One of the most significant problems callers face when contacting a business is long wait times — reinforcing their dread in making calls to businesses altogether. Your clients shouldn’t cringe when they have to call you; after all their time is valuable and your job is to make things simpler.

According to a survey conducted by PWM Reports of 2,500 consumers, over 60% believe that being on hold for more than a minute is too long. This is a powerful reason to make sure your customers aren’t hanging up before you get the chance to speak with them.

So… what exactly is Automatic Call Distribution?

Auto-route your incoming calls

The best way to describe ACD is an automated system that redirects calls to exactly where they need to go. This technology allows calls to quickly reach their destination, whether it be a specific department or agents within an inbound call center.

Let your customers get to you faster

An automated call distribution (ACD) system improves your callers’ overall experience by lowering wait times through a well-structured filtration system that directs calls efficiently. While ACD is not a well-known acronym in the business world, we have all experienced the benefits it offers in our everyday lives.

Optimize your call load

For call centers receiving thousands of calls per day, automatic call distribution is an undeniable central asset to the business. Not only does it make operations run more smoothly, it also prevents available agents from being overwhelmed.

Improve the wellness of your team

In the robust remote world today, it is more important than ever to monitor teams’ workloads and wellbeing in their task management. Employee ‘burnout’ is on the rise, and call center employees are no exception. According to a recent survey by Deloitte, 77% of 1,000 professionals admitted to experiencing workplace burnout. Automatic call distribution can help.

With these crucial points in mind, let’s take a look at this important piece of behind-the-scenes tech that enables businesses to run smarter and better. With Ringover’s solution, automated call distribution is a crucial piece to how we help your business thrive.

Wait, so what’s the difference between ACD and IVR?

You may have heard of IVR (Interactive Voice Response), but if you have not, don’t worry as most people have used it without knowing its proper name. IVR is simply a telephony solution that routes calls using number selections for prompts (press 1 for sales, press 2 for billing, and so on). Yes, we all know the exhilaration of using your touchpad to get to a real person.

Automated call distribution, on the other hand, works according to preset rules that automatically route calls to the right place. For example, with automated call distribution, you can redirect calls that you receive afterhours to a pre-recorded voicemail. Using this method, calls with certain country codes can be directed to the corresponding representatives in other languages and regions.

Advances in today’s cloud calling softwares allow both ACD and IVR to work together.

Don’t worry, you can enjoy the best of both worlds. Both ACD and IVR can work together in modern business phone solutions. With Ringover, we integrate both systems to work for you. You can specifically tailor your system to route calls efficiently and in the ways most beneficial to you and your customer. The best part: you save on hardware and configuration costs.

Read more about IVR: Interactive Voice Response: A thorough guide for any business

How does ACD really work?

In a real world scenario where ACD helps you in everyday life, imagine calling your satellite TV company for maintenance. Instead of submitting a contact form online (that often feels like it disappears into a black hole), or sending an email (which goes into an even larger black hole), you decide to pick up your phone and call the company right away. You’re looking for a human confirmation that your situation is going to be resolved, not the word of an automated robot.

Your call is like a train headed for an unknown destination. ACD serves as the directory for it to be put on the right track. Think of it as Grand Central Station in this scenario. Based on the criteria of your call, it will be sent to the corresponding coordinates. For example, if you’re calling from Chicago at 9 pm, you will be sent to a voicemail and if you’re calling from Mumbai, your call will be sent to someone who is familiar with that region and its language. Without the integral piece that ACD plays, no calls would be sent to their correct destination.

How can ACD be even more useful?

If you have high-priority clients calling during high call times, Automated Number Indication (ANI) allows you to identify these calls and send them to their account manager's direct line without further delay, or open the client's file right on the computer screen of the agent taking the call.

According to a recent survey, “Time Management in Sales”, sales reps spend an alarming 63.4% of their time on admin tasks (not selling!) The common issue in call centers is sales personnel spending valuable time transferring calls that involve billing or technical questions to the proper place. Dialed Number Identification Service (DNIS) eliminates this problem by routing calls to their proper department, saving time and money.

