Integrating speech recognition software in today’s call center environment is optimal for not only customers seeking personalized self-service interactions, but also for the center hoping to reduce its reliance on agents to handle live calls. This has been something call centers have been trying to find a healthy balance between for years, and now, physicians are getting on board by increasingly recognizing the benefits this technology can provide, especially when coupled with IVR.
This week, MDN gave insight into one example of how these two forces are being combined, where Baptist Medical Center physician Scott Sachatello, M.D., found himself overwhelmed by the accuracy the technology provided. Upon embracing IVR in his practice, he apparently immediately saw the difference in his ability to complete such things as medical charts, and was thrilled to see how speech recognition allowed his thoughts to translate into text right before his eyes.
Even with this success, however, it still takes due diligence when selecting the right product to satisfy IVR or speech recognition needs for medical practice. Whether speech recognition is used by a customer or by a physician, it can undeniably be complex at times.
For one, accuracy is central to its adoption and use; the more accurate the solution, the better value it delivers for the professional environment (because let’s be honest, if you don’t have accurate IVR, what do you really have?) Additionally, adding a hands-free microphone or a graphical interface can improve the user experience. Essentially, it’s all about providing what the user needs to optimize the experience.
Physicians are also pleased to see high levels of flexibility, as they can select between an in-house or cloud-based solution. At the end of the day, giving them some leg room to choose which solution is best for them ultimately provides the customer with the best results, and so this is obviously critical. There is no one-size-fits-all approach, as the right solution depends on the environment in which it will be deployed and the preference of its users. Whether or not the solution has to be connected to the Internet for optimal performance is also key in the decision-making process.
Regardless of the deployment method, physicians are quick to find IVR interactions to be much more efficient and less tedious than traditional note-taking. For example, the ease of transcribing dictation via speech recognition software instead of point-and-click templates typically found in electronic health records provides unparalleled advantages.
For the IVR provider seeking to dominate this niche, the key is to focus on continuous improvements that optimize the experience for the physician, such as embedding language processing software. When these solutions are integrated into key applications used within the medical office, much time is inevitably saved – and perhaps even better, headaches are avoided. But this isn’t all. Remember how we said IVR can be very complex? The reason for this is because it’s also about how you use the technology. Sure, it’s certainly vital that one utilizes a robust, reliable IVR solution, but one must go beyond this to also properly apply it. Otherwise, you’ll only have half of a very important whole.
All of these developments point to an important element in IVR – the ability to drive use and adoption is completely dependent upon the design and operation of the technology itself. One thing is for sure, though, and that’s that IVR is extending its reach to surpass traditional customer service techniques. Who knows what 2013 will have in store for this quickly expanding technology?
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Edited by Allison Boccamazzo