In the age of social media and unified communications, is there still a place for interactive voice responses (IVR) systems? Yes. Yes there is. While technology has grown and evolved, IVR has not been left behind.
IVR has been growing with the rest of the technology we use for communication as a result of the expanse in telecom and electronics. There are services such as cloud computing-based IVR, designed to keep the costs down and speed of deployment up, so it can keep up with all the other advancements in telecom.
Customers still often have to dial certain extensions and go through several menus until they reach whatever department they’re calling. In these cases, talking to an actual human is preferable to talking to a machine, but that is still preferable to sitting through a menu and pressing buttons. Thus, the goal is to create quick and clear IVRs that help connect customers to the people they need quickly.
Of course, IVR is keeping up with an increasingly mobile world, with apps for connecting cell phones to a company’s IVR system. The expansion of voice XML based IVR is also overtaking legacy IVR, as it provides better functionality at lowered support costs.
“In spite of all the technology that has evolved voice is still a major chunk of the interaction,” says Shankaran Nair, president of corporate strategy at Servion. “Secondly, any customer interaction is a potential success or a failure point for any brand. Customers today are spoilt for choice, there are very few brands that are in the market that offer different products or that have carved a niche for themselves who would not require the service area to differentiate themselves. If the customer's needs are not met at the IVR, a company can end up losing that customer.”
While IVR might not be the customer-preferred method of getting support and contacting the people they need to, it’s still effective even with all the growth in telecommunications. There’s still a need for the services it can provide, and IVR continues to grow with the expanse of HD and cloud-based solutions.
Edited by Amanda Ciccatelli