Best Way to Get an Emergency Alert Delivered and Recognized

Best Way to Get an Emergency Alert Delivered and Recognized

People pay more attention to voice calls these days than email. A phone ringing gets the attention of the person that needs to be alerted in an emergency. The reason is that email and other forms of text messaging have swamped us to the point we do not pay attention to them, anymore. A phone ringing still makes people pay attention. They are loud and rare.

In the John Brandon article Why Millennials Don’t Like to Make Phone Calls, he states as one of the many reasons phone calls are rare is;

In a phone call, there’s a chance the person on the other end of the line might have an opinion.

An alert phone call is not a conversation. It is the delivery of critically important information. A phone call with a voice message is the perfect delivery method for time-sensitive critical information.

Critical Alerts from Applications

Implementing critical alerts delivered from business applications is a major effort. Sending a message from monitoring software or directly from an IoT device to a phone requires specialized hardware and software solutions to be installed in the client’s central data center. Connections to smart devices, CRM, PCS or ERP systems need to go through complex API’s or propriety software gateways

However, a cloud-based communications solution such as EmailToVoice.Net makes this all as easy as sending an email. The EmailToVoice.Net service does the hard stuff. It converts the text of the email message into a genuine-sounding voice (Text to Speech), then dials the phone, handles voice mail, and much more. All of this is done without the need to install hardware or use APIs. There are not even any monthly fees.

How EmailToVoice.Net Works

All you have to do is subscribe to the EmailToVoice.Net service and then make the TO field in the Email look something like 5551234567@tts.message-service.org

The recipient will receive a call on their phone. The text in the email is converted to a nice-sounding voice. If the recipient answers, they will hear the message right away. If they do not answer, the message will be left on their voice mail system. You can even leave a different message if the call goes to voice mail! There are many mission-critical features in the service.

Industrial IoT Needs To Send Alerts

An IoT device is any device connected to the Internet. In an enterprise environment, monitoring these devices is commonly done through Monitoring Software, like viewLINC, or SolarWinds to name just a couple – there are many.

These IoT devices need to communicate with people through alerts and integration with mission-critical applications. The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) needs to be given a voice. An IIoT device that has only the ability to send an email must now be enabled to dial a phone. The number may be repair truck or used to wake people in the middle of the night or cut through all the mundane communications received during the regular business day.

Since people are not making phone calls as much as they used to, the voice phone call now becomes the perfect way to deliver a critical alert to an individual.

Supply Chains Require Communications

Supply Chain communication is critical to the success of the Supply chain and its stakeholders. The importance of effective communications for internal stakeholders and external suppliers cannot be overstated. An enterprise must have a well-planned communication strategy to ensure the resilience of the Supply Chain.

As part of a Supply Chain communication plan, multiple channels and methods should be taken into consideration,. An alternative communication channel is a voice phone call. This is an effective communication channel in regular Supply Chain processes because phone calls get the participant’s attention. Supply Chain Communications is critical to the resilience of critical processes. Using multiple channels during the process is imperative to success.

The fact that Phone calls are rare has made them an excellent communication channel to convey important information and emergency alerts. We are inundated with text communications coming from SMS, Email, and a multitude of chat Instant Messaging platforms. To cut through all of that noise with an important alert, a loud and reliable channel needs to be used. That channel is the common voice phone call.

How to send an Alert to a Phone

EmailToVoice.Net provides the ability to make a phone call using any email interface. This can be tested using a personal email mailbox. However, the production use of this capability is by utilizing the email messaging capability within the monitoring software or business application.

How to Use EmailToVoice.Net

First, a user should subscribe to EmailToVoice.net. A free trial is available.

FROM Field

The Email must be sent from the same Email address as was specified during the free trial subscription process. A Send-Only Email address can be added later for the production implementation.

TO Field

The TO field should specify the phone number to be dialed.

The TO field would look something like 2145551783@tts.message-service.org. (if the number is not a USA or Canadian number, then the TO field would look something like +6155551243@tts.message-service.org)

The number can be any phone number in the world, with some exceptions due to international regulations, and does not have to be preregistered.

