Automatically forwarding all unanswered Lync calls to external number or Response Group RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi there,

    We have a customer who is "anti-voicemail", and would like all unanswered Lync phone calls to be answered by a human, in this case the reception or front counter staff.

    I've experimented with SEFAUtil, but the default no answer settings get overwritten when a user changes their call forwarding settings. Likewise, I've messed around with Exchange UM call answering rules, but it still insists on playing a message before transferring to operator.

    Is it possible to default all unanswered calls to forward/divert to an external number or Response Group? Perhaps through MSPL or a 3rd party option? There have been a couple of similar posts but seemingly no clear answer on whether it's possible. Any help would be appreciated.

    Regards, James.

    James Frost

    Tuesday, December 2, 2014 1:56 PM

All replies

  • I believe the only centralised manner to achieve this would be if the call is being delivered as part of a response group call flow, as you then have the ability to specify what would happen to the call in the event no agent answers.

    However, for direct calls to a users DDI number I don not believe there is a way in which you can globally set, and then maintain this configuration.

    As you eluded to, the SEFAUTil tooling is the sole option for achieving this, as you're ultimately modifying the user 'personal' preferences - which is why they can over ride these setting locally if they choose to do so.

    The argument is "who are you to tell me what I should and shouldn't be doing with my own personal calls, its my own personal number".

    Public facing, departmental numbers, and other business use numbers ware better controlled through response groups. Although I appreciate that if the customer asks the question you need to provide an answer - I don't think you can maintain control of this natively.

    Kind regards

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    • Proposed as answer by PaulB_NZMVP Friday, February 20, 2015 4:28 PM
    Tuesday, December 2, 2014 2:08 PM
  • I must agree with Ben. The Lync user is the one who chooses how to be reached, so that's where the control lies. I have come across a similar request before and ultimately you will need to sell a new approach to the business. I would suggest simring and team calling as options.

    Think about it, if someone called you, the call went to a general reception or similar, they would have to take a message on your behalf and get that back to you. IMHO that's a broken process that can be improved on by using simring.

    • Edited by PaulB_NZMVP Tuesday, December 2, 2014 5:36 PM
    Tuesday, December 2, 2014 5:31 PM
  • The customer is a high-touch services organisation who fervently believe that a phone call should always be answered by a real user (even if it's reception), and not voicemail. And this view is propagated from the MD down, so no much chance of changing their mind on this one unfortunately. The real issue is that this functionality (global redirect on no answer) was available on their old Aastra BP 250 PABX, and now isn't available on Lync.

    Having centralised call flows is also not practical either. Anyway, thanks for the feedback. I'm going to hit Microsoft up and see if whether MSPL or 3rd party options exist.

    Regards, James.

    James Frost

    Tuesday, December 2, 2014 10:36 PM
  • As an update, I was actually able to achieve the desired result by implementing a voicemail rerouting policy on the Exchange side, and some number transformation using an SBC. It's a bit of effort, and somewhat perversely involves enabling everyone for voicemail, which is exactly what we're trying to avoid... but once implemented, does allow all unanswered calls to be routed to a number of your choosing (front counter in my case).

    Further details in this thread.

    Regards, James.

    James Frost

    Monday, March 9, 2015 8:58 AM