Magpi now allows users to collect information by means of IVR (interactive voice response). This article will explain how create an IVR form in Magpi.  

If you have ever created a Magpi mobile data collection form, then you already know 90% of what is needed, because IVR systems use the same forms as you might already be using with the Magpi mobile app.  If you don't know how to create a Magpi form, you may find it helpful to watch our Magpi Data Collection Basics video.

Magpi IVR systems use the same form designer as any other Magpi form, but the interface for the respondent is very different.  The respondent receives a phone call, and during the phone call:

  1. Magpi speaks a question or statement
  2. The respondent replies with a number

IMPORTANT: IVR responses can be single or multiple-digit numbers. 

Question Types that Apply to IVR

Some Magpi question types simply do not apply to an IVR activity.  For example: GPS questions and photo questions.  The most relevant question types for IVR are:

  1. labels – these are "info only" and allow you to say something important to the user without expecting any response.  Question 1, below, is an example of a label.
  2. radio button – these are multiple choice questions that allow the user to "choose one response only".  As you can see in the example question 2 below, you MUST indicate numeric codes for your responses in the "code" column of the Response Options table. Those codes are the numbers the user will press in response to your question.
  3. numeric – you can ask numeric questions in Magpi, including range limits if you like.

Example: Collecting Satisfaction Information from a Customer or Beneficiary


As an example: suppose that your have provided some good or service to a person at your store, and as part of the transaction you obtained their phone number.  You can then use Magpi IVR to perform followup activities with that person.  Below is an example.  Note that there is no "data collector" when IVR is used: there is just the Magpi system, speaking the questions, and the respondent on the phone pressing numeric answers.

Basic Form for Use with IVR (including Skip Logic on question 2)

You'll notice a few things in the IVR form above:

  1. Notice that consent is established in the first question, by instructing the user that they can hang up the phone if they do not consent.
  2. Like iSMS, IVR allows for skip logic: in question 2 you can see that if the user responds with 1, the system will skip to the last question – but if they answer with 2, the system will read question 3.
  3. Question 4 is simply a courteous way to end the conversation.  Even though the data collection is done, it would be rude to simply have Magpi hang up without some type of closing words.

Deploying Your Magpi IVR Form

Deploying a Magpi IVR form is very easy and is done by opening your form in Magpi and then navigating to the Share tab and then to the Interactive Voice Response sub-tab.  Just enter the recipient numbers, specify the timing, and then click the "Initiate IVR Sharing" button.  Within 60 seconds of the specified timing, the calls will be automatically made.

Languages Available for IVR

In the screenshot above, showing the Share tab, you'll notice an "IVR language" pulldown menu.  Currently, the 17 available languages for Magpi IVR are:

Notice that for several languages you can choose among various accents (e.g. UK or Indian or American English).

Watch and Listen to Magpi IVR in Action

This audio/video file lets you listen to someone listening to and responding to the IVR form shown above.



Once the respondent has finished, the data they provided is in the Magpi data tab online, just like with any other Magpi form: