Interactive voice response (IVR) is a technology that allows a computer to interact with humans through the use of voice and/or DTMF tones input via keypad. To most people, they will know of and have used these systems before, as they are common place.
In essence, it is the combination of 2 things, voice prompts and key inputs. You pre-record your voice prompts, outlining information and the options that are available, and your callers press the corresponding phone key to access the department/option they require. We also offer multi-layer IVR options as well, meaning that you can have multiple layers to your IVR system, if you should require it.
The first thing you will need when setting up your IVR is knowing what you want, such as where calls need to be directed and at what times of the day etc. To that end, it would be a good idea to write down your prompts, and plan the structure your system on paper, so you know if it makes sense, both to yourselves and your customers and also so you know what needs to be done.
Once you have your plan, you will need to record your prompts. You have a few options here. You can either record the prompts yourself, hire someone to record the prompts for you or, alternatively, ask us to record the prompts for you. We have access to both male and female professional voice over artists, who can record any message(s) you require. Prices are available on request.
Once the prompts have been created, they need to be uploaded onto the system. If you have sourced the recordings yourself, then please have them saved in .wav or .mp3 format, and send them through to ourselves. We will then upload the prompts and label them accordingly. We do have a store of generic prompts which you are welcome to use, but for most IVR scenarios, these will not be much use.
Once the prompts are in place, we can then begin creating the IVR system. This is all done within the selfcare portal. I will outline a basic example below, to help you get started...
Select the number you wish the IVR to reside on. Once selected, click on prompts. You will then be presented with the below options..
You will need to put your initial welcome/options prompt into the 'Post Connect' box. If you click on 'set' a second box, like the one above, will open, which gives you access to the prompts available in the system. Locate the prompt we uploaded for you, select it, and then click save at the bottom.
Once you have set your initial prompt, you then have to configure the IVR routing options, which is the most complicated part. As such, your written plan will come in handy at this point!
On the numbers page, click on forwarding, which will give you the call handling options for the number we are configuring. It will look like below..
The IVR options are all set within the 'Translates to' section. Based upon the options you specified within your greeting prompt, you will then need to add that number of options. If you need to add more, simply click on the 'add' text. Set the routing options as you need, and then click the 'options' text next to the routing option. This will open a new window, called advanced options. It is here you add the IVR routing instructions. It should look like below...
You will need to check the top box, and then enter the digit the caller would need to press to access this routing options in the box. You would also leave the last dropdown box set as above. You will then need to repeat the process for each of your routing options, adjusting the advanced options as above.
Once completed, ensure you click 'save' at the bottom of the page.
If all the options have been set correctly, your page will look similar to this (it will obviously be different, depending on the routing you have setup)...
The numbers listed after the routing option reflects the IVR input which then initiates the routing option. We would then advise testing the system fully, to ensure that the IVR is operating as you expect. If there are any issues, double check the options you have configured. If all is working properly, then congratulations! You have successfully configured your IVR.
A Video outlining the above is available below...
If you have any other issues or questions, please get in touch with us here.