Written by Harriet Zuidland. Last updated: April 16, 2019
What can I do with IVR?
IVR is the series of choices that callers hear when they call a number like: ‘Press 1 for the sales department, press 2 for the administration department’. After the caller made a choice, the call will be forwarded to the selected colleague or call group.
A new IVR
- Log into Freedom.
- Click on Admin in the menu bar.
- Choose IVR.
- Select Add and agree to the extra costs.
- Give the IVR a Name so that you recognize it if you make multiple IVRs.
- Give the IVR a Description, for example the different choices that are in the IVR.
- The Timeout is the number of seconds that the caller has to make their selection. 10 seconds is generally a good amount of time.
- You can record the Start message in ‘sounds’ and then select it here from the choices. The start message is the message that callers hear when they access the IVR. It is optional.
- You can record the Incorrect message yourself under ‘sounds’ and then select it from the choices here. The incorrect message is what callers hear if they make an incorrect or invalid choice. It is an optional message.
- You can record the Timeout message under ‘sounds’ and then select it from the choices here. Callers hear the timeout message when they didn’t enter a choice in the allotted time. This is also optional.
- Click on Save.
- Read below to learn how to add an IVR to the Dial plan.
IVR in the Dial plan
- Select Dial plan in the menu bar and then select the number you want to make the dial plan for.
- Select add step. A new rule will open. In the first box choose IVR. In the second box choose the correct IVR. Click on Save.
- Two possibilities will appear. The first option is three horizontal stripes and then under is the option other/failed.
- Choose the three dots behind the first option and then choose change.
- Choose option 1. You can add extra options by clicking the blue plus sign.
- Under each option fill in what should happen if the caller makes this choice.
- Under the option Other/failed you can indicate what happens if the caller makes no choice or the wrong choice. For example you can choose to go back to the start of the IVR so that the caller hears the options again.
Tips for the IVR
- Don’t make your IVR too long. Callers find it irritating to need to remember a long series of options.
- Make an extra level in your IVR. So first ‘ For the sales department press 1’. When 1 is chosen: ‘If you have questions about your order, press 1, If you would like advice about our wonderful products, press 2.’
- Combine the IVR with the Opening hours module. Then outside of opening hours callers won’t access the IVR but rather they will hear directly that the business is closed or go to voicemail.
- Start message
Welcome to [company name]
For [department] press 1
For [department] press 2
For others press 3
- Invalid choice
That choice was invalid, please try again.