IVR, or Interactive Voice Response, is a technology that simply automates interactions with customer calls. In doing this, IVR provides a conversation, which can be either prerecorded or generated audio that assists, directs, and/or guides customers automatically without a live operator. Within these interactions customers are able to communicate by using either the dial pad or speech recognition.
The utilization of this technology is becoming more and more popular as many companies begin to see the possibilities and advantages inherent in the feature’s use. Aside from reducing costs and allotting better time management, IVR can be used advantageously in a number of different ways. While there advantages can vary based on application, we have collected 5 major advantages of using Interactive Voice Response.
- Ease and Accessibility
Though companies may even find it intimidating to switch to a new automated system, subscription IVR hosting plans help to simplify the process. With these hosting plans, companies of all sizes can take advantage of all the benefits without having to worry about the technical aspect, hardware costs, and computing budgets.
- Better Customer Service
Although the impersonalization of a machine may be initially offsetting to some, it ultimately allots for more direct, specific, and thorough customer service. With conversational IVR systems, customers feel that they are being better attended to. If customers are calling with specific questions, the automation can generate quick responses that are informative, as well as time efficient. Additionally, calls can now be answered on the first ring, which in turn reduces customer wait time and cuts call volume, saving time for both the customer and company.
- Unlimited Customer Access
IVR systems are always available to customers regardless of time or day. While office hours, holidays, and breaks dictate and limit employee availability, IVR systems are always at the customer’s disposal. Although the prospect of dealing with automations may again seem off-putting to some, these systems are available, even when a live representative is not (for example, on holidays, or after office hours). Therefore, customers can receive service whenever they need it. While the option of having a live representative may still be appealing to some, it can be offered with an IVR system; however, with the system, customer’s now have unlimited access to your company.
- Wider Personalization
IVR systems allow for tremendous personalization that helps to create a better relationship with customers. Each IVR system can be programmed with personalized greetings for known callers based on their caller ID information. Along with addressing a caller by their name, the system can also identify and share information specific to the caller. For example, if it is the caller’s birthday, the automated service would be able to wish the caller a happy birthday. In addition to programming caller information, IVR systems are fitted with a number of language options. Language options can be programmed for specific callers as well, which may help existing and/or potential customers feel more comfortable. Aside from their programming, languages can be selected as options for the caller.
- Create a Better Company Image
IVR systems again account for a lot for personalization and customer service; however, they also create a better impression on customers. Smaller companies, as well as home based companies, can create a bigger and more professional image by using automated systems. In contrast, bigger companies can use these systems to maintain consistency in customer service and call volume. Either way, IVR systems establish a professional image for the company.
Interactive Voice Response is great tool that’s fit with a number of benefits and advantages; however, like most tools, its use depends on the hand(s) using it. While different applications of IVR systems will render different outcomes, there are definitely some universal advantages. The above examples are but a few of the potential benefits of IVR. As IVR systems develop, we’ll be sure to follow up with further emendations.