An interactive voice recording (IVR), also known as a phone tree, is a voice recording with a menu of numbered options which allow your customers to select the department or individual they want to be connected with. If you haven't set up an IVR for your own company, chances are you've been on the customer end of an IVR. After calling into a company's main number, a recording gives you the options to "Press 1 for Sales, press 2 for Support," and so on. For a live example of what this sounds like, try calling Kixie's main line, (855) 505-4943, to hear our IVR menu. 

Video Walkthrough

How to Set Up an IVR in Kixie

Design your IVR

First, plan out the options you want to have on your IVR. You can layer multiple IVRs with Kixie, meaning you can have a main menu along with one or many submenus. To visualize where the "branches" of this phone tree will lead, it's often helpful to sketch out the options on a piece of paper in the form of a flow chart. 

The options on your IVR can lead to an Agent, a Ring Group, another IVR, or a Call Queue:

  • A Ring Group routes calls to a group of agents or external devices, which can be set to ring in a specific order, in a round robin, or simultaneously.
  • A Call Queue places incoming calls in a queue so that agents fielding a high volume of incoming calls can answer them in the order they were received. A queue can play a recording with a caller's place in the queue, their estimated wait time, and even offer the option to leave a voicemail or request a call back.
  • An IVR option leading to an Agent will ring to that agent in the same manner as incoming calls to their direct number.
  • An IVR option can also lead to another IVR, allowing you to have submenus for different departments.

Create your IVR

Once you've decided how you want your IVR to function;

  1. Go to the "Manage" tab on the menu bar on the left hand side of your Kixie dashboard
  2. Select "Inbound"
  3. Select "IVRs"
  4. Click the blue "+ ADD" button on the right side of the page

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In the "Add New IVR" pop-up, you will need to do the following:

  1. Name the IVR 
  2. Create the IVR greeting:
    • Choose the greeting type. There are 3 options for your greeting:
      • Text-to-Speech: an automated voice reads out the menu options you type in the text box below (it is automatically filled with "Default Message." Just delete this and enter your own).
      • MP3: upload an .mp3 file of a prerecorded voice message
      • Record Now: record your greeting right here in the Kixie dashboard.
  3. Select whether or not to allow extension dialing. Agents’ extensions can be viewed in the Manage Agents section, or in the directory in your dialer.
  4. Select a No Answer Option. This is the action which will be taken automatically if the caller does not select one of the menu options.

Note: If you need to exit the IVR at any time while you are setting it up, click the Save button first to avoid losing your progress.



Route your IVR options

After you've decided on the basic settings, you'll need to set up how each option is routed:

  1. Navigate to the "Routing" tab, which you will find on the left hand side of the "Add New IVR" pop-up
  2. Click the Screen_Shot_2021-06-22_at_4.54.21_PM.png button to add as many options as you need. (You can change the numbers of the options on the left side if they don't already correspond the number options on your IVR greeting. The number options will default to 1, 2, 3, 4, and so on.)
  3. Select the Action (Go to Agent, Group, IVR, or Queue) and the specific Agent/Group/IVR/Queue from the dropdown menus
  4. Click Save



Assign a number to your IVR

Lastly, you will need to assign a number to your IVR (unless the IVR will be accessed through an option on another IVR). To assign a number to the IVR:

  1. Select "Numbers" from the Manage section in the menu on the left side of the dashboard
  2. Click the +ADD button to purchase a number for the IVR.  (If you already own the number you want to allocate, simply click the pencil icon Screen_Shot_2021-06-22_at_5.49.10_PM.png to the right of the number and allocate it through the popup window)
  3. In the "Number For" dropdown menu, select "IVR"
  4. Select the IVR you want the number to be assigned to from the "Select IVR" dropdown menu
  5. Select the country you want your number to be from
  6. Enter the 3 digit area code you would like for your number (Do not include the country code. For countries outside the US/Canada, leave off any zeros that would normally precede the first few digits of the number code after the country code has been removed.)
  7. Set SMSable to Either
  8. Select Toll Free or Local (US/Canada toll free numbers are $5/mo. and US/Canada local numbers are just $1/mo.)
  9. Click the SEARCH button
  10. Click the BUY button next to the number you would like to purchase


Now your IVR should be ready to go! Call the number you just assigned to your IVR to test it out, and test each of the menu options to make sure they are all routed correctly.