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The rise in popularity of professional voicemail greetings brings with it a new set of terms and phrases. To help you navigate through this sea of terminology, On Hold Company has assembled a glossary of 11 common phrases associated with professional voicemail greetings.

If you aren’t already familiar with these terms, be sure to read on. You’re likely to encounter them when you navigate the world of professional voicemail greetings.

#1: Voice over internet protocol:

Commonly known as ‘voice over IP’ or VoIP, voice over internet protocol is a technology involving sophisticated computer software which enables verbal communication through the internet. It is the conduit for most professional voicemail greetings today.

#2: Interactive voice response:

Also known as IVR, this technology enables a computer to interact with humans through the use of voice and tones via a keypad. IVR systems are programmed to respond with pre-recorded or dynamically-generated responses to take input, process it and produce a result.

#3: Auto attendant:

An auto attendant is a virtual receptionist, which automatically transfers callers. Often employing a menu system, auto attendants can overlap with interactive voice response systems to route calls to mobile phones, VOIP phones or even landlines.

#4: Call flow simplicity:

This is the process of designing inbound call flow so that calls are routed efficiently to the correct department or person.

#5: General voicemail greeting:

This is the default voicemail greeting if no other greeting type is recorded. It most often consists of a welcome and/or informational statement and can also include a directory.

#6: Internal voicemail greeting:

Most often applicable to large companies, this is used to greet fellow employees who call your department from within your company.

#7: External voicemail greeting:

This greeting is used for those who call from outside your company. Your telephone system’s automated attendant may use a general company greeting that all external callers will hear.

#8: The ‘temporary’ or ‘out of office’ voicemail greeting:

This greeting is used when the entire department is unavailable, say for a department meeting or after-hours. Note: most voicemail systems feature an expiration date and time setting so you can ‘set it and forget it.’

#9: Holiday closure greeting:

This greeting is similar to the after-hours message but indicates that your business is closed for the holiday. It often includes the option to leave a voicemail message and sometimes, a number for emergencies.

#10: On the phone or busy voicemail greeting:

This greeting is used to communicate that all extensions in the department are busy with other callers.

#11: Employee voicemails:

These are personalized voicemails that encourage callers to leave a message for a specific employee.