Managing Agents’ Status in Queues
As part of the call center functionality 3CX has queues, with agents as members, to service calls coming into the queues. Queues distribute calls to agents depending on which queue the caller has called, and which agents are available in each individual queue. An agent can be a member of one or more queues. The PBX provides various ways of logging in and out of the queues.
This guide will demonstrate the various methods of logging in and out of queues in 3CX. The default state of agents and their membership in queues at the extension creation time is LOGGED OFF.
On this topic:
Global LogIn and LogOut
The global queue toggle will add an agent to all queues in operative mode or remove them from service. However, it will NOT override explicit queue logouts.
3CX client Q-Button
The “Q” button on the 3CX client is a toggle switch which logs agents in or out of queues.
When an agent is logged out of the queues, you will see the “Q” button greyed out as in the image below.
When an agent is logged in to the queues, you will see the “Q” button highlighted in white or blue (depending on the theme), as seen in the image below.
Desktop (Hardware) IP Phones do not provide a “Q” button to log in or out of the queues. There are two (2) methods a desktop IP Phone can log in or out of queues.
One of the methods used to log in/out is via the Queue BLF keys. The administrator can configure/provision a BLF key to log in to the queues and another key to log out of the queues.
If the agent’s phone has BLF keys, they can log in using the login BLF button, as shown in the image below. You will hear an audio confirmation that “This extension is logged into the queue”.
You can also log out from the queues, using the logout BLF button on the IP Phone, as shown in the image below. You will hear an audio confirmation that “This extension is logged out of the queue”.
The 3CX client for Windows also provides the BLF functionality, in addition to the “Q” button.
Press the 3 blue dots in the top, right hand corner of the 3CX client.
Select “Show BLF Side Panel”. This will now show the BLF panel on the side of the client. The BLF buttons configured on the extension, will now also show.
Some IP Phones do not have BLF keys. In this case, agents will need to use dial codes, which are provided on the PBX to log in and out of queues. The dial codes are defined in the 3CX Management Console and configured by the PBX Administrator.
- By default the dial code to log IN to a queue is *62
- By default the dial code to log OUT of a queue is *63
These can be modified by the PBX Administrator, so it is best to verify the dial codes with the Administrator before using these.
Automatically based on the Extension’s Profile Status
An agent can be automatically logged in or out of queues, depending on the extension’s profile status or even based on the time of day.
If the Administrator has enabled the option in the PBX Management Console, the agent's Queue status will change, depending on the Extension’s profile status. When the agent is “Available” the agent will be logged in to the Queues, as shown below.
When the agent chooses “Away” or “Do Not Disturb” the agent will be automatically logged out from the queues.
Automatically based on the time of day
The administrator can also configure an extension to change the extension’s profile status based on the time of day and with this as mentioned above the queue status will change accordingly. The extension can either follow the office hours of the PBX or follow specific office hours defined for the extension. The extension can also have specific break times.
- During Office Hours, the extension will be in the “Available” state
- During Out of Office Hours, the extensions will be in the “Do Not Disturb” state
- During the Break Times, the extension will be in the “Away” state
In this case, the extension will automatically change status during the day depending on the configured office hours and the agent will be logged in or out accordingly.
Access to the 3CX Management Console can be delegated to each individual user to manage his/her own extension or can be set by the system admin.
- Log in to the PBX, using the credentials of the extension.
- Select the extension and click “Status”
- Use the resulting dialog box to change the Queue Status using the relevant drop down box.
- The agent will now be logged in or out of the queues
Explicit (Selective) LogIn and LogOut
An agent can be a member of more than one queue and the agent can choose which queues they will be a member of. In this case the switchboard can be used to select which individual queues an agent will be logged in to.
The Switchboard View
When using the switchboard to login or logout from the Queues, this action is persistent. In the following screenshot, you will see all the agents logged into the queues.
Agent 100, Allen Smith, logs himself out from the “Support Queue”. He will need to right click on his name in the “Support Queue” and choose “Logout from queue”.
Allen Smith will now only receive calls from the “ICT Queue” but has stopped serving calls for the “Support Queue”.
This function requires a 3CX PRO edition.
Note: In case Allen Smith (Agent 100) logs globally out of queues in this state, using any of the methods described above (Q Button, BLF Keys, Dial Codes or the Management Console) he will only log back in queues he has chosen to be logged in to but does not log in to the queue he opted out explicit from!
When using the new 3CX Web Client, you can log in and out of individual queues in the following way.
- Go to the “Switchboard” option
- Select one of the queues which are available.
- Click on the agent's name to login or logout of this particular queue.
A larger view of the Agent names list is shown below
On behalf LogIn and LogOut
The explicit login and logout can also be done on behalf of the agent, by the assigned queue manager(s). Agents who are not queue managers can only log themselves in and out of queues. This function requires a 3CX PRO edition.