What to expect when sending a voice notification

Section: Notifications


How do voice calls work? What can I expect when a voice call is placed?


  • All versions of xMatters


The following steps occur when xMatters calls you with an alert:

  1. A call is initiated and sent to the xMatters voice proxy for processing. This is managed by xMatters through API calls in the background.
  2. xMatters dials the number and waits for a response
  3. xMatters automatically detects if a live person or voicemail answers the call.
    • If the intended recipient answers the call, xMatters plays a greeting and the alert.
    • If the notification is urgent, xMatters may skip the greeting and play the notification.
    • If the call is answered by voicemail, by default xMatters leaves a message with callback information.
  4. Depending on voicemail handling options, xMatters may also play the content of the message with or without providing callback information, or disconnect without playing a message.
  5. If the call is not answered, xMatters retries a number of times.  Depending on your user and group details, xMatters attempts to contact you via another device or attempts to contact the next user in your group or team.


Any calls placed during an event are sent to our voice proxy which uses an API call to initiate a voice call. Our downstream provider places the call using the caller ID configured in xMatters. Telephone carriers route xMatters calls the same as all other telephone calls, and pass back a series of calls status information which is logged by xMatters.

When a call is answered, xMatters tries to discern between a live person and voicemail by:

  • Listening for the pattern of a person talking.
  • Listening for a voicemail tone.
  • Listening for a large gap after a greeting message.

When detecting voicemail, xMatters evaluates the initial greeting which is generally longer than a simple "hello" used when most people answer the phone. Answering systems that start with "Hello" and a pause may be detected as a live person. To avoid this, configure your voicemail system to play a longer greeting if possible.

If a message tone is detected, xMatters assumes that the call has been answered by voicemail and leaves a message based on voicemail configuration options.

Silence and gaps help determine if there is a person on the line. If the gaps are too short in a voicemail greeting this may cause the system to detect it as a live person. Gaps can be configured in xMatters; for most scenarios, the default settings are adequate but can be changed depending on the situation.

In order to change voice detection settings:

  1. Log in as a Company Supervisor:
  2. Click on Admin > Company Details.
  3. Edit the settings in the Phone Prompt, Phone Extensions, CPA Parameters, CPA Events, and Beep Detection sections.

If you are not familiar with these settings, review the resources below or consult with Customer Support before changing any values.



Define Company Details

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