The Answering Rules icon as seen in figure 4.8 will take you to your answering rules center. Answering Rules are how you control what devices ring, how long those devices ring for, and what to do with the call if it is not answered.
Clicking the Answering Rules icon in will take you to your Answering Rules center as seen in figure 4.8.a. Here you will see your answering rules listed. If you
Ring Time Out
When you click on Answering Rules you will see the option to set the Ring Time Out as seen in figure 4.8.1. This is what controls how long a call attempts to ring you for.
To set the ring time out click the drop down to select how many seconds you would like calls to ring before sending the call to your Voicemail. If you do not want a ring time out, meaning you want your phone to ring forever, select Unlimited at the bottom of the drop down.
Allow and Block Phone numbers
To the right you will see the Allow and Block button as seen in figure 4.8.2. This allows you to enter certain phone numbers to allow or prevent them reaching you. Clicking the Allow / Block button will open the Allow / Block window as seen in figure 4.8.2.a
On the left is the allowed numbers. This allows you to add numbers that are blocked by the domain so you can still receive calls from that user.
Phone numbers added to allow will also let the call bypass Call Screening. If you have Call Screening enabled but want certain phone numbers to not have to record their name when calling you, add them to the allow field. Then when that number calls you, they will be sent directly to you and not have to record their name first.
Block allows you to add phone numbers you do not want to be able to reach you. To add a phone number to Allow or Block, simply enter the number into the respective field and click the plus sign to add the phone number. You can also block all anonymous or unknown callers simply by clicking the check box next to Block anonymous or unknown.
Click Done once you have finished adding phone numbers.
To the right is the Add Rule button as seen in figure 4.8.3 which allows you to configure a new Answering Rules for your account by opening the Add an Answering Rule window as seen in figure 4.8.3.a.
On the Add Answering Rule window you will see the Time Frame drop down as seen in figure 4.8.3.b. Time Frames are a set period of time which covers when we want certain events to occur, such as our phone to ring. Select the Time Frame you would like the new rule to take effect.
The Enable check box allows you to enable or disable the rule. Check box means the rule is enabled. Unchecked means the rule has been disabled.
Do Not Disturb
The Do not Disturb option as seen in figure 184.108.40.206. Which will prevent calls from reaching your devices and send the call to voicemail if voicemail is enabled or disconnect the call if voicemail is not enabled.
Underneath you will see Call Screening. When Call screening is enabled, callers record their name. After they record their name, then your devices will ring. If you answer the call, it will play the users name and allow to press 1 to be connected or hang up the call and have them be sent to voicemail or wherever your Call Forwarding options are configured to send unanswered calls.
The Call Forwarding options as seen in figure 220.127.116.11 will route calls based of the options select and your activity.
Always, which will forward the call to the destination entered in the Extensions, phone number, or phone field. You can enter an extension of another user. Another phone number which does not have to be on this system, it can be a cell phone or any number you desire. Or it can be a specific device. Or even a voicemail box.
When Busy forwards calls only when you are already on the line or busy.
When unanswered dictates where to send the call when the Ring For X Seconds has been reached.
When Office routes the call to the desired destination entered into Extension, number, or phone field when the user’s devices are offline. If you use a softphone on your laptop and shut down the softphone this is where your calls are forwarded to.
The Simultaneous Ring options, also known as SIM ring for short, seen in figure 18.104.22.168 allows you to configure what devices ring when receiving a call. Clicking the Simultaneous Ring box will allow you to ring more than just your extension and allow you to ring other extensions or phone numbers as well.
Include user’s extensions
Enabling this option will make sure your extension rings when sim rings is enabled.
Ring all user’s phones
This option will ring all devices registered to your account.
Answer confirmation for off net numbers
This option lets the user know the call is forward to that it is a forwarded call from their phone system and gives them the option to be connected to the user by pressing 1 or hanging up the call so they are not connected with the forwarded party.
Add Calls to SIM Ring
To add phones to the Simultaneous Ring for the call to be forwarded to enter the extension, number, or specific devices you would like to forward the call too like in figure 22.214.171.124.1.
The clock icon next to the extension number or phone field is a ring delay as seen in figure 126.96.36.199.1. You can delay this device from ringing in 5 second increments.
If you wanted a call that came into your extension to ring your cell phone if the call was not answered in 10 seconds you would configure the field to the right with your cell phone number. Then click the ring delay icon and slide the ring delay up to 10 seconds.
If you wanted another extension to ring after 15 seconds had gone by and the call was still not answered, click the plus sign.
Another field to enter an extension, phone number, or specific device appears. Enter the destination you would like to forward the call to as well. Then set the ring delay to 15 seconds as seen in figure 188.8.131.52.1.a
Now when a call reaches us, it is
routed to our extension. If the call is not answered in 10 seconds, then our extension and cell phone will start ringing. If the call is still not answered after 15 seconds our extension, our cell phone, and the other extension will start to ring.
Once an extension starts to ring it will continue to ring unless the call is answered, or the caller disconnects the call.
If you are looking to have a device stop ringing and more onto another device or phone number, talk to your office manager about configuring a Call Queue.
Just ring user’s extension
The final option is Just ring user’s extension which can be enabled by disabling Simultaneous ring then clicking the check box next to Just ring user’s extension as seen in figure 184.108.40.206.
For any of these changes to take effect you must click Save. If you do not want the changes to take effect, click Cancel as seen in figure 220.127.116.11.a.
Once a rule is created you can drag and drop them to prioritize them as seen in figure 18.104.22.168.b. Rules are read in a top to bottom format meaning the system checks the 1st rule to see if the Time Frame for that rule are in effect.
If the Time Frame selected for the Answering Rule is in effect it will follow the action configured in that rule. If the call is not occurring during the Time Frame selected for the answering rule the system will then check the next Answering Rule below and so on until it finds a rule with an active Time Frame as seen in figure 4.8.4. The 1st rule the system sees with a time frame in effect is the rule the system uses to route the call.
Answering Rule configuration example
- If we wanted our phones to ring during business hours.
- After hours we wanted calls to go directly to voicemail.
- Then Friday we were out of the office and wanted calls to go to our cell phone.
First, we would configure the default rule to send calls directly to Voicemail as seen in figure 4.8.4.b.
We would create a rule and select the Time Frame for our business hours. Configure the call forwarding and SIM ring to our liking then drag the rule above the default rule as seen in figure 4.8.4.c.
We would then create an answering rule with the out of office Time Frame selected and drag that rule to the top as seen in figure 4.8.4.d.
We would drag the vacation answering rule to the top. Then we would drag our rule we created for our open business hours under the out of office answering rule. Finally, we would have our default rule on the bottom.
Now if a call came in Monday through Thursday during our normal business hours, the Vacation rule would be ignored as the time frame is not in effect. The system would then look at the next rule underneath. The open hours rule would then take effect as the call came in during that time frame and would route the call based on the options selected in that rule.
Now if a call came in after our normal business hours on Monday through Thursday. It would check the 1st rule, see that time frame is not in effect then move onto the next rule.
It would see the call time does not fall within the Time Frame of the second rule so the system will move onto the next rule. The default rule uses the default time frame which is active 24/7 so this rule would take effect.
Now if a call came in on Friday during our normal business hours, the system would check the vacation rule. See that the call is during this time frame and use the vacation answering rule to forward the call.
Always remember the system reads the answering rules in a top-to-bottom order and will use the first rule with an active time frame to route the call. If a call is not being routed using a rule you want, then there is another rule the call time frame is matching. Answering Rules are how you control what devices ring, how long those devices ring for, and what to do with the call if it is not answered.