Common types of call distribution:

1. Fixed

Fixed routing is a traditional method often used that routes calls to a specific group based on skill set (language, technical expertise, etc.) in the same order every time. Incoming calls will ring each time to the first person in the group, and if their line is busy, to the next, and so on.

2. Round-robin

With Round-robin call distribution, calls are routed in a loop for more even distribution; in other words, only once the last agent has taken a call will the next incoming call go to the first agent on the list, restarting the cycle.

3. Lease active

Calls ring each time to the agent who has been idle the longest, so that no single agent receives more or fewer than his or her fair share of calls.

4. Time-based

Incoming calls ring in pre-set order to a group of agents having marked themselves as available for a given time period. For example, on Tuesday morning callers may be routed to Tom, Jenny, and Marcela in that order, while afternoon callers will be routed to Tom, Marcela and George, since Jenny will be busy running a training seminar, and George will not arrive until after lunch. Time-based routing is one of the most popular methods.

5. Simultaneous

Calls ring to all available agents at once, so the one who handles the call is simply the first to pick up each time.

6. Weighted

Calls are routed to agents according to a certain call volume percentage pre-assigned to each. For example, Sally, who is the most experienced in her group, will receive 60% of incoming calls, Bob will receive 30%, and Emma, who just started last week and is still learning, will handle 10%.

7. Value-based

Also known as "smart routing," this type of routing operates on a higher level of complexity and uses much more detailed information than the others. More geared toward profit generation than time-saving, it involves assessing callers based on such factors as demographics or past history with the company to determine if the caller might be a good candidate for an upgrade or more open to purchase additional products or services.

8. Data based

Similar to value-based routing, this routing uses data on a caller's current status. For example, even though a caller may have called the tech support number, the system may flag their overdue invoice or soon-to-expire membership and route them first to the department for payment processing or subscription renewals.

These are just a few of the call routing methods that exist today. Technology evolves as the needs and objectives of customers and consumers change, advancing some methods to being more widely used, and others not so much.

What can Ringover ACD do for your business?

No matter your size, ACD can boost your performance across all channels. Here’s how.

Shorter queue time is essential for a growing business (or any for that matter). Consumers are less and less willing to spend their time on hold and companies need to adapt to this. On top of that, customers can’t afford to waste time speaking with the wrong person or department. ACD ensures this doesn’t happen.

First impressions are fundamental. Make sure yours are flawless with Ringover using our problem-solving features:

Mobility/Flexibility: Seamless mobility is an integral part of new business growth and success. Your clients are increasingly on the move, so why shouldn’t you and your team be? Ringover puts all the features of a state-of-the-art corporate phone system at your fingertips whether you're travelling overseas, at home or in the office. With Ringover, you can provide the same professional intimacy and dedication of client attention as if you were in a non-virtual world.

Training/Coaching: Call whispering and intervention provides a mindful insight into your business and is a feature that should not be overlooked. With a better understanding of what areas your team needs development in, you can better train them to succeed and build the confidence they need to represent you in any situation, no matter how challenging. What is more valuable than having trust in your team?

Advanced statistics/monitoring: As a team leader, you need to have an instant clear picture of what is happening at all times. With Ringover’s advanced data statistics, you have a perfect visual of your team’s performance, patterns, whereabouts, and activities at all times. This immediate overview optimizes your time and energy so you can focus on the bigger picture.

CRM Integration: Ringover seamlessly integrates with household name products such as Salesforce and other CRM tools. Even if you have an in-house designed software, we can link it to your phone activity. Any call will automatically sync with your system’s information, once again saving you valuable time and resources.

Personalised greetings/music on hold: You should never say no to a chance to showcase your company’s personality and culture. You can do this with Ringover by customizing your greetings and hold music. You can make it fun, cool, or whatever you feel works best for your clients.

Is your business ready to become its best version with Ringover?

Contact our experts to help guide you step-by-step at +1-844-411-1221 or send an email to Start your free trial today.