If you are technically competent, there are a number of excellent free and open source predictive dialer software options giving you a free predictive dialer (other than the cost to maintain and host). You will need to be able to install, host and maintain software on your own servers or on cloud servers.
Do not take on the task of configuring and maintaining any of the open source predictive dialers described below unless you are willing to maintain and manage the software. The good news is that there are a number of providers that will configure and host these dialers on your behalf if you are unable or unwilling to take on the technical challenge.
The open source predictive dialers listed below each provide the software that is needed to allow agents to log in, set themselves as available, and handle calls that the predictive dialer software has initiated and that have been connected to a contact. Be aware that these opensource call center software options do not provide the telephony infrastructure to make or connect calls. You will need to separately obtain telephony from a telco provider. If you are unable to obtain or configure telephony (or if you are unable to install opensource software on a server), we recommend that you use a predictive dialer vendor that does the work on your behalf. Contact us for recommendations.
The following free and open source predictive dialers are discussed:
- Free predictive dialer from goautodial.org
- Open source predictive dialer from Vicidial
- Open source predictive dialer: Newfies-Dialer
- The Open Source OSDial Dialer
- Open source ICTDialer
- Other open source predictive dialers
- Hosted Predictive Dialers
Free predictive dialer from goautodial.org
The source code for the open source predictive dialer from goautodial is available on github. This excellent open source project is actively maintained by a large group of contributors. The open source dialer is part of a full contact center software suite (and the predictive dialer is just one part of the suite). Smaller contact centers with the technical resources to host, maintain and configure open source software may find this free predictive dialer and contact center platform to be a great choice.
The goautodial predictive dialer is based on the open source Asterisk telephony server and uses WebRTC to connect agents to the goautodial hosted dialer. The predictive comes with the following features that make it easy to configure and execute predictive dialing campaigns:
- Answering machine detection – a feature that allows the predictive dialer to automatically recognize when an answering machine answers a call. This allows the predictive dialer to hang up (or leave an automated message) before the call is actually connected to an agent (making sure the human agent doesn't waste time talking to an answering machine).
- A list management module – a feature that allows you to easily upload lists of numbers and names to be dialed using the predictive dialer. A good list management module is essential for any predictive dialing application.
- Predictive dialing pace or levels — a feature that allows an administrator to set the “pace” or speed at which the predictive dialer dials numbers from the list. The pace can be set as “slow” or higher speeds.
- A browser-based interface for Agents — this feature allows call center agents to login to the predictive dialer via a Web browser. Agents make and take calls using a headset and a Web browser reducing the cost to configure an agents work station.
A screenshot showing the agent interface for an agent using the open source predictive dialer from GoAutoDial. This screenshot shows what an agent might see while on a call that was connected by the predictive dialer.
Assuming you want to install the most recent version of the GoAutoDial predictive dialer, go to the GoAutoDial github repository (link is above) and download the current version of the GoAutoDial installer (it is provided as an ISO image).
Then, follow the install instructions available at goautodial.org
If you have followed the install instructions and have an instance of GoAutoDial running on a server or other computer, you will need to first make sure you have configured telephony resources for the campaign.
Once telephony has been configured, go to the “Campaign” screen and create or modify an existing campaign and select the desired dial method (choose between “Manual”, “Auto Dial” or “Predictive”), and then select the desired dialing speed (“Slow”, “Normal”, “Max” or “High”).
The GoAutoDial predictive dialing campaign screen is shown below.
The GoAutoDial opensource dialer comes with a lead loader that allows you to upload a csv file of leads to dial.
The lead loader requires that you follow a specific lead file layout and that the lead file be saved in a comma separated value format.
A screenshot of the lead loader screen is shown below.
Open source predictive dialer from Vicidial
Vicidial.org is an open source telephony project based on the Asterisk open-source phone system. The vicidial system provides a complete inbound and outbound contact center suite.
Companies often use vicidial for it's open source predictive dialer.
Another open source predictive dialer is the open source call center software from vicidial.org. This open source dialer is used by thousands of companies around the world. It is relatively easy to use and is based on the open source Asterisk telephony software.
Unlike the goautodial predictive dialer, the Vicidial software requires that agents use softphones to make and take calls. Softphones are slightly more difficult to configure (WebRTC communications simply require a headset, microphone and a modern web browser), but there are plenty of excellent resources showing how to configure softphones.
The Vicidial predictive dialer includes a number of excellent features allowing small call centers to easily operate an open source predictive dialer. The vicidial software essentially gives you a free predictive dialer (although you will need to pay for telephony and hosting costs). Vicidial features include:
- List management, allowing administrators the ability to upload or access calling lists for use with the predictive dialer.
- Agent scripts, which display information about the target when the predictive dialer connects a target (the customer) to the agent. The script can be pre-populated with the leads name, address, etc.
- Lists can be dialed in a predictive dial setting (with predictive settings controlling how the list is dialed) or in a manual-dial setting. The predictive-dial setting sends live, connected calls to available agents. The manual-dial setting requires the agent to dial each lead.
- A broadcast dial setting allows campaigns to be configured such that a pre-recorded message may be broadcast to customers.
- An IVR setting which allows campaigns to dial customers, present the customers with an introductory IVR, and then direct the customers to a live agent. This can be useful in survey applications.
- Leads can be predictively dialed using a sophisticated adaptive dialing algorithm. An adaptive dialing algorithm is technically different than a predictive dialing algorithm in that the Vicidial algorithm adapts the number of calls per agent (the pacing) based on the average length of call times and the average time it takes to connect a call. A screenshot of some of the Vicidial predictive dialer settings are shown below.
A video explaining the Vicidial open source dialer system is below.
