Seeing the Value in an IVR System: Report
May 24, 2010
By David Sims
, TMCnet Contributing Editor
Recently-published research from Ovum (News - Alert), "Enterprise IVR beyond customer service," is now available at Fast Market Research.
While interactive voice response, or 'IVR,' platforms and their associated applications are predominately contact center technologies, the report finds that the fundamental value of an IVR system - its ability to route calls and manage the inbound and outbound flow of data - makes it a valuable tool beyond a purely customer service-related capacity.
Notably, IVR has long been a tool for providers of local search such as 411 services.
IVR is not widely thought of as an internal tool for enterprises, the report notes, adding that as such, enterprises and even vendors often overlook the benefits of IVR as an employee-facing deployment:
"But as enterprises place a premium on streamlining internal communications, IVR has become a vital component for powering unified communications and for enabling enterprises to manage their employees and their assets."
Last June TMC's (News - Alert) Amy Tierney wrote of Microsoft's launching a new IVR service, Bing 411, which she described as "essentially a telephony version of its new Bing search engine."
The Bing system, which is powered by Tellme, uses speech recognition technology to retrieve results. The free service helps users find a business, or receive a text message with a link to a map. It also includes star ratings of businesses based on reviews from others, Tierney wrote.
The service was reportedly a direct competitor to Google's Goog-411 IVR service, Tierney wrote, "which is similar, but offers more features."
This report has an overview of enterprise uses for IVR beyond a customer service capacity in UC and field force automation. This theme, Fast Market says, "excludes the substantial market for IVR as a search tool [for 411 or for finding music and ringtones] and customer-facing deployments of outbound IVR."
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