Voice Mail put simply In its simplest form a voice mail system is essentially just another phone answering system. They store their messages on a computer disk. Each user is assigned a mailbox where they only have access to his or her messages. They are also password protected so only assigned user can access messages in their mailbox. Voice mail systems also allow each user to create their own greeting message. This enables user to pass on instructions or important messages without taking call.
Voice mail systems can allow companies to redirect callers to other company employees. A voice mail system can answer calls rather than a member of staff; provide them with a common greeting, then guide caller to an appropriate department through a selection process. This is more commonly known as voice mail systems Auto Attendant feature.
Voice mail systems can merge fax, e-mail and voice messages into just one screen of a users PC. Some voice mail systems even offer voice recognition technology. A caller’s voice is recognised by voice mail system and system acts accordingly to pre-defined instructions. This is known as Interactive Voice Response.
What to look for in a voice mail system Voice mails systems are usually additional features of existing in house phone systems. When deciding which voice mail system to purchase you need to look at two key aspects of each one: number of user ports and hours of memory that is allocated to messages.
A good voice mail system will have enough ports to handle incoming calls without delay. If all ports are full, then any new callers will be delayed in system until a port becomes available. If a voice mail system has too many ports then its capacity is wasted. The trick is to balance number of ports with estimated number of potential customers.
The capacity of a voice mail system depends on hours of memory it has available. A system with a large number of ports and traffic may need a large number of hours, where as a system with low traffic will need fewer hours. The term hours of memory refers to capacity of a voice mail system to store any messages.
Selecting a voice mail system, check list
1. How do you use your voice mail? This depends on how heavily your staff will be using voice mail system. A port is in use whenever voice mail system picks up a call, someone leaves, someone is transferred, or whenever a message is picked up by a user. All these factors need to be taken into account when looking at suitable voice mail systems.
2. Many older phone systems may not support a modern voice mail system. Unfortunately many business phone systems that are above five years old will not be able to fully support a fully featured voice mail system. The only solution would be to replace your phone system with a more modern one.