Vicidial provides and maintains a current version of the Vicidial open source call center server for download at Vicibox. The version is provided in a set of installation files as an ISO image.
The image is for installation on Linux servers and a detailed installation guide is provided.
Open source predictive dialer: Newfies-Dialer
Newfies-Dialer is a free and open source voice broadcast application, which can fulfil a variety of roles for a range of industries and organisations who wish to contact large numbers of people by phone in a short space of time.
Another open source project is the open source dialer called the Newfies-Dialer. The Newfies-dialer is a free and open source voice broadcast application that can be used as a predictive dialler. Unlike the other two free predictive dialers discussed above, the Newfies-Dialer is based on the freeSWITCH telephony engine instead of Asterisk.
In addition to the standard dialer features, the Newfies predictive dialer has these other useful features:
- Automatic voice recognition (ASR) built in (it uses technology from Google to provide speech recognition). This feature can be useful for IVRs and other applications that support the predictive dialer.
- A sophisticated Do Not Call (DNC) list management system to ensure that contacts that request to not be called are added to the DNC list.
- Voicemail detection allows the accurate detection of whether a human answers the phone or an answering machine.
A screenshot showing the predictive dialer configuration screen from the Newfies system is shown below. As shown, the number of outbound calls per minute can be set as well as other options that control how fast a list is dialed using the dialer.
Unlike the other open source dialers discussed on this page, the Newfies-Dialer requires that you build the server from github. The installation scripts are available here.
**Note – the installation scripts have not been updated for some time, so this is probably for advanced users only.
In the past several years, the team behind the newfies-dialer have formed a for profit dialer company called Dialer.Ai. Much of the development effort that used to go into maintaining the open source software has since been diverted to the commercial entity.
A documentation page still exists for the newfies-dialer here.
Because the opensource code has not been actively maintained for some time, we recommend that only experienced technical users consider deploying and using the newfies-dialer in production environments.
The Open Source OSDial Dialer
OSDial Predictive Dialer
OSDial provides a free open source licensed autodialer. They also provide (at extra cost), maintenance, support and customization services.
The OSDial open source dialer is a branch from the Vicidial dialer discussed above. OSDial split off from Vicidial in 2009. Since the split, the OSDial code base has evolved dramatically from the Vicidial code base.
OSDial offers their open source dialer under the GNU Affero General Public License which allows you to freely use the software. However, if you make any modifications to the OSDial software, those modifications must be made available to other OSDial users.
OSDial does an excellent job of updating the software and providing instructions for installing and using the dialer software.
The OSDial dialer software is packed with all the features needed to run a small or medium sized call center. Larger call centers may want to use a paid and supported version of the OSDial product.
The dialer software provides a number of dialing configuration options including adaptive dial settings (see image below). The dialer also allows you to configure a “drop percentage limit” to ensure your autodialing campaigns comply with the TCPA safe harbor rule.
The OSDial installation instructions are available here. The software image automatically configures a dialer installation with 10 agent logins and 10 phone extensions (as well as a preconfigured manual dial campaign). This allows you to quickly get set up and running with the OSDialer software. (You will still need to configure a carrier for your calls).
Yes, OSDial provides excellent documentation for users and administrators of the OSDial dialer. You can find the user guide here as well as a sample table of contents showing what is included in the OSDial user guide. OSDial charges $50 for access to the user guide (which we believe is a very reasonable fee given the value provided by their open source dialer!)
Open source ICTDialer
Opensource autodialer from ICTInnovations
The ICTDialer from ICTInnovations is an easy to configure and use auto dialer. The code is available on github and comes with easy to follow build instructions
One thing to look for in an open source autodialer is how good the “build” instructions are. Well documented steps to help you (or your developer) compile and deploy any open source software is critical. Free software is not free if you need to waste hours trying to configure it for use.
The team from ICTInnovations has done a good job in providing good build instructions for the open source ICTDialer. You can see the build instructions here.
Once you build the open source code you are presented with a number of configuration options to set up your telephony, SMS, Fax, and email providers.
The ICTDialer is not a predictive dialer, instead it is an autodialer that can be used for voice broadcast campaigns, email blasts, or other applications where you need to reach out to a large number of contacts using voice, SMS, email or fax.
The dialer allows you to perform standard contact management by uploading contact lists. The contact lists can be grouped into “contact groups” allowing voice, SMS or other broadcasts to be sent to all contacts in the contact group (similar to a calling campaign or program).
The ICTDialer allows you to do voice broadcast dialing by uploading a voice recording for use in sending to a contact group. Email and fax campaigns are also supported.
Please note that if you need to route calls to agents, you may want to consider a different dialer (although ICTInnovations has other options which do support agent campaigns, those options are not free and open source options).
Overall, the ICTDialer appears to be an excellent choice for voice, fax, SMS and email outbound campaigns that do not involve agents.
Other open source predictive dialers
If you are highly technical, there are a number of other options that provide free and open source predictive dialers. For example, Github shows dozens of projects with source code for predictive dialer software. Many of these free predictive dialers are provided under liberal open source licensing terms allowing you to freely use and modify the software. Please consult an attorney before copying any software.
Hosted Predictive Dialers
Many open source predictive dialers have an option that allows you to use a managed service to host the dialer. If you are not technical, or if you simply want to spend your time running your call center rather than maintaining a server, a hosted predictive dialer service is a great way to go.
With a hosted predictive dialer, you pay a fee (typically a monthly hosting fee) for a third party to maintain and manage the open source software on your behalf. Examples of hosted predictive dialer services that use open source dialer software include the Vicidial hosted dialer and dialer.ai (which is the team behind the open source Newfies-dialer).