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Microsoft Lync Server 2010 Resource Kit Tool: Response Group Agent Live

Microsoft Lync Server 2010 Resource Kit Tool: Response Group Agent Live

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This article offers a scenario to describe the Response Group Agent Live tool. Bob is a part-time Response Group agent. He is currently signed out from the agent group, but sees in the Response Group Agent Live tool that three calls are currently waiting while the other agents are busy serving customers. From within Response Group Agent Live, Bob quickly signs in to the Response Group to service the next call in the Response Group queue. You can download this tool and other Microsoft Lync Server 2010 Resource Kit tools from the Download Center.

Authors: Frédéric Dubut, Riccardo Trocca, Sam Gantner

Publication date: January 2011

Product versions: Microsoft Lync Server 2010, Microsoft Lync 2010

Introduction

The Response Group application gives agents the ability to access useful real-time information using its built-in Web service. Unfortunately, no graphical view of this data is available outside the application. The Response Group Agent Live Resource Kit tool solves this issue by providing a simple and graphical way to access this information, enhanced with real-time Microsoft Lync 2010 information such as the presence of other agents. You can download this tool and other Microsoft Lync Server 2010 communications software Resource Kit tools from the Download Center.

Description

Response Group Agent Live is a Windows application that provides sign-in and sign-out functionality and some real-time information (such as group membership and current number of calls) to Response Group agents. It is meant to be an enhanced version of the Agent Groups page (accessible from Lync 2010).

Output

The Response Group application provides a graphical user interface that has real-time information for Response Group agents.

Purpose

The Response Group application queues incoming calls, and then routes them to agent groups. To make informed decisions about which calls to service, agents can access real-time information about their agent groups, such as the agents who are available and how many calls are waiting in each queue. This information, initially accessible only through the Response Group service, is now available in an intuitive way by Response Group Agent Live.

Features

The Response Group Agent Live tool is built on the Response Group service and the Microsoft Lync 2010 SDK. It provides Response Group agents the information and capabilities that are available from the Response Group service (such as group membership, presence of other agents, and number of waiting calls).

Figure 1 illustrates the main interface of Response Group Agent Live.

Figure 1. Response Group Agent Live main interface

The following main features are available for agents in Response Group Agent Live:

  • Sign-in/out: Contrary to the Agent Groups page (accessible from Lync 2010), Response Group Agent Live allows only agents to sign-in or out of all agent groups at the same time. This application provides the following quick ways for agents to sign in or out:
  • Click the Sign-in/out (green and red) buttons within the application.
  • Right-click the system tray icon, and select sign in or sign out.
  • Using configurable keyboard shortcuts.
  • Group membership: When an agent group is selected, Response Group Agent Live displays the list of agents in this group in the right pane. If Lync 2010 is running on the same computer as this application, presence information and the contact card are displayed in the Response Group Agent Live. Agents can send an IM or call other agents directly from there.
  • Real-time statistics: Response Group Agent Live provides real-time statistics for all agent groups. The update frequency is one minute. When a call is answered by a Response Group, a visual indicator is added next to the group name with the current number of queued calls. Pausing the pointer over a group also displays the longest waiting time.

Configuration

Response Group Agent Live can be customized to individual preferences by using the Options dialog box in the application. In addition, the administrator can define the default host address by directly editing the defaultHostAddress property of the RGAgentLive.exe.config file.

Figure 2 illustrates the Options dialog box that agents can use to configure the host address and shortcut keys. This dialog is accessed by clicking the Options button on the top right of the main interface.

Figure 2. Options dialog box of Response Group Agent Live

The following different settings can be customized in the Response Group Agent Live configuration:

  • Host address: This is typically the web pool FQDN that belongs to the agent's home pool. The exact Response Group service address is automatically derived in the background from this information (by appending the right path after the host).
  • Shortcuts: The exact shortcuts to sign-in/out can be customized. The only limitation is that both shortcuts must contain the Windows logo key (in addition to at least one other key).
  • Start with Windows: The application can be configured to start automatically when Windows does.

Requirements

Response Group Agent Live requires .NET Framework 3.5 SP1. In addition, to take advantage of the presence and contact card features, Lync 2010 must be installed locally (and running).

Examples

Figure 3 illustrates how to call or send and an IM to another agent by right-clicking the contact in the right pane.

Figure 3. Calling or sending IM to another agent

Figure 4 illustrates how Response Group Agent Live displays the current number of calls in the queue and the longest wait-time among all these incoming calls.

Figure 4. Checking real-time statistics for a group

Summary

Fast sign-in and sign-out, group membership, and basic real-time statistics are interesting Response Group agent features that are only available outside the application from the Response Group service. With the Response Group Agent Live Resource Kit tool, Lync 2010 administrators can provide their agents with a Windows application that has a graphical user interface, helping them to perform their tasks faster.

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We Want to Hear from You

Keywords: Response Group, agent, formal, sign-in, sign-out, real-time, statistics

Comments
  • Can you release a version that will run on 32-bit Windows? This seems to only run on 64-bit.

  • Anyone know of a way to make theRG Agent Live refresh the stats more frequently.  It currently seems to take 45seconds to update.  

  • I would like a version that runs... it just crashes as soon as you execute it for us.

    Any chance of a bit of support on this tool please?

  • I agree, it  is exactly what we are looking for, but would be nice if it works...... at least yours starts.

  • Hi Ed,

    Thank you for your feedback. Effectively the Agent Live Tool is only available on 64-bit given Lync Server 2010 minimum requirements of running in a 64-bit Windows operating system.

    Thank you,

    Oscar Ruiz

  • Hi Nick,

    Unfortunately there’s no mechanism to modify the refresh rate. The Agent Live Tool is retrieving the information from the Response Group Web Service which updates the information every minute.

    Thank you,

    Oscar Ruiz

  • Hi Steve and James,

    The Agent Live Tool is not officially supported by Microsoft. If both of you can share more details about your setup I might be able to provide some help.

    Thank you,

    Oscar Ruiz

  • I have Response Group Agent Live running on Windows 2008R2 fine. But it only refreshes the screen once a minute or so!

    I've tried reducing the times in the config file but no change, is anyone else having the same problem?

    Thanks

    Chris Fawcett

  • One question, is this supported on CU4?

  • If you are interested in a solution we have developed called Espera that displays the realtime call waiting statistic and updated every 5 seconds for Lync Response Group Queues, contact Phillip Wong on phillipw@advatel.com.au or view this link for more information www.advatel.com.au/.../242

  • When I try to launch the Agent app I receive an error that states " Unable to connect to the RG web service. please verify the host address. do you want to retry?

    I configured the pool address in the RGAgentLive.exe.config file. and still have the same error and re-typed it again manually but no avail.

    Any ideas?

  • Any chance to see the sign-in status of other users belonging to a rg?

  • @ Alexander Vos

    Run this query against the Lync SQL DB

    SELECT Groups.Name, Agents.DisplayName, [State] FROM rgsdyn.dbo.AgentGroupSignInStates AS States JOIN rgsconfig.dbo.Agents AS Agents ON Agents.ID = States.AgentId JOIN rgsconfig.dbo.AgentGroups AS Groups ON Groups.ID = States.GroupId ORDER BY GroupId, States.State DESC

  • UC - Thank you for that query!! I've been searching the Lync SDK and googling everywhere to find this. If there is a URL which provides more breakdown of the RGS data locations in the DB so I can expand on the query for information I'm looking to display, that would be fantastic. What you have provided is a huge help. thanks.

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