SUBJECT Field

The SUBJECT field can be anything brief. It is used for reporting. Optionally, the Subject field can also be made part of the voice message.

Content of Email

The content of the Email is converted to a pleasant sounding American English voice. (Leave at least 4 lines after the content of the email and before the email signature, so the Email signature is not converted to voice.) There are additional dialects to accommodate other languages or accents.

Send the Email

That’s it. The EmalToVoice.net service will dial the number, play the voice rendition of the email content, handle voicemail, etc.

Advanced Features

There are many advanced features of EmailToVoice.Net. Those features will be covered in future posts. So, subscribe to our blog and stay updated. We also provide some very useful information in our Blog regarding Industrial Internet of Things, Monitoring Software, and much more.

Most Commonly Used Features of EmailToVoice.Net

Most Commonly Used Features of EmailToVoice.Net

You have become a user of EmailToVoice.Net. So, now what?

First Things First

Let’s make sure we all understand the basics of how EmailToVoice.Net works. Our cloud messaging service converts the text in the email message to a genuine-sounding voice or formatted SMS text message and then delivers that message to a phone anywhere in the world without preregistrations. No need to install hardware or use APIs.

To send a message, the Email Fields would look something like this:

TO: phonenumber@NNN.message-service.org  (The recipient’s cell phone, NNN can be TTS, SMS, LinkInSMS, Voice or FAX)
FROM: emailaddress@yourcompanydomain.com  (The authorized email address to send messages through our service)
SUBJECT: Anything  (Used as a job name for reporting purposes, but can be used as the message or part of the message)
CONTENT (For TTS, this will be converted to a voice message. For SMS, this becomes the text message)

Those are the fundamentals. So, now let’s cover what more we can do to meet your enterprise business needs. (Note that this is not an inclusive list. These are the most commonly used advanced features.)

Send a Voice or SMS message from Monitoring Software, CRM, ERP, PCS, or any business application

Integrating communications with business applications is the most common use of EmailToVoice.Net. Applications can send an email, but it is so important in today’s sensory-filled world to get the important messages out as a voice phone call or an SMS text message. Merely change the recipient’s email address to the format of the TO as described above, and you are now sending live communications from your applications without the need for APIs, coding, etc.

What Email Addresses are Authorized?

The main email address specified during the Subscription process on the account can always send messages through our service. That email address also receives reports, password changes, and billing:

You can request us to add an additional email address to your account that will be authorized to only send messages through our service. Just Contact Us.

There are many security features to identify items such as a whitelist of IP addresses. Let us know what you need.

What Phone Numbers Can I Send To?

You can send messages to any number in the world. If the number is in the USA or Canada, then the country code is not needed. When the number is outside of the USA and Canada, then specify phonenumber in the TO field to be something like +6155555555, where 61 is the country code. (Note that there are some global regulations that may exclude some phone numbers.)

Can I Have Only Part of the Message Converted to Voice or SMS?

You can parse the email message by specifying where the important part of the text starts and ends. This eliminates the irrelevant parts of your email, such as the top Header part, and the bottom of the email, such as the Signature, leaving only the important part of the message. Set these parameters in the Customer Portal / My Details / Change Details. It is great to keep the message short and more succinct.

Can I Set a Window of Time for Delivering the Messages?

If you want to send alerts out to your staff as phone calls or SMS text messages only during a specific time of day, you can specify the times in Customer Portal / My Details / Change Details / Email To Broadcast: Active Window.

Can I have the Sending Number be From My Company?

You can have the Caller ID for TTS and Voice messages be from a number that you own. Just Contact Us. It is important that you are able to provide proof that your company owns the phone number. We cannot guarantee that the Caller ID will display in all regions of the USA and globally because carriers throughout the US and the world have to meet varying regulations regarding Caller ID.

You can specify an SMS Sender ID number in Customer Portal / My Details / Change Details. If you are not in the USA and Canada, you can specify a number you own. Within the USA and Canada, you will need to request a number (a Long Code) from us and we will update your account with that number. There will be a minimal monthly charge for that Long Code.

Can I Send to Multiple Destinations?

There are several ways to send to more than one destination.

