NextOS 3.0: How to add a Call Group (Hunt Group)
To group users’ extensions together into departments or specific groups, you can create Call Groups. After you create your Call Groups, we strongly suggest testing them to ensure they are routing correctly.
- For Administrators, log in to the NextOS 3.0 portal by visiting www.nextiva.com and clicking on the customer Login found at the top right.
- Log in to the NextOS 3.0 portal with your login credentials.
- From the main dashboard, click Call groups in the Advanced routing tile (Figure 1-1).
Figure 1-1 Call Groups
- Click the Create call groups link on the left side of the screen (Figure 1-2).
Figure 1-2 Create Call Group
- Enter your information in the fields on the Call group profile screen, as indicated below (Figure 1-3):
- Call group name: a descriptive name for the call group.
- Location: the location that this call group belongs to.
- Caller ID first and Caller ID last: the caller ID that will show on the users’ phones when a call comes in through the call group. This is in addition to the caller ID of the originating party. This is commonly used to let the user know what number was dialed, or what option was selected from the auto attendant. Typical examples include Support Call or Sales Call.
- Phone number: the phone number that rings directly to this call group. This is optional.
- Extension: the extension number of the call group. This is required.
- Location: the location that this call group belongs to.
- Call distribution policy: this is the ring pattern the call group will follow.. Options include:
- Circular (one at a time with a looping order, when the user at the top of the list takes a call he’s moved to the bottom; A-B-C-D, then B-C-D-A, then C-D-A-B, etc)
- Regular (most common; rings one phone at a time in a set order; A-B-C, A-B-C)
- Simultaneous (rings every phone in the call group at the same time)
- Uniform (whoever has been idle the longest)
- Weighted (specifies a percentage for each user; allows your strongest employees take the most calls)
Figure 1-3 Call Group Details
- Select which users will be a part of this call group by clicking the plus sign next to their name below Available users. Alternatively, the plus sign next to the All option adds all users to this call group (Figure 1-4). After doing so, the users will appear in the Selected Users box to the right.
Figure 1-4 Available Users Box
- Click the Advanced Settings link toward the bottom of the screen to show the advanced settings (Figure 1-5).
Figure 1-5 Advanced Settings
- Select one or more Busy option from the drop-down list (Figure 1-6).
- Allow call waiting: allows the users in the call group to take more than one call at a time through the call group. This does not affect their ability to take a second call if the user’s direct number is dialed.
- Allow members to control group busy: allows the users in the call group to use feature access codes to turn call forwarding on or off for the call group using #51 and #52. This is typically setup in conjunction with Call forward busy to control where the call is forwarded to.
- Enable group busy: turns call forwarding on or off for the call group, rather than using #51 and #52 (discussed above).
- Apply group busy when call ends: makes the hunt group busy whenever a call ends.
Figure 1-6 Busy Options
- Fill in the rest of the fields as indicated below (Figure 1-7):
- Department: the department that the call group is assigned to. Departments are used to organize an account. Examples include Accounting, Sales, Support, etc. Departments will be discussed more in a later release.
- Skip to next agent after 1 rings: controls how long a user has to pick up the phone before the call routes to another user. This setting only applies if simultaneous ring is not in use, and there is more than one user in the call group. We suggest keeping this number to 6 or fewer rings.
- Forward call after _ seconds, and forward to: controls the total time the call rings through the call group. This is typically used to send calls to voicemail after a certain number of seconds (one ring is approximately 5 seconds), but can also be used to forward calls to an auto attendant or an external number.
- Enable call forwarding not reachable, and forward to: forwards calls to voicemail, an auto attendant, or an external number in the event that the phones in the call group are offline (not registered). This only applies if ALL phones in the call group are offline.
- Make call group busy when all available agents are not reachable: sends the call to the call group voicemail box in the event that the phones in the call group are offline (not registered). By default, this will go to the call group voicemail box, but this can be changed by using the Call forwarding busy feature on the call group. This only applies if ALL phones in the call group are offline.
