Transferring Calls Directly to Voicemail using Asterisk IP PBX for Small Business | Medical Offices

Small Business | Medical Office Voip Guide:  How to Configure Asterisk IP PBX to Transfer Calls Directly to Voicemail

I have had many requests from Small Business owners to allow Transferring Calls directly to Voicemail.  This feature is very useful for a busy Receptionist and is a great option for putting callers into a parking lot especially if it is coupled to a Flash Operator Panel or BLF (Busy Lamp Field) indicators built into most IP Phones.

Enabling this feature is very simple and straightforward in Asterisk IP PBX.  We first need to determine which button will indicate the forward to voicemail feature.  In the example below, I have designated “3” as that number.

; For Transferring Calls Directly to voicemail using 3
exten => _3XXXX,1,Answer
same => n,Wait(2)
same => n,VoiceMail(${EXTEN:1},u)

The Above code can be in the utilities context or in the context that has your internal extensions.  Just make sure the number that initiates this feature is not one of the internal extensions being used.

To decipher the code above:

  • exten => _3XXXX,1,Answer:  This will Answer all calls that starts with 3
  • same => n,Wait(2):  This initiates a 2 second delay as the receptionist must hit Transfer or Send button for the transfer and this gives them 2 seconds to do that
  • same => n,VoiceMail(${EXTEN:1},u):  This line indicates that the call will be sent to Voicemail of the Extension starting on the 2nd digit.  For example, if the call was sent to  31000 (3 for the prefix and 1000 for the actual extension), it will strip the 3 and send the call to Voicemail of extension 1000.
The above code was originally implemented on Asterisk 1.4 and still works great with 1.8 .  It works with both Attended and Blind Transfers.
I hope this can be of use to you and I welcome any comments or suggestions.



About Express Interconnect: We are a Portland, Oregon based Small Business VoIP Phone Consultant specializing in implementing quality VoIP PBX system based on Asterisk IP PBX. We can be reached at 503-820-3513 or via email at: and can help with any questions you might have.

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