International IVR System Trends Subject of Companies and Markets Report
April 15, 2010
By David Sims
, TMCnet Contributing Editor
Today, interactive voice response, or "IVR," systems are used by small, medium and large companies to re-direct calls to relevant customer service agents. A recent report looks at this burgeoning IVR system industry, and predicts where growth is most likely to take place.
Some of the more common end-use applications of IVR systems include polls and surveys, office call routing, selective information lookup, call center forwarding, order entry transactions and account balances and transfers.
Market data and trends are presented in "IVR Systems: An International Market Report," from Companies and Markets.
The report finds that North America, Europe, Africa, and Middle East "represent relatively mature markets wherein future growth will stem largely from product replacements." These markets are currently witnessing a rise in the number of IVR upgrades and replacements, especially among large companies with first-generation systems.
The migration of these companies onto second-generation systems is forecasted to generate market opportunities in the upcoming years by Companies and Markets analysts, who say "Asia Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean, on the other hand, represent emerging markets for IVR systems."
A recent piece by David Facer highlighted on TMC (News - Alert) outlined some of the most common pitfalls associated with IVR and how to avoid them.
Facer, senior product manager at inContact, a cloud-based vendor of contact center products, has ways of avoiding some of the most common problems, screwups and snafus associated with implementing IVR.
He's all for IVR: "Not only can you improve the quality of your customer interactions but also lower overhead by reducing the number of calls received by your agents as well as reducing agent burnout that often occurs when handling menial calls."
Create an IVR road map that prioritizes your targets, he advises: "typically whatever is causing your contact center the most pain, or the simplest project that will produce results -- and proceed one step at a time."
For example, Facer says, one Internet service provider "had big plans for IVR," but started by implementing a simple IVR process informing customers when there was an outage in their zip code. "It was the simplest item on their IVR implementation list, yet one that solved a major customer headache while saving hundreds of agent hours."
David Sims is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of David's articles, please visit his columnist page. He also blogs for TMCnet here.
Edited by Kelly McGuire