Multiple Destinations in the TO Field

Multiple destinations can be specified in the TO field by separating them with a “#”. IE;:
2145551234#2145551235#2145551236@tts.message-service.org
OR, multiple destinations can be entered as multiple full email addresses:
“2145551234@tts.message-service.org, 2145551235@tts.message-service.org

NOTE: When stringing destinations in the TO field of the Email, there is a standard general length restriction of about 64 characters for the TO field.
NOTE: The type of messages, such as TTS or SMS, cannot be mixed in a single message.

Multiple Destinations in the Email Content

Multiple Destinations can be In the body of the message in the following format:
<Numbers>
2145551234
2145551235
2145551236
</Numbers>

NOTE: The destination phone numbers are included in the body of the message. So, the TO field should be: msg@tts.message-service.org

Multiple Destinations Using a Pre-Loaded List

Multiple Destinations can be through pre-setup lists by using the format:
<Lists>
First ListName
Second ListName
</Lists>

NOTE: These lists are created and loaded through the Customer Portal
NOTE: The TO field should be: msg@tts.message-service.org

Can I Have the Subject Field be Part of the Message?

The Subject field of the email coming into our service is always used as the Job Name for reporting purposes. However, sometimes the Subject Field has valuable information in it. So, you can choose to concatenate the Subject field to the message or have only the Subject field be the entire message. You specify this in Customer Portal / My Details / Change Details.

Can I have an SMS Message Deliver Large Amounts of Formatted Data?

An Aert text message sometimes needs to deliver a large amount of formatted data (HTML). This can be done by sending the SMS message with the TO field as phonenumber@LinkInSMS.message-service.org. For instance, the formatted data may be the section of a user manual on how to perform the repair for the failed device. Our ‘Enterprise SMS’ feature, which uses LinkInSMS, is explained in more detail in our post called “Sending Enterprise Text Using a Simple Email Interface “.

How Does Reporting Work?

Every time a message is sent from your account through our service, the main email address receives a detailed email providing the status of the message. This can be changed in your account so that the main email address receives messages only if there are exceptions, such as a failed job. Just  Contact Us.

You can specify additional emails to receive reports, or specify that no email reports are sent at all.

Is There A Customer Portal To View Job History?

We have mentioned the Customer Portal previously regarding Account Details and Lists. However, it has much more, such as ‘View All Jobs’ to see the jobs history on any date range you choose.

In Summary

There are many advanced features of EmailToVoice.Net. These are merely a few of them. We love to share our many years of experience in this industry and provide easy no-code solutions for your workflow communications needs. Do not hesitate to Contact Us.

Setting Message Delivery Times In EmailToVoice.Net

Setting Message Delivery Times In EmailToVoice.Net

EmailToVoice.Net provides the user with the ability to set a window of time for the delivery of voice phone calls and SMS messages using any email interface.

This feature is extremely useful for departments that need their staff to be alerted by voice or SMS when they are off their primary working hours. When staff are at their desks, they may not need voice and SMS alerts. However, when the staff is not on their primary shifts, the messages must get the attention of the staff members. To get that attention, the messages should be delivered as a telephone call and/or SMS text message. Email is not an effective way to get the attention of essential support staff.

We created a user option so an active window of time can be designated for voice phone calls or SMS text messages to be delivered by EmailToVoice.Net.

Although setting a window of time for voice or SMS messages to be delivered can be accomplished by using no-code alternatives like Microsoft Power Automate, we provide this ability without the need for any third-party capability. The customer merely needs to sign-in to the Customer Portal and modify these parameters in the ‘My Details’ section.

Easily configure your delivery start time and end time

Email to Voice Active Window

The parameters in Customer Portal / My Details provide the ability to block or allow the messages to go through. The parameters allow the user to set different rules for the Weekend (Saturday and Sunday) and the Weekdays (Monday through Friday). The time can either be blocked or allowed. The time is according to the timezone set in the account under My Details.

If you have any questions about this feature of EmailToVoice.Net, please contact us so we can help you meet your mission-critical business communications requirements.

We have recently added other features that assist our customers in adding workflow processes to their business communications needs. An example is designate the beginning and the end of a voice or text message sent using email. This is valuable when you want to send only the pertinent information in your alerts and mission-critical messages.

