Preferred Time Zones

All data generated by both AWS Services and Symbee Connect services is always timestamped (intentionally) in UTC (Coordinated Universal Time). This allows dates and times to remain consistent across all services, platforms, countries, time zones and daylight-savings related scenarios.

As a result, all data collected or migrated into AWS Glue/Athena for analysis and visualization in Amazon QuickSight is also timestamped and stored in UTC, not your preferred business time zone. This includes Contact Trace Records, Agent Events, Interaction Trace Records, Work Codes, Evaluations, etc.

Amazon QuickSight's time zone support is limited, especially at an individual user level, or in the UI layer. QuickSight are adding features in this area over time to help with this.

To cater for this, as part of the Symbee Connect Business Intelligence CloudFormation deployment, the date/time of all your data can be shifted to your preferred time zone (catering also for Daylight Savings periods) so that business users can set date/time ranges naturally (without having to do time zone conversions), and to allow users across the business to be looking at the "same thing" (for example, a report or dashboard showing "yesterday's" traffic).

One of the initial input parameter's when running the main Symbee Connect Business Intelligence CloudFormation asks for your Preferred Time Zone. There are also 2 other time zone related parameters - Is this an additional stack deployed for an alternate Time Zone?, and Additional Time Zone stack suffix.


The data is still stored in UTC - its just shifted to the preferred time zone within Athena when Amazon QuickSight accesses the data.

As a result, changing your preferred time zone after initial install is also trivial - simply run an Update on your stack in the AWS CloudFormation console, selecting the Use current template option, and change the selected Preferred Time Zone parameter value using the dropdown, and then progress through the CloudFormation Update screens and Submit the update. The CloudFormation update to change preferred time zone should only take a minute or so.

With the preferred time zone set during install, any dates/times on the managed/pre-defined Amazon QuickSight dashboards will be displayed in your preferred time zone rather than UTC, and any date/time window ranges selected are assumed to be in your preferred time zone.

See the Time Zone related CloudFormation input parameters here.

Support for Multiple Time Zones

What to do if your business has multiple different groups that operate on different preferred time zone's within the same Amazon Connect and Symbee Connect environment?

Symbee Connect Business Intelligence supports deploying the CloudFormation stack multiple times (for example, the first stack with one of the preferred time-zones, the second stack with an alternate time-zone).

As an example, say your environment operates 2 fundamentally different business groups, but both running out of the same AWS Account, Amazon Connect Instance, and Symbee Connect environment. One is in the US and prefers a US Pacific time zone (PST). One is located in Europe and prefers a France / Central European time zone (CET). The recommendation is to do the following:

  1. Deploy the Business Intelligence CloudFormation stack the first time, setting:

    • Is this an additional stack deployed for an alternate Time Zone?: No
    • Additional Time Zone stack suffix: leave blank
    • Preferred Time Zone: America/Los_Angeles
  2. Deploy the Business Intelligence CloudFormation stack a second time, setting:

    • Is this an additional stack deployed for an alternate Time Zone?: Yes
    • Additional Time Zone stack suffix: eu
    • Preferred Time Zone: Europe/Paris

Essentially, after following the steps within Installation and Setup to perform the initial CloudFormation deployment during which you select your first Preferred Time Zone, then repeat the Install again starting at the Download and Run the Business Intelligence CloudFormation step, selecting an alternative Preferred Time Zone, setting Is this an additional stack deployed for an alternate Time Zone? to Yes, and providing an Additional Time Zone stack suffix for the second (or third) CloudFormation stack.

Additionally, after your CloudFormation stack deployments are complete, also configure your alternate time zone stack in the Symbee Connect Administration Portal in the Business Intelligence settings (see here).