All Courses

How the Routing Engine Works

There are two units of work that are routed to Agents within Gladly: Conversations and Tasks. The goal of the Routing Engine is to constantly take units of work that ready to be routed (Conversations or Tasks) and assign them to an Agent.

Below, you’ll learn what makes each unit of work ready to be routed, or “routable”.


As you know, Customers can only have one Conversation at any given time, regardless of the Channel the Customer used to reach out to you. Because all communications are contained in a single Conversation in the Customer’s Conversation Timeline within their Customer Profile, this allows Gladly to route the Customer’s Conversation and allows only one Agent to be assigned to a Conversation at one time.

Important things to keep in mind:

  • Conversations begin and end. (Open > Waiting > Closed status).
  • Conversations can have multiple Contacts.

Use the clickable graphic below to learn more about how Conversations work:

Click on the interactive icons in the image below to learn more.

When a Conversation is routed

To be “routable” means the Routing Engine tries to find a Conversation or Task to assign to an Agent. In the case of routing Conversations, this often occurs when a Conversation opens, but there’s a variety of scenarios that can lead to a Conversation becoming routable.

A Conversation is considered “routable” when:

  • An inbound Contact that opens a Conversation.
  • An inbound message that starts a new Contact in an already open Conversation if no other Contacts are ongoing.
    • Note – For ongoing email Contacts (like an email that hasn’t been responded to) assigned to an Agent, and that Customer then chats in, that Conversation will not automatically be re-routed. Some set up Rules using the “New Contact” Condition to make sure that certain kinds of new Contacts make the Conversation routable again.
  • Inbound phone calls, even if a Conversation has ongoing Contact and is already assigned.
  • The Conversation is unassigned from an Agent.

Now that you have an understanding of what makes a Conversation routable, use the graphic below to explore some practical examples of this in Gladly:

Click on the interactive icons in the image below to learn more.


Similar to Conversations, a Task can only have one Agent assigned to it. There are no limits to the number of Tasks that can be created for a Customer. If a Customer does have many Tasks, those Tasks can be assigned to various Agents without needing to be assigned to the same Agent as the Customer’s Conversation.

Task Routing Window

Through the Task Window Routing setting, you can set a time period (e.g., two days) so that Tasks are only routed during that period before the due date. For example:

  1. It’s October 1.
  2. An Agent wants to create a New Year’s card reminder Task due December 29.
  3. The company has set the Task Routing Window as two days.
  4. Therefore, the Task will not appear to be routed until December 27.
  5. Between October 1 to December 26, the Task is not routable. It becomes routable on December 27.

When a Task is routed

A Task is considered “routable” when:

  • A Task is created with no Agent assigned.
  • An open Task is reassigned to an Inbox manually (without a specific Agent assigned).
  • An open Task is reassigned to an Inbox by Reassignment Rules (without a specific Agent assigned).

Now that you have an understanding of how the routing process begins, next you will learn what happens once the process kicks off.