IVR: Interactive Voice Response
Classify callers according to their needs and automatically route them to the most relevant agent. Set up one or multiple IVRs in minutes, and delight customers with fast and personalized service.
Connect customers with the most relevant agent
Design IVRs on a visual canvas. Deliver first-touchpoint resolutions by automatically routing inbound callers to the most relevant teams and agents.
With Smartflows Call Routing, IVRs can be embedded within IVRs to further specify a customer’s reason for calling. IVRs can also be customized based on the time of the day, helping teams streamline calls based on peak hours and downtime.
Dynamic visual editor
When setting up an IVR number, you’ll be prompted to add a message and waiting music. Choose from our curated selection of music, use our built in text to speech options, or upload your own custom audio files.
Music and audio messages
Add a message or waiting music when configuring an IVR. Choose from a curated selection of music, write a text-to-speech audio message, or upload your own custom audio files.
Hear it directly from our customers!
Thousands of companies trust Aircall's advanced IVR capabilities to optimize the efficiency of their teams.
Aron Lewin, Head of Traveller Direct at Jayride
"Because it’s such an intuitive platform, it’s much easier to make changes on the fly. Creating selections on the IVR, adding users, activating numbers, onboarding people…that stuff has made it easy to manage the whole system."
Trusted by 16,000+ companies
Build your first IVR with Smartflows Call Routing
Already using Aircall? Getting started with call routing is simple. Here’s exactly how to do it.
Use these features alongside IVR...
Set customized schedules to confirm exactly when each of your numbers are available to receive calls.
Direct calls to the correct teammates every time by customizing distribution and ring rules.
Connected to your Business Tools
Frequently asked questions
Interactive Voice Response (IVR) refers to the automated telephony menu that callers can interact with via their device keypad or through voice commands, before they speak with any human operator. The initial Interactive Voice Response audio introduction is either pre-recorded or computer generated with the purpose to assist, direct, or route calls without a live operator. IVR technology gathers the required information from a customer to route the call as quickly as possible to an agent in the correct department.
Basic IVR systems read the tones generated by each key on a phone keypad, known as dual-tone multi-frequency (DTMF) signals. The Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) recognizes certain combinations of frequencies as numbers, and carries out appropriate programmed responses to those numerical commands. The number 1, for example, produces both a 697-Hz and a 1209-Hz tone that's universally interpreted by the PSTN as a "1".
In more modern cloud IVR systems (such as the one you can enjoy access to with Aircall) the tech responds to spoken words through voice recognition software. Particular voice commands trigger actions such as a pre-recorded voice response, a call back option, or the correct routing of the call. It can also trigger a computerized text-to-speech (TTS) response, handy for when answers are numerical (e.g. queries about flight times or account balances).
Aircall helps organizations customize a sophisticated IVR system that works for them on any internet-connected device, providing technical support along the way.
Interactive Voice Response is handy for fast call routing when call volumes are high and your business operates through diverse departments. IVR is also incredibly useful to answer common simple questions from customers through programmed responses triggered by key strokes.
IVR can be accessed 24/7, another advantage when you want customers to be able to get help at any time of day, especially if your business operates throughout various time zones.
In general, IVR saves a lot of time and reduces call handling costs substantially. Only those customers that require help from a live agent are transferred, which saves customers from waiting in the call queue in order to be attended to, ultimately improving overall customer happiness. Agent productivity is boosted significantly in this way too.
IVR is multifunctional and can provide additional benefits such as acting as an electronic notification system (sending pre-programmed voice alerts).
IVR, alongside many automated systems, faces several challenges operating in the real world. The most obvious challenge of modern Interactive Voice Response is understanding the myriad of human languages and accents with advanced voice recognition abilities. Deviations in speech patterns are a continuous struggle for mainstream AI, but thankfully in this day and age many IVR systems have become extremely adept at voice recognition. There’s nothing quite as frustrating for a customer as being misunderstood or needing to repeat a command to a robotic IVR menu.
It can also be problematic the other way round; computerized voice prompts can be hard to understand by humans, as well. Cheap TTS software should be avoided, as should skimping on voice talent to record professional introductions. Customers don’t generally appreciate hearing a robotic voice, so a real human recording should be prioritized.
IVR menus are infinitely helpful to an organization that experiences a high volume of daily calls, but menus should be as short as possible to avoid wasting the customers time or confusing them with too many options. Overly long menus, coupled with even longer call queues are major pain points for customers calling into an IVR.
Finally, Interactive Voice Response should definitely be avoided in outbound cold-calling, or for sales calls in general.
For a customer-friendly Interactive Voice Response experience there shouldn’t be too many options in the IVR menu, nor subsequent steps to follow within those options. It’s not always easy to know which options are essential in the menu and which can be excluded, so to help with this, Aircall lets users “tag” calls by subject. Once a call has been reviewed, agents can manually apply tags corresponding to each IVR selection. Over time, the distribution of tags will reveal patterns relating to call frequency and volume.
Another useful improvement to IVR is to apply a call back feature at the end of your menu options. This way, your customers can go about their days instead of waiting on hold, relieving pressure on agents as well as preventing customer frustration.
Your company’s IVR should always be open for business, even outside of standard business hours. An automated assistant still has value to offer. Simple inquiries with concrete answers such as store hours, store locations, account balances, or basic shipping information can still be provided automatically, without the help of an agent. Even if a customer can’t find a resolution through the IVR after hours or during weekends, the software can direct them to the correct department’s (personalized) voicemail.