Business hours

Overview

The business hours feature allows you to specify the time range that your team is expected to respond to customers. Leverage business hours to make your analytics more accurate, or use them to automate workflows using Front’s rules engine.

You can specify team-level business hours per team, or inbox-level business hours per team inbox. This is useful for global organizations with distinct business hours per office or time zone. 


How it works

Features

  • Team-level business hours: Each Team can have its own business hours setting. Multiple Teams available on Scale plans only.
  • Inbox-level business hours (Scale plan): Each team inbox can have its own business hours setting. This is useful if you need to set up multiple business hours in one Team.
  • Time zone setting: Select the time zone for your business hours.
  • Access: A company admin must also be a team admin to change team-level and inbox-level business hours.

Business hours logic

If you have multiple business hours set up, Front will select the most specific hours to apply to a conversation. Inbox-level business hours are prioritized over team-level hours. If a conversation is in multiple inboxes with business hours set up, Front will prioritize the inbox that is first in alphabetical order. See below for examples.

A conversation is in a single inbox: 

Team-level business hours set up

Inbox-level business hours set up

Business hours used in analytics calculations and rules

Inbox business hours

Team business hours

Inbox business hours

None

A conversation is in multiple inboxes (e.g. in both Inbox A and B):

Team-level business hours set up

Inbox-level business hours set up (Inbox A)

Inbox-level business hours set up (Inbox B)

Business hours used in analytics calculations and rules

Inbox A’s business hours

Inbox B’s business hours

Team business hours

Inbox A’s business hours

Inbox B’s business hours

None

Analytics examples

  • Your business hours are set for 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM and a message arrives at 4:30 PM. Your team replies the next day at 9:30 AM. Reply time will count as 1 hour.
  • Your business hours are set for 9:00AM - 5:00PM and a message arrives at 6:00 PM. Your team replies the next day at 9:30 AM. Reply time will count as 30 minutes.

Team-level instructions

You can set up and manage team-level business hours in Front Analytics. You must have the Team Admin role for the team.

Set business hours

Step 1

Open Front Analytics by clicking the Analytics icon on the top left of Front.

If you have multiple Teams, choose the desired team from the team selection dropdown.

Step 2

Click Edit business hours at the top of your report. It will open the business hours menu showing your current business hours that are set up. If this is your first time setting up, then your business hours will be turned off by default.

Step 3

As you click on the days of the week, you'll be able to customize business hours for each day you've selected. You will also see the time zone that the hours are being set for.

Step 4

Click Save when done.

Clear business hours

Step 1

Open Front Analytics by clicking the Analytics icon on the top left of Front.

If you have multiple Teams, choose the desired team from the team selection dropdown.

Step 2

At the top of the report, click Edit business hours. It will open the business hours menu showing your current business hours that are set up. Click Clear business hours.

Step 3

You'll be prompted to confirm that you'd like to clear business hours. Click the Clear business hours button.


Inbox-level instructions

You can set up and manage inbox-level business hours in your team inbox settings. You must have the Team Admin role for the team where the inbox is located.

This feature is available only on the Scale plan.

Set business hours

Step 1

Click the gear icon on the top right of Front and into the Company settings tab.

Step 2

In your left sidebar menu, scroll to one of your teams, then click the Inboxes tab. Select the inbox you’d like to set business hours for.

Step 3

Click Business hours, then select the applicable days, start and end times, and time zone for the inbox. 

Step 4

Click Save.

Step 5

You'll be prompted to confirm that you'd like to set business hours. Click the Save button.

Clear business hours

Step 1

Click the gear icon on the top right of Front and into the Company settings tab.

Step 2

In your left sidebar menu, scroll to one of your teams, then click the Inboxes tab. Select the inbox you’d like to set business hours for.

Step 3

Click Business hours, then click Clear business hours.

Step 4

You'll be prompted to confirm that you'd like to clear business hours. Click the Clear business hours button.


FAQ

How about teams in multiple time zones?

Option 1: One Front Team (Growth plan)

If you have teams in multiple time zones, set team-level business hours to include other locations to ensure their data is captured. For instance, if your team covers both EST and PST time zones from 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM respectively, but you are based in PST, then set business hours from 6:00 AM - 5:00 PM to cover all working times.

Option 2: Multiple Front Teams (Scale plan only)

Create a Front Team for each time zone, then set up team-level business hours per Team.

Option 3: Multiple team inboxes (Scale plan only)

Set up a team inbox for each time zone, then set up inbox-level business hours per inbox.

What if I respond outside of business hours?

When business hours are set, hours that fall outside of them will not count towards reply/handle times, giving you a clearer picture of how your teammates are performing. Keep in mind that if you deactivate Saturday and Sunday, but respond on Sunday to a message received on Saturday, the response time for that conversation will be 0 (because 0 business hours passed between its receipt and handling).

Will changing business hours change analytics?

For performance reasons, business hours are applied every time you receive or send a message. This means that if you edit your business hours, it won't change the reply time of past messages. It will only affect future conversations.

What about Shifts in different time zones?

If you use the Shifts feature for teams that work across multiple time zones, teammate analytics will calculate activities based on their defined shifts, even if it's outside of defined business hours. Teammates who do not have a shift defined will fallback to having their analytics activities calculate based on business hours.

How can I see volume inside vs. outside business hours?

Use an analytics messages export and filter by the message date/time within the export to see how many came in during a certain time.


Pricing

Team-level business hours are available on the Growth plan or above. Inbox-level business hours and multiple Teams are available on the Scale plan. Some legacy plans with different names may also have these features.

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