We mentioned previously that Dynamic Initiatives are "dynamic" because the records in the call queue are constantly changed and updated.
When implemented correctly, Dynamic Initiatives provide a huge strategic benefit. They can help insure that new Lead inquiries are being dialed in minutes, they aid reps in actively and consistently following up on Leads to make contact, and help agents target the best possible Leads for a given day and hour of the day.
Dynamic Initiatives are created with the Dialer Initiative tool in the Admin tab. You can choose to either create Lead record or Contact record initiatives, though in our experience the vast majority of organizations (95+ percent) use Lead-based initiatives exclusively.
Armed with your database query knowledge and your call workflow strategy, let's get started building some actual initiatives.
Each page will now be described below
The first Initiative setup section lets us establish some basic operating parameters. Give your initiative a name, a start date and an end date. If your initiative is going to be an ongoing, “never-ending” initiative, set the end date out for several years.
Default voice message, email, fax, and script — If desired, specify a default voice message, email, fax, and script.
The Limit Calls to field determines which users get to call the entries in the initiative. You can choose from these settings:
Just like the Limit Calls To option, the Call Nows Go To can be set to Initiative Attendees, Only Owner, or Campaign Attendees.
Callbacks Go To — One of the PowerDialer's strongest features is its automated callback option. When a callback is set in the PowerDialer, the system automatically tracks the date, time, and record needed for the call back, then puts the information directly in front of the user at the right time.
To help workflow and keep call backs from stagnating, the system applies a time limit to how long a call back can sit idle if the user who created it doesn't take it. This setting has the same three options, with one additional setting:
Apply Attempt Limits — This setting prevents users from making an excessive number of first and second call attempts. This is designed to be a regulatory tool to prevent users from "hogging" all of the newest, freshest leads. To use this setting, you also need to set the Attempt Limit number in each employees' user profile.
Attendees — This is how you assign agents to the Dialer Initiative. Press the Invite button to open the dialogue to choose employees and click the box next to the name of the agents you wish to select. You can also select all the employees at once by clicking the check mark in the header above the boxes. When you're done, click Update Attendees
Days Active — This establishes which days of the week the Initiative runs. This can be important if you don't want users to call on "off work" days, like Saturdays, for instance.
Call Recording Ratio — The Call Recording Ratio works in conjunction with the InsideSales.com Recording & Monitoring system. This setting instructs the Initiative to automatically record each user's calls at a pre-determined rate. A "1/5" ratio, for instance, instructs the initiative to randomly record one out of every five calls. If no call recording ratio is specified here, the dialer reverts to the specified recording ratio for each individual employee (located in their Employee Profile).
Minimum Recording Time — This specifies the number in seconds of how long a call must be for the dialer system to keep any call recordings. For example, if you set it to 30, the system will automatically delete any call recordings 30 seconds or shorter.
Time Between Calls — By default, a Dialer Initiative runs its assigned database queries every 60 minutes. In essence, the system rebuilds your calling queue each time the queries run. This is a great feature, because it ensures that the most important leads will continue to rise to the top of the queue.
The potential problem, however, is that it can also mean that leads that were called say, 30 minutes ago could theoretically get called again the next time the dialer queries run. Thus, the time between calls prevents leads from getting called too often by putting a "back-off" time in place.
Depending on how you've set up your queries, there are other ways you could strategically prevent "over calling" from happening, but this option puts a nice failsafe in place.
Agent Time Between Calls — This is similar to the Time Between Calls option, only this setting is specific to individual agents. The Time Between Calls determines how often a Lead can get called; the Agent Time Between Calls determines how often any one agent can be the one making the call.
For example: if Time Between Calls is set for 8 hours, but the Agent Time Between Calls is set for 24 hours, then the same Lead could theoretically get called twice within 8 hours, but it would have to be by two separate agents (since the first agent would have to wait 24 hours before being able to call the Lead again).
No Answer Timeout — This setting controls how long the dialer system will let a recipient's phone ring without answering. Once a call hits the No Answer Timeout limit, the dialer server will automatically disconnect the call.
For your information:
Caller ID — Specifies what will appear on a recipient's phone as the originating number, for any calls originating from this Initiative. If a number is not specified, or the Use agent station check box is selected, the system will use each agent's individual station phone number for the Caller ID, as listed on their Employee Information page.
Also, be aware that calls that originate elsewhere (like Click-to-Call within the CRM) will show a different Caller ID.
Prioritize Phone Fields—The second Initiative setup page is very simple; choose which of the phone number fields in your Lead Layout can potentially be dialed, and in what order.
Unless you have a compelling reason not to, we recommend always using the default "Phone" field as the primary dialing option, but feel free to add any of the secondary phone fields to the list.
After adding the fields you want, you can drag-and-drop the list order to suit your needs.
The third section is where you create your time blocks, and each block's associated database queries. If this is a new initiative, there won't be any visible information. If you're editing an existing initiative, you should see the existing setup.
