Create a call queue

Call queues route callers to people in your organization who can help with a particular issue or question. Calls are distributed one at a time to the people in the queue, who are known as agents.

Call queues provide:

  • A greeting message.
  • Music while people are waiting on hold in a queue.
  • Call routing - in First In, First Out (FIFO) order - to agents.
  • Handling options for queue overflow and timeout.

Before you follow the procedures in this article, be sure you have read Plan for Teams auto attendants and call queues and followed the getting started steps.

The steps to set up a call queue includes:

  1. Set up general information
  2. Set the greeting and music
  3. Set up call answering
  4. Choose and assign agents
  5. Set call overflow handling
  6. Set call timeout handling

The steps outlined in the article create call queues using the Teams admin center. For instructions to create call queues using PowerShell, see Creating call queues with PowerShell cmdlets.

Follow these steps to set up your call queue

Step 1: Set up general information

To set up a call queue, in the Teams admin center, expand Voice, select Call queues, and then select Add.

Type a name for the call queue in the box at the top.

Add a resource account

To add an existing resource account:

  1. Under Resource accounts, click the Add button to add a resource account for this call queue.
  2. On the Add accounts pane, search for the resource account to add.
  3. Select the Add button next to the resource account you want to assign to this call queue.
  4. At the bottom of the pane, select the Add button.

If you need to create a resource account:

  1. Under Resource accounts, click the Add button to add a resource account for this call queue.
  2. On the Add accounts pane, search for any set of letters to pull up the results dropdown.
  3. Select the + Add a resource account button at the bottom of the results.
  4. On the Add resource account pane:
    1. Type in a descriptive Display name, which will be visible to agents.
    2. Type in a descriptive Username for the resource account.
    3. Select the Resource account type dropdown and select Call queue.
  5. At the bottom of the pane, select the Save button.
  6. On the Resource accounts pane, select the Add button.

Agents will see the resource account name when they receive an incoming call.

For more information, see Manage Teams resource accounts.

Assign a calling ID (optional)

Available for Teams channel/collaborative calling desktop users and Teams mobile client users with standard call queues.

You can assign outbound caller ID numbers for the agents by specifying one or more resource accounts with a phone number. Agents can select which outbound caller ID number to use with each outbound call they make. Within the Calls App, agents can use their Call Queue (CQ) / Auto Attendant (AA) number or their own personal Direct InWard Dial (DID).

Note

The resource account used for calling ID purposes must have a Microsoft Teams Phone Resource Account license and one of the following assigned:

  • A Calling Plan license and a phone number assigned
  • An Operator Connect phone number assigned
  • An online voice routing policy (phone number assignment is optional when using Direct Routing)
  1. Under Assign calling ID, select the Add button.
  2. On the Add accounts pane, search for the resource account(s) you want to allow agents to use for outbound caller ID purposes.
  3. Select the Add button next to the resource account with an assigned phone number.
  4. Select the Add button at the bottom of the pane.

If you don't have a resource account with an assigned phone number:

  1. Under Resource accounts, click the Add button to add a resource account.
  2. On the Add accounts pane, search for any set of letters to pull up the results dropdown.
  3. Select the + Add a resource account button at the bottom of the results.
  4. On the Add resource account pane:
    1. Type in a descriptive Display name, which will be visible to call recipients.
    2. Type in a descriptive Username for the resource account.
    3. Select the Resource account type dropdown and select Call queue.
  5. At the bottom of the pane, select the Save button.
  6. On the Resource accounts pane, select the Add button.

After you've created this new resource account for calling ID, you'll still need to:

Set the call queue language

Choose a supported language.

This language will be used for system-generated voice prompts and voicemail transcription, if you enable them.

Once you've selected a language, select the Next button at the bottom of the Add a call queue page.

Resources for complex scenarios

The following settings are recommended:

  • Conference mode to On
  • Routing method to Round robin or Longest idle
  • Presence-based routing to On
  • Agent alert time: to 20 seconds

Call queue feature compatibility

Feature Teams Desktop1 Teams Web Teams Mobile2 Lync IP Phones Standard Call Queues Channel Based Call Queues Comment
Agent Routing Methods
Attendant Routing Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Default
Longest Idle3 Y Y Y N Y Y Y Recommended
Round Robin Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Recommended
Serial Y Y Y Y Y Y4 Y4
Agent Routing Options
Presence Based Routing3 Y Y Y N Y Y Y Recommended
Agents can Opt-out Y Y Y Y7 Y7 Y Y Default
Transfer Modes
Conference Mode5 Y Y Y N Y6 Y Y Recommended
Transfer Mode Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Default
Collaborative Calling
Channel Based Queues Y N N N N n/a Y8
Dynamic caller ID
Standard call queue Y Y Y N N Y n/a
Channel based call queue Y n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a Y
PSTN Connectivity Methods See Note 9
Calling Plans Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
Direct Routing Y Y Y N N Y Y
Operator Connect Y Y Y Y Y
Miscellaneous
Call toast shows Resource Account Name Y N Y Y Y Y

Notes

  1. Microsoft Teams Windows client, Microsoft Teams Mac Client, Microsoft Teams on Virtualized Desktop Infrastructure.
  2. Microsoft Teams iPhone app, Microsoft Teams Android app.
  3. Selecting Longest Idle for the agent routing method will automatically enable Presence based routing.
  4. Can only set the order when adding individual users as part of standard call queues. When a distribution list or Teams Channel is used order will be alphabetical.
  5. Conference mode isn't supported if phone calls are routed to the queue from a Direct Routing gateway that is enabled for Location Based Routing.
  6. Microsoft Teams Phone only.
  7. Through the User Settings Portal page at https://aka.ms/vmsettings.
  8. Only public channels are supported.
  9. Auto Attendants and Call Queues cannot transfer calls between PSTN connectivity methods.

Supported clients

The following clients are supported for call agents in a call queue:

  • Skype for Business desktop client 2016 (32-bit and 64-bit versions)

  • Lync desktop client 2013 (32-bit and 64-bit versions)

  • All IP phone models supported for Microsoft Teams. See Getting phones for Skype for Business Online.

  • Mac Skype for Business Client (version 16.8.196 and later)

  • Android Skype for Business Client (version 6.16.0.9 and later)

  • iPhone Skype for Business Client (version 6.16.0 and later)

  • iPad Skype for Business Client (version 6.16.0 and later)

  • Microsoft Teams Windows client (32-bit and 64-bit versions)

  • Microsoft Teams Mac client

  • Microsoft Teams on Virtualized Desktop Infrastructure (Windows Virtual Desktop, Citrix, and VMware)

  • Microsoft Teams iPhone app

  • Microsoft Teams Android app

    Note

    Call queues that are assigned a direct routing number don't support Skype for Business clients, Lync clients, or Skype for Business IP Phones as agents. The Teams client is only supported with a co-existence mode of Teams Only.

Call Queue Diagnostic Tool

If you're an administrator, you can use the following diagnostic tool to validate that a call queue is able to receive calls:

  1. Select Run Tests below, which will populate the diagnostic in the Microsoft 365 Admin Center.

  2. In the Run diagnostic pane, enter the Resource Account in the Username or Email field, and then select Run Tests.

  3. The tests will return the best next steps to address any tenant, policy, and resource account configurations to validate that the call queue is able to receive calls.

Here's what you get with Microsoft Teams Phone

Getting service phone numbers

Country and region availability for Audio Conferencing and Calling Plans