The customer can designate the beginning and end of all messages by logging into the Customer Portal and then going to My Details / Change My Details. The fields in the account details are

Email to Broadcast-Start of Message Text:

Email to Broadcast-End of Message Text:

How EmailtoVoice.Net works

EmailToVoice.Net is rich in features while being simple and effective to use for business communications and alerts. We transform an email message into a phone call or an SMS message with no need to program APIs or install any hardware or software.

For making a voice phone call, you merely make the TO field in the Email you are sending to look something like 5551234567@tts.message-service.org (international calls require a +CountryCode in front of the local number). The recipient will receive a call on their phone. The text in the email is converted to a nice-sounding voice. If the recipient answers, they will hear the message right away. If they do not answer, the message will be left on their voice mail system. You can even leave a different message if the call goes to voice mail.

You can also send an Enterprise SMS, FAX or prerecorded Voice Message from an email program interface, like from an application, Internet of Things device (IoT / M2M), or through your CRM and Dispatch System.

Contact Us if we can provide further assistance in helping you meet your business communications requirements.

Supply Chain is Supported by Multiple Communications Channels

Supply Chain is Supported by Multiple Communications Channels

Supply Chain communication is critical to the success of the Supply chain and its stakeholders. The importance of effective communications for internal stakeholders and external suppliers cannot be overstated. An enterprise must have a well-planned communication strategy to ensure the resilience of the Supply Chain.

As stated in The Stream by River Logic

Organize a Communication Chain

A chain of communication is as straightforward as it sounds, but it is important to establish the expected flow of information within a business. The chain can be as simple as the chain of command, but all members must understand what is expected of them when they receive a message — including what messages should be forwarded, who they should be forwarded to, and how they should be delivered.

As part of a Supply Chain communication plan, multiple channels and methods should be taken into consideration,. As an example, Social Networks should be explored as a ubiquitous alternative in the exceptional case of normal communication channels being interrupted during the time of a crisis. The resilience and variety of Social Networks is an excellent complement to ensuring the resilience of a Global Supply Chain. During recent global catastrophes, we have seen Social Media technologies effectively used in grassroots disaster response. These successful grassroots efforts have brought the value of global social networks to the attention of governments and global enterprises.

Effective Voice Phone Call

An additional communication channel is a voice phone call. This is an effective communication channel in regular Supply Chain processes because phone calls get the participant’s attention. SMS text messaging can also be an effective method of alerts or regular dissemination of timely information.

The challenge to incorporating a voice phone call as part of the regular Supply Chain processes is the cost and effort to have business applications integrate with PSTN phone communications.

In the past, implementation could be a major effort. Sending a message from an application to a phone required specialized hardware and software to be installed. Connections to CRM, PCS or ERP systems were through complex APIs or software gateways.

Providing a voice phone call as integrated communications channels is now easy. With our cloud messaging service called EmailtoVoice.net, all that is needed to send a voice message from an application is the ability to send an email. Email communication is common in enterprise applications; and also can be found in many IoT devices.

EmailToVoice.Net can make a phone call as easy as sending an email. Mission-critical processes that exist in all stages of the Supply Chain already have an email capability.

How EmailtoVoice.Net works

We transform an email message into a phone call.

You make the TO field in the Email you are sending to look something like 5551234567@tts.message-service.org (international calls require a +CountryCode in front of the local number)

The recipient will receive a call on their phone. The text in the email is converted to a nice sounding voice. If the recipient answers, they will hear the message right away. If they do not answer, the message will be left on their voice mail system. You can even leave a different message if the call goes to voice mail.

You can also send an SMS, FAX or prerecorded Voice Message from an email program interface, like from an application, Internet of Things device (IoT / M2M) or through your CRM and Dispatch System.

Multiple Communication Channels is Critical

Supply Chain Communications is critical to the resilience of critical processes. Using multiple channels during the process is imperative to success. The communication channels of the voice phone call and SMS messaging should be incorporated for mission-critical real-time alerts and informational messaging to the stakeholders.

