What Is Interactive Voice Response?

When you call your bank or credit card company to address an issue with your account, you are probably first greeted by an automated voice. After choosing from a list of options and responding to questions with voice prompts, your call is directed to an area or menu. At some point, the automated voice attempts to help you troubleshoot the issue and provide you with personalized account information. You have spent most of this phone call working with interactive voice response (IVR) technology. Allowing callers to interact with a company without being connected to an operator is just one feature of IVR technology.

Given that recent data suggests that most consumers are not brand loyal, customer service is more important than ever. Businesses must do everything they can to earn every customer. As a result, many companies turn to customer service technology to innovate how they handle interactions and build relationships. IVR allows businesses to revolutionize contact centers and provide better, more efficient customer support.

Let’s take a closer at how vendors like brightpattern.com are changing the game of customer support for businesses with interactive voice response technology.

What is interactive voice response?

IVR is an automated telephone system that integrates pre-recorded messages and text-to-speech technology with a dual-tone multi-frequency interface to interact with callers. As described in the scenario above, this technology allows customers to access information and support without the help of a live agent. Customers can interact with the automated system through voice or touch-tone responses.

An IVR system is an efficient way of answering and routing calls. Through a series of menu options and prompts, customers can be directed to the right departments. IVR technology can improve the customer experience by providing callers with self-service communication channels.

How does IVR work?

An IVR system is a type of computer-telephony integration. To incorporate this technology into a call center, users need a telephone system, IVR software, a database, and support infrastructure. The computer system is connected to your telephone lines so that the software can handle all incoming calls. You will need hardware called a telephony board or car to run the IVR system on your calls. Additionally, you will need stable internet and intranet connectivity and a server where the IVR software can be hosted. The set-up times are fast, and the integration with your existing equipment can be seamless.

The interactive system will allow customers to navigate the available menu to find appropriate solutions quickly. Based on customer responses, the system can elevate the call and route it to an appropriate customer service representative for resolution. As disruptive tech, IVR can be a powerful business tool that revolutionizes your contact center operations.

What are the benefits of an IVR system?

With traditional call centers, customers seek assistance from customer support agents over the telephone through a dedicated customer service number. Agents have to answer phones, evaluate the issue, and route calls as necessary. Traditional operations require a large investment of time, money, and human capital. However, with innovative technology like IVR systems, there are fewer inbound calls, reduced wait times, lower operational costs, and increased productivity for your customer service team.

Today, customers have multiple channels of communication. They can reach out for support through social media, live chats, email, and SMS, and the IVR system frees up your agents to respond to customer inquiries and answer incoming calls. IVR creates easy-to-use solutions for your customers seeking self-service resolutions and reduces the heavy call volume. Additionally, this technology allows businesses increased operational flexibility to scale call center operations and expand support opportunities as required.

Interactive voice response technology is changing how companies handle customer support. The flow and timeliness of service are important for customers, and IVR technology can bring that into your contact center. With this technology, customer support agents are better equipped to handle customer issues, and customers have more service opportunities.

 

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