Figure 1-7 Advanced Call Routing
- To prevent the caller ID from being modified when calls route through the call group, select the User’s caller ID radio button at the bottom of the screen, and uncheck the Include call group in caller ID check box (Figure 1-8).
Figure 1-8 Caller ID
- Click the green Save button at the bottom of the screen. A pop-up message will appear confirming that the new call group has been created (Figure 1-9).
Figure 1-9 Confirmation Page
NextOS 2.0: How to add a Call Group (Hunt Group)
Hunt Groups allow you to have incoming calls ring to multiple employees on your account. The feature attempts to “hunt” for an available employee. It can be set up to ring all phones at the same time or in a specific order. This feature is perfect for a company who needs multiple people to answer phone calls. Or you can set up Hunt Groups to search for an available employee by creating Hunt Groups that roll over to other users if, for example, the receptionist is busy.
How to set up Hunt Groups from the Nextiva Portal:
- Log in to the NextOS Portal by going to www.nextiva.com and selecting Customer Login from the top right corner. Enter your login credentials and click Sign in. Select Sites & Employees then click on Login under the Admin Login column.
- On the left-hand side of the screen, select Services and then click Hunt Group under Basic Services. On this page, select Add. Next, fill in all of the fields, including the Hunt Group ID, a distinct name for the Hunt Group (helpful if you have more than one set up), and the first and last name for the calling line ID. Make sure you click the box next to “Allow Call Waiting on agents”, if applicable.
- The next section to set up is called Group Policy, which is the ring pattern this Hunt Group will follow. In most cases, you will want to set your Hunt Group to ring Regular, which rings one phone at a time in a set order (A-B-C, A-B-C). Choose Circular if you’d like to make sure your employees are all offered the same opportunity to answer calls (A-B-C-D, then B-C-D-A, then C-D-A-B, etc). Another popular option is Simultaneous, which rings every phone in the Hunt Group at the same time. Uniform Hunt Groups will first ring the phone that has been idle longest. This set up will try to spread calls to employees equally. The last option, Weighted Call Distribution allows you to design your ring pattern so that your strongest employees take the most calls.
- The next section allows you to set up No Answer rules. Here you can choose how long each phone will ring before it skips to the next employee in the Hunt Group (when using a rotating ring setup – not simultaneous). To enable this feature, click the check box next to “Skip to next agent” and enter the number of rings. Note: We suggest keeping the number of rings at six or fewer. The next check box lets you designate how long to wait before forwarding the call to another user on your account, or even an outside line. If a call comes in, for example, you can have it ring users in order and then, if unanswered after 60 seconds the caller would transfer to a cell phone, or voicemail, depending on your company’s needs. To enable this, check the box enter how many seconds you want it to ring in the office before forwarding. Note: On average a ring is 5 seconds. Then enter the phone number, voicemail box number or extension where calls will forward if the Hunt Group is unable to answer in the allotted time.
- The Not Reachable Settings box will allow your incoming Hunt Group phone call to forward out if all of the phones in the Hunt Group are not accessible by Nextiva (for example, you lose internet connection). To set this up, check the box next to “Enable Call Forwarding Not Reachable.” Then enter a 10-digit phone number (internal numbers or extensions are not recommended).
- Next, you will want to add at least one user to the Hunt Group. In the field “Enter Search Criteria,” click the Search button. You’ll be presented with a list of all employees on your site. To add users, highlight their name and click Add> to the right. Or, if you want everyone in your account included in the Hunt Group you can simply click Add All>>. To change the order in which your users will receive calls for a rotating call set up, highlight the user and click Move Up or Move Down. Once done, click OK at the bottom of the page.
- Once everything is set up to your liking, click OK to save. If you assign a 10 digit phone number or extension number to your Hunt Group, you can call and test the routing. To assign a number to your newly-created Hunt Group, click “Profile” from the menu on the left-hand side of the screen. You’ll see “Addresses” under Basic. Here, just create your extension number, or assign any available phone numbers on your account listed in the drop-down box.