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What is Automatic Call Distribution (ACD)?

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What tools does Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) have to enhance customer interactions, and what benefits can it bring to your business as a whole? Learn all about Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) and how it works for the efficient handling of a large number of inbound calls in call centers.

Definition of Automatic Call Distribution (ACD)

Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) refers to the automatic distribution of calls. In simple terms, it is a telephony system that handles incoming call streams. It filters them based on predefined distribution rules and directs them to the necessary agents in call centers, departments, or IVR menus.

Answering the question “What is Automatic Call Distribution (ACD)?” we can also provide the following definition: ACD is a call routing system that integrates with VoIP and Interactive Voice Response (IVR) systems to ensure that incoming calls are intelligently directed to the most suitable agents.

The primary purpose of using Automatic Call Distribution (ACD)

What essentially is Automatic Call Distribution (ACD)? It is software designed to improve the efficiency of call centers, sort and avoid high call volumes to prevent agent overload. The automatic call distribution system also enhances the quality of customer service by ensuring that they are connected to a qualified agent as quickly as possible.

But before a subscriber’s call enters the queue and is directed to the appropriate agent or department, the call first goes through IVR – Interactive Voice Response. IVR and ACD are often confused with each other, so let’s distinguish these two systems.

What is the difference between IVR and ACD?

Interactive Voice Response (IVR) is a technology that allows users to interact with a programmed autoresponder before connecting to a call center agent. IVR prompts the subscriber to press certain digits on the phone keypad that best correspond to the nature of the call to the call center.

Based on the received information, Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) takes your response and directly transfers the call to the respective operator or call center department.

Thus, IVR is used for collecting customer data. ACD then uses this data for sorting and distributing calls. When used together, these two tools can indeed enhance customer satisfaction and call center employee engagement.

Why is Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) crucial for a call center?

Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) systems are critically important for call centers as they are designed to handle large volumes of inbound calls efficiently without engaging an excessive number of agents. The benefit and importance of ACD systems for a call center are most apparent during peak loads.

The release of a new product by the company, changes in the product or service cost, crisis situations, or even weekends—any of these situations can lead to a imbalance between incoming calls and the availability of operators ready to handle the call. The Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) system helps increase customer satisfaction and reduce their frustration by ensuring that calls are connected to agents best suited to address customer issues.

How does the Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) system work?

After understanding what Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) is, let’s delve into how the system operates. In general, the telephony for the call center relies on ACD for the following processes:

Subscriber Identification

The ACD system uses the subscriber’s identifier, Automatic Number Identification (ANI), or Dialed Number Identification Service (DNIS) to determine all available information about the subscriber to correctly route the call. In conjunction with IVR, the system can gather additional subscriber information based on IVR menu choices.


Call Queueing

ACD then sorts subscribers into waiting lists and determines the queue order, considering factors such as status, waiting time, and the type of customer request. For example, VIP subscribers can be given priority and placed at the front of the queue according to the queue configuration.


Call Routing

The ACD system further routes incoming calls based on pre-established distribution rules. For instance, calls can be distributed based on the priority of the phone number, agent availability, agent skill set and knowledge, time of day, queue statistics, theme of the queue, or other predefined rules.


Types of Call Distribution in Automatic Call Distribution (ACD)

ACD systems employ various types of call distribution methods:

Linear/Fixed Call Distribution

Routing phone calls to agents is done in a predetermined order, starting with the same agent each time. If the first agent in the list is unavailable, the call is redirected to the next agents until someone answers.

Circular/Sequential Call Distribution

Calls are directed to the next agent in the queue in a continuous cycle, ensuring an even distribution across the entire team.


Even Call Distribution Across Agents

ACD distributes calls among agents with the fewest number of calls or the longest idle time between calls (based on average talk time), optimizing their workload.

Simultaneous Call Distribution

Calls from Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) reach all available agents simultaneously, and the one who picks up first handles the call. This distribution minimizes waiting time for subscribers.


Call Distribution Based on Agent Work Hours

Calls are directed to available agents only during specific time periods based on their work schedule and status. This type of distribution is useful for more efficient operator work management.

Distribution Based on Agent Competencies

Calls are directed to available agents based on a predefined weighted competency score (language proficiency, experience, efficiency, skill set). According to the customer processing algorithm, the call will be directed to the operator with the most relevant competencies.


Call Distribution Based on Previous Data

The ACD system directs calls to agents best prepared to handle them based on available customer data: status, region, issue theme, customer-preferred communication channel, etc.

Advantages of Automatic Call Distribution (ACD)

So, let’s move on to the main question: how can Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) benefit your business? Let’s explore the key advantages of ACD systems.

Increased Call Center Team Productivity

ACD systems enhance the productivity of agents and maximize their efficiency. Each contact center agent handles only customer calls relevant to their knowledge, experience, skill set, level of expertise, etc.


Productivity is also improved by optimizing the work hours of agents. Instead of spending time redirecting calls, they can focus on solving customer issues and achieving KPIs.


Improved Staff Management

What is Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) in terms of workload management?

  • The use of the ACD system ensures that each member of your customer support or sales department receives an equal share of work by distributing inbound calls fairly and evenly.
  • Even call distribution reduces the likelihood of agent burnout due to overexertion. The result? Improved Employee Experience (EX).
  • ACD ensures that agents receive calls only during work duties, facilitating the management of remote teams, even in different time zones.
  • It also enhances morale as agents can take breaks, knowing that the system will route calls to working colleagues. They will receive only those calls that align with their skills.

Enhanced Customer Interaction

Intelligent call routing reduces waiting time and connects customers with the right agents who can best handle their requests. This means improved First Call Resolution (FCR) metrics and, ultimately, higher Customer Satisfaction (CSAT).


Seamless CRM Integrations

ACD seamlessly integrates with your organization’s existing tools such as CRM, databases, online chat for call centers, mailers, etc., reducing the need for agents to switch between multiple platforms. They can access necessary information from a single place, boosting productivity.


ACD improves the quality of communication with customers as information from past interactions is easily accessible. Customers won’t have to repeat themselves, and agents will be better prepared to resolve customer issues.


Additionally, Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) syncs with reporting and analytics dashboards, allowing you to track key metrics.


Resource Optimization

Improving your FCR can also reduce the costs of your contact center, as fewer customers will need to call more than once. Enhanced call routing can also reduce wait times and call redirection, which otherwise consumes agents’ time and increases costs.


It’s essential to note that Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) directly impacts FCR, call cost, wait time, and Net Promoter Score (NPS). You can identify areas that need improvement and allocate resources more effectively.


What is Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) from Global Bilgi?

The Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) technology is an integral part of the Sirius cloud contact center from Global Bilgi, offering a convenient and powerful tool for achieving business goals.

The Sirius cloud contact center platform is designed to handle a large number of contacts from various channels using automated call distribution (ACD) and Interactive Voice Response (IVR) technology.

Functions of ACD in the Sirius platform.

The features of the Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) system embedded in the Sirius platform include integration with Computer Telephony Integration (CTI), IVR, and CRM, skill-based routing, automatic callback, multiple call queues, voicemail routing, call monitoring, reporting, and agent training. This allows agents and managers to work with maximum efficiency through the smart web contact center interface. Your customers will receive seamless service through powerful tools, and your business will benefit from analytical capabilities and the flexibility of the omnichannel contact center system.

By using our cloud contact center software with built-in ACD, you can engage more customers, provide services across all available communication channels, and receive full support and service at any time with guaranteed fault tolerance.

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