IVR, this common acronym stands for Interactive Voice Response. Automated IVR systems are used by the call centers of the enterprises to answer incoming calls, or when an outbound call is answered by a pre-recorded message with options and information for the customer. Callers respond by giving their input with their telephonic keypad or by using voice commands (IVR with voice recognition). The IVR system will route the call to either a self-service application or a suitable human agent. The IVR is the first application that establishes the interaction between the customer and an organization when a call is made at any call center. It results in influencing the caller’s perception with its tone of voice and easy use. An effective call center installs an IVR system with CRM and other contact center systems. A well-tuned IVR solution provides several benefits for the call center. Including IVR self-service, automated callbacks, IVR with voice recognition, and additional advantages like text-to-speech.
Benefits of IVR system
- Intelligent Route Calling: IVR system can intelligently route the customer calls linking with the CRM based on the caller’s phone number. It means that the calls are automatically connected to the last consultant spoken to. The VIP calls are also placed in the front row of the queue or calls are directed to the particular agent that speaks a particular language and the options are endless. Intelligent call routing optimizes the customer journey by obliterating high rates, reducing queue time for calls, and tailored IVR call-back options are provided for times of particularly high call volumes.
- Improving the Journey of the Customer: Traditional IVR number systems and outbound IVR calls were not advanced and had a bad reputation. Systems that are poorly planned can frustrate the customers with their clunky and complex designs. In the recent world, the IVR system is revolutionizing customers’ journeys with multiple clear messages that reveal the organization’s brand, providing an effective self-service tool. For the callers which need additional pieces of information, they are transferred to the best suitable agent to handle the query. It helps improve productivity and reduce the frustration of the callers. Moreover, a well-crafted IVR and an advanced speech IVR allow customers to self-serve their queries outside the business standard hours, enabling the organization to be present 24*7.
- Measures Customer Satisfaction: Customer Satisfaction Scores (CSAT) are vital to every organization and the IVR system solution surveys after each interaction provides accurate customer satisfaction scores. The scores measured can be reported on by the agents that help with the training or reward programs.
Another way of enhancing customer satisfaction is by enriching the hold-on experience. The wait time announcements can be made by the virtual assistants and also manages call-back requests.
- Business Continuity Planning: A big call center usually has robust business continuity plans and technology forming part of it. More often BCP considers people and technology but forgets about the IVR routing and messages. IVR routed in hardware and on-premise telephony solutions can be a challenge in case of emergency and altogether the continuity of the business is challenged. Delivering a sub-standard service can lower the satisfaction rates of the customers. Thankfully, in the present times, IVR number solutions are configured in the cloud, which allows the contact center to deliver services from anywhere and provides the same professional and polished customer journey. It becomes useful during the periods when the resources of the company get strained and demands are likely to increase.
- Omnichannel Integration: A cloud-based IVR number allows the creation of API links into other systems (for instance, a CRM). It provides numerous benefits to the customers and also let you to identify the customers in advance to reach an agent, which in turn-
- Reduces the handling time by deleting some elements from the ‘call script’.
- Improves first call resolution by getting the customers to the particular agent and department for the first time.
- Allows high-value agents or VIP clients to get directed to the best service agents or sales.
Since its inception in 1973, IVR has come a long way with its advancements in cloud technology where the possibilities seem endless. If an organization takes a look at the IVR through the eyes of the customers and evaluates their journey, they would continuously strive on the ladder of growth using the IVR system.