Create and manage operating hours

Omnichannel for Customer Service offers a suite of capabilities that extend the power of Dynamics 365 Customer Service Enterprise to enable organizations to instantly connect and engage with their customers across digital messaging channels. An additional license is required to access Omnichannel for Customer Service. For more information, see the Dynamics 365 Customer Service pricing overview and Dynamics 365 Customer Service pricing plan pages.


Support for the Omnichannel Administration app ended on April 30, 2022, and the app was removed in July 2023. We recommend that you use the Customer Service admin center app to configure the latest features, such as unified routing and voice channel. More information: Omnichannel Administration app is deprecated

Operating hours define the hours when your organization's customer support team is active and available to serve customers. By setting up operating hours, you help your customers and your organization work together to resolve issues.

The operating hour schedules cater to the following scenarios:

  • Display the non-availability of customer support on public holidays that are otherwise operating hours.
  • Accommodate change of calendar timings for daylight saving time twice an year for timezones that have implemented the daylight saving time.
  • Set up separate schedules for agents, bots, and queues to cater to different business scenarios and product lines seamlessly for any channel.
  • Define schedules to transition customer queues from bots to agents.
  • Customize the display and other settings of the chat widget during non-business hours.

After you define the business hours for your organization and set up automated messages to be displayed to customers, when customers interact through a channel during non-business hours, they will see the messages that you've set. For example, customers can be shown an offline message on the chat widget as "Our agents are not available. Our business hours are between 8:00 am and 5:00 pm." Similarly, for social channels, you can configure the operating hours at the queue level. When customers contact your agents through any of the social channels outside the business hours, they'll receive responses that you've set.

In the Customer Service admin center or Omnichannel admin center (deprecated) app, after you've created an operating hour record, you can do the following steps, depending on your requirement:


Omnichannel admin center is deprecated. Use the Customer Service admin center app for admin tasks across Customer Service.

  • Queues: Configure the operating hour on the main page of the queue.
  • Chat widget: Add the operating hour record on the Chat widget tab.
  • SMS channels: Add the operating hour record on the Behaviors tab of the channel instance that can be accessed through the corresponding workstream.

When operating hours are in effect, work items during non-business hours are handled based on the overflow conditions for before a work item is queued

Create a record to define operating hours

You can define operating hours in the Customer Service admin center or Customer Service Hub app.

  1. Go to one of the apps, and perform the following steps.

    1. In the site map, select Calendars in Operations. The Calendar page appears.

    2. In the Operating Hours section, select Manage.

      The Active Operating Hours view is displayed. You can switch between various system views using the drop-down list.

  2. Select New. The New Operating Hour page is displayed.

  3. On the General tab, provide the following information:

    • Name: Enter a name for the operating hour record.
    • Owner: Accept the default value or search to specify a different owner.
    • Description: Enter an optional description of the operating hour record.
  4. Select Save. The Working Hours tab is displayed. By default, the calendar displays the work hours defined as 8:00 am to 5:00 pm.

  5. On the Working Hours tab, select New > Working hours in the calendar.

  6. In the Working hours panel, set the following options to define the working hours schedule.

    • All Day: Specify Yes, if the chat widget should be available 24/7.
    • Calendar: Specify the period for the schedule. The option to choose dates is available only when All Day is Yes.
    • Time: Select the start and end time for the schedule.
    • Repeat: Select a recurrence option.
    • choose an end date: Optionally, specify an end date.
    • Time zone: Select an applicable time zone. The daylight saving timings are taken into account, if applicable for the selected time zone.

    Create an operating hour schedule.

  7. Select Save. You are returned to the Working Hours tab.

Define a holiday on the calendar

  1. To set unavailability of customer support for a public holiday, on the calendar view, select New > Holiday.

  2. Select the date or date range, and specify a reason.

  3. Save the settings.

  4. Select Save on the navigation bar.

Edit or delete the work hour settings

You can edit or delete the operating hours schedule in an existing record.

  1. Go to the record in which you want to modify the schedule.

  2. Select an event on the calendar.

  3. On the menu that appears, select Edit, and select one of the options:

    • This event
    • This and all following events
    • All events in the series
  4. If you want to delete an event, select Delete.

    Edit an event.

Add operating hours to a chat widget

Do the following to specify operating hours for a chat widget:

  1. Open the Chat channel settings widget, and select the chat widget tab.

  2. Toggle the Show widget during operation hours to On.

  3. In the Operating hours name field, browse, and select the operating hour record. The chat widget is displayed during the hours specified in the selected operating hour record.

  4. Select Show widget outside of operation hours to display the widget outside work hours.

  5. Save the changes.

Add operating hours to a queue

You can add operating hours to a queue that can later be configured for a social channel. If operation hours aren't configured, the queues will be available round the clock.

Do the following to specify operating hours for a queue:

  1. Navigate to the Customer Service admin center or Customer Service Hub app, and perform the following steps:

    1. In the site map, select Queues in Customer Support. The Queues page appears.

    2. In the Advanced Queues section, select Manage.

      The Queues view is displayed.

  2. Open the queue for which you want to specify the operating hours.

  3. On the Operation hours tab, select Set operation hours.

  4. In the Set operation hours page, search and select the operating hour record that you want to specify.

  5. Save the changes.


You can't migrate the Calendar entity by using the export and import options and need to set up the work hours manually.

See also

Manage overflow of queues
Automated messages
Add a chat widget
Configure a pre-chat survey
Create quick replies
Create chat authentication settings
Embed chat widget in Power Apps portals