An introduction to Omnichannel Routing in Zendesk

This article will give you an overview of Zendesk's Omnichannel Routing, Agent Availability and the brand new Queues features.

An introduction to Omnichannel Routing in Zendesk

When users contact your support team they expect their question to be answered quickly and correctly in the most efficient way. No customer wants to wait for their issue to be resolved, and IVRs, "please hold for an available agent", or "let me transfer you to the right team" are the bane of any customers' support experience.

In a modern customer care setup the first line of defence is your Help Center or Bot which offers self service solutions for your customers. When the content of your knowledge base can't assist, we can leverage forms or custom bot answers to collect customer intent and contextual information before we pass the request or conversation to one of the available support agents.

Group Based Routing

Traditionally, this is where Zendesk triggers take over. By looking at a form, custom field values, language, brand or other information, we can use triggers to assign tickets to the right group of agents. The tickets are assigned to a group, and appear in views where agent can work through the list of tickets top to bottom.

This approach has a few downsides though. Tickets appear in a view and chances are that if I look at the top most ticket, it might not be the best ticket for my skills. Similarly, there might be a perfect ticket somewhere in the list that does match the language I speak. Or, since we assign all requests to our Support team first, it might take a while for that one question related to an invoice to be reassigned to Finance.

To tackle these issues Zendesk environments often evolve into complex environments with multiple Support groups per language, and dozens of views to filter tickets about orders, refunds, technical support etc. These "hacks" are all workarounds to give insight in the list of open tickets, and surface the right tickets to the right person or team. But they're not ideal, and scale badly since they're hard to maintain.