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  • Best method to relieve company operator?

    We are in the process of rolling out a new installation of ShoreTel 9.2 (250 users, ShoreTel Director on Windows 2008, Outlook on Exchange 2003). We are curious to learn what others have done about relieving the Operator Call Manager user during lunch.

    We have 1 primary Operator using Operator Call Manager. We also want everyone including the operator to have their own DID extension and voice box.

    When the operator takes lunch they will be relieved by someone else who is trained and does not have the Operator Call Manager. The relief person will physically sit in the operatorís seat to cover during lunch.

    If the relief person logs in as themselves they will not have access to Operator Call Manager since it is licensed per user.

    If the relief person logs in as the operator then they will not have access to their own extension and voice box.

    Short of purchasing all the relief people their own Operator Call Manager license is there a better method to accomplish this?

  • #2
    Based on what you have stated as your desired operation the best method is to purchase each backup operator their own operator license. I understand that this can be expensive and have gotten around this in some cases by making the custom call handling mode of the backup operator forward always to the operator extension. They will then get all of their own calls and the only real inconvenience is that they then need to manually transfer calls to their mailbox if something needs to get left there.

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    • #3
      We encountered a similar situation. We really didn't want to purchase multiple Operator licenses, so we created a generic operator account. Everyone who physically sits at the reception desk uses that account when answering calls. We set up a voicemail box for our primary receptionist.

      But based on what you are trying to accomplish, this is probably not acceptable. blanning's solution of custom call handling might work. In 9.2, you can use the Personalized Call Handling rules to automatically forward calls during a specific time period. That would make it easier for the backup receptionist.

      It would be nice if Shoretel could offer a per-seat operator license. Or as an alternative, it would be nice if Shoretel had some capability to handle two extensions with the Operator client or some similar capability.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by dalva View Post
        When the operator takes lunch they will be relieved by someone else who is trained and does not have the Operator Call Manager. The relief person will physically sit in the operator’s seat to cover during lunch.

        If the relief person logs in as themselves they will not have access to Operator Call Manager since it is licensed per user.

        If the relief person logs in as the operator then they will not have access to their own extension and voice box.

        Short of purchasing all the relief people their own Operator Call Manager license is there a better method to accomplish this?
        This should not be an issue (unless you are using roaming profiles) since the CM software would be setup to use the receptionists Shoretel user. So basically the backup person logs into the PC but their profile on that PC needs to be setup to sync with the operator's phone (thus the operator user account) so they would still have access to the operator call manager license.

        You will need to setup the contacts list (or extension monitor depending on version) in each backup person's profile. Oh, and you will need to setup the Custom CHM on each backup person's user account to forward calls to the operator extension. The backup user will then put themselves into Custom right before taking over for the operator. They can access their VM from any Shoretel phone so that is not an issue.

        I hope this helps.
        Last edited by ccm399; 01-04-2010, 10:59 AM.

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        • #5
          We setup the operator as a hunt group. Within that hunt group, we configure the call forward destination (for when the operator is busy) to be a second hunt group. We put our relievers in there. But, we don't have our relievers sit in the operator chair. They don't seem to have a problem handling the calls without the operator call manager, they are still able to transfer calls. I think they are only limited in that they can't see presence information within call manager.

          I agree with ccm399, if the relief physically uses the same phone as the operator, just configure the call manager on that users Windows profile to be the operator's extension. Of course, the biggest issue is that they won't get there own calls.

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          • #6
            Thanks to all who submitted suggestions. We'll look them over and come up with a solution which fits our needs.

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