Voicemail: My customer wants to return to simpler times

Some days I think they just lie awake at night to find things to complain about…

My customer wants me to address the “heaviness” of the voicemail.
The prompts come too slowly and the voice is disjointed, there are too many prompts, etc.

They need new messages and old messages, press 7 to delete, 0 for envelope information, etc. very much like a std AT&T Cell phone system or even the old PageNet system.

So my question is - is the VM system configurable at that level or do I need to tell them to just live with it?

You can customize it within the limits of:-


Mean and lean or nanny style, your choice.

I believe he’s referring more to being able to modify the actual menu prompts once you log into your voicemail box via the phone. Sounds like there are just too many prompts for his user to want to deal with and really wants only a couple options and not all of them.

My suggestion, first they are complaining about heaviness, prompts being to slow and voice disjointed. Have you experienced this with any of your own VM or have you tested to see if you can replicate the issue? What kind of network/Internet does this user have? Secondly, unless this user is paying you a decent amount of money (ie just not a single line) or is just one user on an entire system where all the other users are getting along just fine. My answer would be “just live with it”.

Otherwise you’ll be pulling your hair out over something that isn’t broken for a user who is more akin to watching your grandparents try to work a tablet.

Oh, I can see what they’re talking about in the product… I just didn’t think it was a big deal. You can hear the disjointed voice {press-one-for} --slight pause-- {new-messages} and you can tell the program is putting together 2 (probably 3) segments to make a message, rather than having someone record “press one for new messages” as a seamless one… but as I said - for ME, you really have to have all your important issues fixed before that becomes a problem. Thing is, they are the customer and I’m not. The VM system on my AT&T smart phone isn’t half as feature-rich as the Asterisk VM but it’s faster, easier to use and gets me in and out of VM twice as fast as the Asterisk.

That said – Yes, I wanted to REMOVE prompts and folders and things that we just don’t care about, don’t need and don’t want. If it can’t be done, it can’t be done.

The other suggestion about VM to Email made me chuckle.

This customer takes credit cards on their web site so we have to be PCI compliant. The first time we were audited the bank sent out a someone to do an in-person inspection. During the audit we got to her questions about how we secure our wireless network.

I told her we don’t have a wireless network.

She stopped dead in her tracks. Blinking eyes like a deer in the headlights.

First she told me that her survey doesn’t allow for that answer and then she indicated that there is no way a plumbing parts wholesaler can be in business without a wireless network.

Maybe we’re stuck in the 1980’s but the truth is I can wait until I get back from the can to get my voicemails. I can even watch a single channel of my DirecTV for so long that the box thinks I must be dead. LOL

There are settings… a lot of settings…



Our solution to this was to edit the sound files to remove references to unneeded options. The menu is one sound file (vm-opts I think?) and you can just cut and paste in your editing program of choice. If there are whole files you want gone, just replace them with a fraction of a second of silence.

That could work…

For your reference:


You can get creative with something like audacity or you can get it re-recorded by Allison Smith to your liking (making sure your prompts remain uniform) http://theivrvoice.com/