Micro Business Automated Phone System

TwHello is pleased to release a workflow template for a simple automated phone system.  This template is perfect for very small businesses that want to project a larger presence.  Among other things, this application routes calls, records voice messages and sends out alert messages.  The workflow is now included in every TwHello account for unrestricted use by TwHello users.  For example, use it as (1) a quick start guide for training, (2) an automated phone system for your businesses or (3) a base for your own solution to sell to your clients.

To try a demo of the automated assistant, call (949) 430-6602.

Application Features

The automated phone system begins with a welcome message and a list of menu options to access the following features:

[1] General Information
A simple message about the business, web site, email, etc.

[2] Employee Directory
A list of employees or departments. Making a selection by pressing a key will forward the call to the respective phone number.

[3] Get a Quote
Forwards the call to another phone number.  New business is job #1.  Makes this number one that is likely to be answered.

[4] Leave a Message
Records a message from the caller and sends a URL of a MP3 file to a number of your choice.  Of course, the URL and transcript are available in Twilio’s admin.

[5] Frequently Asked Questions
Lists a series of questions and, depending on the caller’s selection, plays the appropriate answer .  This is similar to the Employee Directory and can really be a list of anything.

[6] Direction to Our Office
Sends an SMS message with an address to the caller’s phone.  This address is generally converted to a link by the messaging client that opens a map application.  You could always send a shortened link to a Google map.

[0] Message Emergency Support
Sends an SMS message to an emergency contact who is available 24/7 for quick responses.

Workflow Construction

The flow of the call is orchestrated with our drag-n-drop interface.  The call begins with the “WelcomeMenu” element that is set as the Home Element.  It lists the menu options and requests the caller’s input.  The following “ProcessSelection” element routes the call based on that input to one of the seven features.  Once a features is complete, the “ContinueOrHangup” element gives the caller the option to hear the menu options again.

Workflow Screenshot

Screenshot of the Auto Phone System Workflow.

The logic and output of each element is determined by the JavaScript code “bound” to each element.

Here is an example of the TwHello JavaScript for the “EmployeeDirectory” element:

function doEmployeeDirectoryResponse(req, resp) {
    var verbs = [];
    for( var i in directory )
        verbs.push(new Twilio.Verb.Say("Press "+ (+i+1) +" for "+ directory[i].name +". "));
    verbs.push(new Twilio.Verb.Say("Enter your selection or press 0 for the main menu. "));
    var gather = new Twilio.Verb.Gather().withNumDigits(1).withVerbs(verbs);
    var noResp = new Twilio.Verb.Say("Your selection was not understood.");
    var redir = new Twilio.Verb.Redirect();
    resp.send(gather, noResp, redir);

As you can see, our JavaScript library mirrors the TwiML docs closely, with a few exceptions.  You can review the JavaScript library documentation here.

Getting Started

Now that you are excited about your new automated phone system, let’s set it up!  Follow this link to open our step-by-step quick start guide to get you up-and-running in minutes.


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