 

Launch of New Customer Portal by EmailToVoice.Net

Launch of New Customer Portal by EmailToVoice.Net

We are excited to announce the launch of the new EmailToVoice.Net Customer Portal. The Portal will be available to the customers of EmailToVoice.Net on Monday, March 16th at 7:00 AM EST. This capability has been requested by the customers of EmailToVoice.Net and we are pleased to deliver.

The customers of EmailToVoice.Net will be able to securely login to the Customer Portal at any time and see detailed information about the jobs submitted through their customer account. Here is a summary of the Portal’s advanced features:

    • View All Jobs: The customer can view summary and detailed information on messages that have been sent through EmailToVoice.Net. Date ranges can be specified to review monthly, weekly or daily activity and even a specific job number.
    • Manage Personal Lists: The customer can setup lists, which are then referenced by the LISTS tag in the content of the email for sending TTS or SMS messages to groups of recipients.
    • New Broadcast: The customer will be able to send a TTS, SMS and even email messages to one or more recipients directly from the Portal
    • Quick SMS: A customer will be able to send a Quick SMS message, one-way or two way, to one or more recipients directly from the Portal
    • Manage Opt-Outs: The customer can specify a phone number that is never to be sent through the customer’s account. This is useful for phone numbers that have changed and should no longer be used.
    • My Details: The customer will be able to change certain fields within their account, such as company address, email address or phone number. This includes the customer’s account password.

Customer Considerations to Access the Portal

    • Access to the login of the Portal will be available as a Menu tab on EmailToVoice.Net or can be accessed directly by using Portal.EmailToVoice.Net.
    • The username will now be prefixed with etv/. The old username prefix of us/ will be retired on March 16th at 7:00 AM EST.
    • If the customer does not know their password, the customer will click on ‘Forgot Password’ on the Login page of the Portal the first time they use the Portal.
    • This portal is for all customers on the USA EmailToVoice.Net site. This includes our International customers that had a username prefixed with us/. However, the username prefix of us/ will be retired on March 16, 2020 at 7:00 AM EST and will become etv/username.

EmailToVoice.Net User Portal Login

Background: How EmailToVoice.Net Works

For those that are not familiar with EmailToVoice.Net, this is an example of the value our cloud messaging service brings to enterprise customers.

After subscribing to EmailToVoice.Net, you can make a phone call or send an SMS by sending just an email. Just make the TO field look something like 5551234567@TTS.message-service.org or 5551234567@SMS.message-service.org. (International calls made outside of the USA and Canada should have a + country code in front, like +61555123456@tts.message-service.org)

For a voice call, the text in the email is converted to a nice sounding voice (TTS – Text-to-Speech). If the recipient answers, they will hear the message right away. If they do not answer, the message will be left on their voice mail system. You can even leave a different message if the call goes to voice mail. There are many mission-critical features in our service.

We deliver Text To Speech message or SMS text message to phones with no need to install special APIs, hardware or software.

Why Send a Voice Phone Call Alert

Phone calls get people’s attention when you need them to act on a critical event. When you send an email, it just does not get the necessary level of attention for important information.

Email is the typical mode of communication for alerts from the monitoring software, CRM or other business applications. But, few of us immediately respond to email, especially after-hours. A phone call, however, will get our attention at all hours of the day or night.

Alerts for IoT Devices

An IoT device is any device connected to the Internet. In an enterprise environment. Monitoring these devices is commonly done through Monitoring Software.

These IoT devices need to communicate with people through alerts and integration with mission-critical applications. The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) needs to be given a voice. An IIoT device that has only the ability to send an email must now be enabled to dial a phone. The voice phone call may be sent to a repair truck, or an emergency call in the middle of the night, or used as a means to cut through all the mundane communications received during the regular business day.

In any case, a phone call is an effective means to communicate very important information that needs to be acted upon in a timely fashion.

Stay Updated on EmailToVoice.Net

Subscribe to our mailing list in the right column of our Blog to stay updated on further advancements of EmailToVoice.Net. We also provide some very useful information in our Blog regarding Industrial Internet of Things, Workflow, Monitoring Software, and much more. Also, do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or we can assist you further in meeting your business communications requirements.

You can Subscribe for a free trial of EmailToVoice.Net. No credit is required for the free trial period.