The first step is to establish the Time Ranges. As mentioned earlier, the time range(s) should coincide with when your reps are actually making calls, not with the location of the records being dialed (the queries themselves control which locations / time zones are being targeted).
Click Add Time Range to add a block of time to the Initiative. For purposes of this training, set the start range to 8:00 AM, and the end range to 8:00 PM.
As soon as you add the time range, the system will immediately pop up the Query Builder screen.
For this training, change the name of the query to "Eastern Time Only - All Day."
Next, (as shown below) you can choose a value for the Limit Calls to field. This field determines which users get to call the results of the query. This is the same as the Limit Calls To setting on the Dialer Initiative Information page, but is instead specific to individual queries. Choosing settings other than "Initiative Settings" from this dropdown will override the Limit Calls to setting on Dialer Initiative Information page. By taking advantage of this, you are able to have different queries within utilized different Limit Calls To settings if you so choose.
You can choose from these settings:
Queries use two components to generate the call queue—Filters and Sorting rules. Filters control which Leads appear in the queue; sorting rules control what order they appear. This is a key distinction, especially for new Sysadmins, to better manage Initiatives—"Are my users getting the right records to call, and are they getting them in the correct order?"
Start by adding a Filter to the query
Notice you can use any data field you want as a query filter, but most Sysadmins tend to focus on just a few key options.
In the dropdown, choose the field on which you want the filter to be based. In this case, select "Time Zone" as the filter field.
Once the field filter is chosen, the next step is to set our logical options, or Boolean Operators. The First option is the IS/IS NOT option checkbox. Most of the time you'll use the IS option, so leave the checkmark blank.
Next, we need to decide if we want to limit our choice to just one option, a select set of options, or everything at once. This is represented by the Equal To, One Of, or Set to Any Value options in the dropdown.
In this case, we are only going to set one option, Eastern Time, so choose the (=) equal to.
Then in the last dropdown, we need to select Eastern Standard Time (America/New York).
So to sum up so far: we've instructed the query for this Dialer Initiative, that between the hours of 8:00 AM and 8:00 PM, we only want to call Leads located in the Eastern time zone. However, that's still fairly broad in scope, so we might want to add a couple more filters, and a sorting rule or two before we move on.
Click the Add Filter button again, and select Lead Status as the controlling field.
Now in our Boolean operators, select One of in the dropdown.
Let's assume that we wanted to call all Leads in Eastern time zone (because that's the filter we set previously), but only those whose Lead Status was not set (i.e., blank), or still marked as New. To do this, click Not Set in the dropdown menu so that it's highlighted. Then, while holding down the CTRL key, select New as a second option for our filter.
Great! We've narrowed down our entire database of Leads to only those that match the specified Time Zones and Lead Statuses.
For our third filter, we're going to limit the Leads in the queue to only those who have been dialed less than three (3) times (i.e., they've been called 0, 1, or 2 times). Click Add Filter once again, and select Dial Attempts as the controlling field.
Now notice that for this filter, we have quite a few more Boolean operators than for our Time Zone and Lead Status filters. This is because unlike Time Zone and Lead Status, which have a finite number of options, the Dial Attempts field could theoretically be any number (obviously no one is going to get called 2,500 times or anything, but as far as the dialer server knows, the number could be anything).
In this particular case, we could use either of two options: Less Than, or Between. For simplicity, we'll set the Dial Attempts filter to "Less than 3." In other situations, the "between" option might have been more appropriate; for example, "Less than 6" and "Between 2 and 5" are clearly not the same. In this case though, "Less than 3" and "Between 0 and 2" would accomplish the same thing.
At this point, your hypothetical query filters are set and ready. However, we're going to assume you want to sort the Leads to be called as well.
Click Add Sort to add a sorting rule.
Just like our filters, the first step is to choose the controlling field. We've already filtered our leads according to the number of dial attempts made; now we're going to sort them as well, because we want the Leads with the fewest number of dial attempts to get called first.
Select Dial Attempts as the controlling field for our sort. Now we need to choose the direction of the sort.
Most of the time, understanding "ascending" and "descending" order is pretty straightforward; "sort by ascending" means that records with the smallest values get called first, those with the highest values get called last. Descending order reverses that.
The only time this gets tricky is with dates. Remember: Dates sorted by Ascending order puts those with the smallest "chronological" value (read: oldest) first in the display. Dates sorted by Descending puts the largest "chronological" value (the most recent) first.
In our sample Initiative we're going to set Dial Attempts to Ascending order, meaning those with the fewest attempts get called first.
However, we're also going to add a second sorting rule of Created Date, and set it to descending so that it will list the newest leads within each subset of dial attempts.
With our two sorting rules combined, we're now going to call the Leads with the fewest number dial attempts, that are the newest in the system, first.
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Select your layout for this initiative. Your layouts are set up via the Manage Layout Groups.