Microsoft Dynamics 365 Blog

Imagine your eagerly awaited brand-new speakers finally arrive—and they don’t work. The first thing you do is call customer support, expecting a quick response. You hear crickets instead. How likely are you to buy from that company again? According to a recent study, two-thirds of shoppers would stop doing business with a brand after just two to three poor customer service experiences. Organizations let customers go unattended at their peril. Use of a fallback queue to catch misrouted queries is imperative.

One fallback queue for multiple divisions is a customer service nightmare

Businesses use fallback queues to make sure no customer query falls into a crack. For organizations with multiple divisions, however, managing a fallback queue becomes a tedious task if only one queue is used for this purpose.

Diagram that illustrates multiple divisions of a company using one fallback queue.

In this scenario, supervisors must be hyper-vigilant for any work that’s sent to the fallback queue. Agents in different divisions who are assigned to a monolithic queue may receive cases that they aren’t proficient in solving. They may also lack access to data outside of their division that they need to resolve a case.

Introducing workstream-level fallback queues in unified routing

Microsoft Dynamics 365 Customer Service is introducing an enhancement in unified routing to address these issues: workstream-level fallback queues.

Workstreams group the same type of customer queries. We’ve also seen businesses using workstreams to differentiate between their internal groups or divisions. Organizations can now create different fallback queues for each of their workstreams in the unified routing settings. Whenever the routing system can’t identify the queue to which an incoming work item should go, it routes the query to a workstream-level fallback queue.

Diagram that illustrates multiple divisions of a company, each with its own fallback queue.

Administrators can create a new fallback queue or choose an existing queue to use as a fallback. They can assign a fallback queue to a different workstream at any time. Admins can assign agents to fallback queues according to their business requirements.

Screenshot of fallback queue options when creating a workstream in Customer Service.
Screenshot of fallback queue options when creating routing rules in the Omnichannel admin center.

Managing fallback queues is easy with Power Automate

It isn’t enough to have a fallback queue for each workstream, however. Businesses also need to monitor their routing systems so that the fallback queues themselves don’t become a customer query graveyard. Organizations can use a Power Automate workflow to notify internal stakeholders, like supervisors and administrators, whenever a work item is routed to a fallback queue. Here’s how:

Send an email when a work item is routed to a workstream-level fallback queue

When a query is routed to a queue, the queue is associated with the work item in the Conversations table. We’ll use that action to trigger our flow. In the same action, we’ll determine whether the associated queue is a fallback queue by matching its ID. That’s Step 1 in the screenshot below.

Steps 2 and 3 get the name of the workstream and the “friendly” name of the fallback queue. The friendly name will be more helpful than the queue ID when we include it in the email that we send in Step 4.

Step 1: When a work item is routed to a queue, determine whether the queue is a fallback queue

  1. Open your fallback queue in the Customer Service admin center.
  2. In the URL, find the string that starts with “queueRecordId”%3A” and ends with “%2C and copy everything between the quotation marks. This is the queue ID.
    For example, if the URL contains “queueRecordId”%3A”5ee5b674-7eb9-ec11-983f-0022483d69c5”%2C, the queue ID is 5ee5b674-7eb9-ec11-983f-0022483d69c5.
Screenshot of a fallback queue URL with the queue ID portion highlighted.
  1. In Power Automate, create an automated cloud flow. Select the Microsoft Dataverse trigger When a row is added, modified or deleted.
  2. Set Change type to Modified, Table name to Conversations, and Scope to Organization.
  3. In Select columns, enter the following string: msdyn_cdsqueueid
  4. In Filter rows, enter the following string, replacing {queue ID} with the ID you found in step 1: _msdyn_cdsqueueid_value eq {queue ID}

Step 2: Find the name of the workstream that’s associated with the conversation

  1. Insert a new step. Select Microsoft Dataverse as the connector and Get a row by Workstream as the action.
  2. Set Table name to Work Streams.
  3. In Row ID, select the dynamic content Work stream (Value).

Step 3: Find the name of the queue that’s associated with the workstream

  1. Insert a new step. Select Microsoft Dataverse as the connector and Get a row by Queue as the action.
  2. Set Table name to Queues.
  3. In Row ID, select the dynamic content Queue (Value).

Step 4: Send an email

  1. Insert a new step. Select Office 365 Outlook as the connector and Send an email (V2) as the action.
  2. In To, enter the address or addresses to notify when a work item is routed to the fallback queue.
  3. Enter the subject and body of the email.
    In our example, we’ve included both the IDs and the names of the workstream and fallback queue using dynamic text that was collected in the preceding steps.

Save and test your flow.

Here’s the entire flow. Numbered steps in red arrows correspond to the steps provided earlier.

Screenshot of the completed flow, with Steps 1 through 4 highlighted.

It’s been our constant goal in unified routing to provide customers with robust and flexible routing solutions. Fallback queue enhancement not only gives freedom to businesses in terms of distributing their incoming workload. It also makes it easier for supervisors to monitor and manage their organization’s fallback queues.

This blog post is part of a series of deep dives that will help you deploy and use unified routing at your organization. See other posts in the series to learn more.

References

What Customer Service Leaders Should Be Prioritizing in 2022

Next steps

Read the fallback queue documentation.

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