Voice over internet protocol, or VOIP, has quickly become the preferred method of communications hosting for businesses small and large looking to gain new features while simultaneously reducing associated costs. It is especially useful for companies that have offices in different states, or even international locations, or that have call centers across the globe.
In addition to saving money over conventional phone systems, companies that use VOIP enjoy access on a global scale, as well as handy features like unlimited calling, international calling, caller ID, voicemail, messaging, text-to-talk options, video conferencing, call waiting, hold music, auto attendant, call transfer, internet fax, and easy online administration, among a slew of other extras. One of the best features for many businesses, however, is time of day routing.
What is this feature and how does it work? Here’s what you need to know to make the most of time of day routing through your VOIP service.
What is Time of Day Routing?
Time of day routing, in a nutshell, is an extension of call forwarding. Just as you can set up your VOIP service to route calls from your home or office to your cell phone, you can also program the service to send calls to certain locations based on the time of day they come in. This could include sending after-hours calls to to other locations around the world, such as call centers or open offices.
How Does It Work?
The beauty of time of day routing is in the simplicity. All you have to do is set your parameters and calls will route where you want them to, when you want them to. First, you need to determine your “on shift” time period, when incoming calls will be routed to your primary location or phone number. This could be the business hours for your headquarters or a domestic call center, just for example.
Next, you can create “off shift” time periods and link them to other locations or numbers. Once your domestic business hours are over, you could begin routing incoming calls to an oversees office, or to international or 24-hour call centers. In many cases, you can set multiple shifts to coincide with business hours at different locations around the world.
You may also be able to set up time of day routing for different days of the week, such as weekends when your office is closed and you want calls to go to a call center. This is somewhat more complex than standard call routing, but the same basic principle applies. Once you’ve taken the time to set up your shifts and corresponding locations, your work is basically done.
The greatest benefit of utilizing the time of day routing feature through your VOIP service is that you’ll never miss a call. Even if calls are routed to a voicemail system, at least customers have the opportunity to leave a message so that you can connect with them later. For companies fielding calls from customers across the globe, this feature is a major boon.