured for each status and the options available can differ. It is possible to have your status set to out of office and back to available based on your working hours. If your office hours are different from the general office hours, you can configure this in the ‘Extension Details’ tab.
Call Forwarding when Available
If your status is set to available, calls can be treated differently based on whether you’re on the phone or simply unable to answer the call (no answer).
To configure what 3CX should do when you are unable to answer the call:
- First you need to define what constitutes ‘No Answer’. At the top, specify the time in seconds that you want the system to wait before it considers the call unanswered.
- Now select one of the following options:
- Send call to Voice Mail (of that extension).
- Send call to my mobile number.
- Send call to another extension.
- Send call to an external number or Skype ID.
- Disconnect Call.
You can define different behaviour for internal calls if you wish. In addition, you can have 3CX Phone System ring your mobile simultaneously.
Phone is Busy
In the case of your phone being busy, you have the same options as above, however you need to decide whether you want to be able to receive a second call. If you want to take a second call when you are already on the phone, you will need to tick the “I want to be able to accept more then 1 call at the same time” option. Note that your phone needs to be able to support more then 1 call, and that in this case your ‘Phone is Busy’ options will rarely kick in. You can define different behavior for internal calls if you wish.
Call Forwarding when Away
If your status is set to away, calls will be forwarded based on whether they are internal or external. This option will override any other rules and forward ALL calls to the configured destination. To configure it:
- Select one of the following options for both internal and external calls:
- Send calls to your Voice Mail.
- Send calls to your mobile.
- Send calls to another extension.
- Send calls to an external number using 302 diversion header – this an advanced option that requires a direct DID. Check with administrator.
- An external number or Skype ID (requires Skype Connect Service).
- If you selected forwarding to an external number, you can specify whether you wish to use the option ‘Offer option to confirm to accept’ feature. This allows you to reject the call and send it ‘back’ to the company voice mail system. This avoids the call being sent to your mobile voice mailbox. How this works:
- 3CX Phone System informs the caller “Please hold while we locate” “John” (user’s ID message) and puts the caller on hold (hold music).
- 3CX now calls the specified external number and announces to you “You have a call from “0123456789″ “Press 1 to take call, press 2 or hang-up to send to voicemail”. If you don’t pick up within 30 seconds it goes to voicemail.
- You can also decide whether you want calls received outside of the company office hours to be redirected as well. If you do not select this option, calls outside office hours will be forwarded to voice mail.
- You can have 3CX Phone System automatically set your status to away at particular times (for example lunch break) and optionally log you out of the queues as well.
- In addition, you can have 3CX Phone System ring your mobile simultaneously.
Call Forwarding when Out Of Office
The Out Of Office status is identical to the away setting, however typically you would want calls to be treated differently depending on whether you are away (i.e. at a meeting) or out of the office (working from home for example).
Call Forwarding for Custom #1 and Custom #2 Status
In addition to the available, away and out of office statuses, 3CX has two additional statuses that can be used. The Custom #1 status call forwarding is identical to the available status, and the Custom #2 status call forwarding is identical to the away status. The additional statuses are there so that you can quickly switch to a status that should behave differently from the standard statuses.
It is possible to configure a number of exceptions to the call forwarding rules. For example, you could configure a rule so that a call of an important customer will always be forwarded to your mobile, independent of the global setting. To do this:
- Go to the ‘Exceptions’ tab and click ‘Add Rule’
- Enter the Caller ID of the person in question.
- Now specify whether this rule will be applied during or outside office hours, or even specific hours.
- Specify where the call should be forwarded and click OK.
Note: There is a maximum of 15 call forwarding exceptions per extension.