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Article : Six Design Tips to Improve IVR and Save Time and Money

Rob Crutchington, Director at Encoded discusses the optimum approach to adopting an IVR system that delivers the best results for the company - and for its customers.

Ask people in the street about interactive voice response (IVR) systems and you are likely to get very different viewpoints. Loved by many as a quick way to make a payment, check a balance or top up credit on a mobile ‘phone, many customers are happy to use a self-service IVR solution.

However, other people just want to speak to someone directly and do not want to spend several minutes listening to a recorded message and selecting different options. Worst of all is when the caller ends up in a loop back where they started and then they have to repeat everything to a live contact centre agent.

There is no denying whether you love or loathe them, IVR solutions implemented well can help to deal with high call volumes, reduce cost and improve customer service. Business hours can be extended to provide a round-the-clock response, every day of the year, and seasonal spikes can be managed to take payments which would normally require temporary staff or costly overtime.

The secret to IVR is making it available to those customers who want to use it, while not frustrating those who would prefer to talk to a contact centre agent. To help achieve this careful balance here are six design tips to ensure this response channel works for the contact centre and its customers:



1) Integrate IVR with Business Processes

The ideal solution is to provide an integrated IVR system that enables customers to self-serve for the majority of simple enquiries, such as checking balances, making payments or managing accounts. Once these are in place it frees-up valuable agent time to deal with urgent or more complex enquiries.

2) Keep Call Options Simple

Keep the options on the call simple and intuitive, with clear and concise prompts, so that callers can navigate the IVR system quickly and easily. Once they have a positive experience, customers will want to use this method of self-serve routinely and come back more often.

3) Provide Customers with Confidence in the System

Callers that are happy to use automated services are usually very capable. There is no need to feedback every entry, which can slow down the process and make people opt out along the way to speak to an agent. The best approach is to repeat only important information such as payment amounts and account detail confirmation. Trust the caller is entering in the correct information and set verification checks so that incorrect data can be spotted and acted upon, without frustrating the majority of competent customers.

4) Speak the Same Language

It is important to ensure that any automated voice system is appropriate for the audience. Tone of voice, style and speed of delivery are all important considerations to ensure a positive experience.

5) Meeting Customer Needs

No matter how smooth the IVR system, there will always be some customers who prefer to speak to someone. Offering an opt-out choice to speak to a live agent is essential. Once a call is rerouted, ensuring that it is ‘intelligently’ handled is essential. When a customer is put through to the contact centre detailed information on the caller should be available in a customer relationship management (CRM) system, so that the call is handled quickly and efficiently.

6) Keep Checking

Like all systems, it is important to keep monitoring and evaluating IVR solutions. Keep a check on call performance data to identify areas for improvement. Reports on call flow monitoring, recording calls and real time statistics help to measure whether the system is delivering the required results.

With IVR systems there are definite benefits to be had - for your business and your customers. Getting the design right and using the most appropriate technology, at the least possible costs, can save both time and money. Research from ContactBabel published last year revealed that the average cost of a telephony IVR self-service session is 65p, compared to £3.87 for a live agent call, £3.70 for an agent-handled email and £3.00 for a web chat session. This means that IVR costs 6 times less than a phone call. With figures like this even people in the street would agree it is worth getting it right.


About Encoded Ltd.:
Company LogoEncoded provides interactive voice response solutions and automated payment solutions. Encoded has invested in achieving the highest level of PCI DSS compliance. It has a Level 1 Attestation of Compliance (AOC) which applies to organisations that store, process and/or transmit more than 300,000 Visa transactions per year it also appears on the Visa Europe Merchant Agents List.
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Today's Tip of the Day - Understand the Processes And The Culture

Read today's tip or listen to it on podcast.

Published: Wednesday, August 26, 2015

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2021 Buyers Guide Inbound Call Handling Services

 
1.) 
2Ring

2Ring Gadgets for Cisco Finesse
2Ring Gadgets for Cisco Finesse, offered in three bundles (standard, enhanced, premium), empowers supervisors and enables agents to become more efficient.

Supervisors are able to handle everyday tasks on their own from within Cisco Finesse: reskill agents, view detailed information about agents and customer interactions in real-time, receive alerts about important call center events (RONA, Calls in Queue, ..), send messages to agents, or even change wallboards on the fly. Be flexible to provide help when needed.

Agents gain all the features that they need to serve customers faster - repetitive tasks are automated, alerts about important call center events pop-up on top of all the appli...
(read more)
PH: +1 (916) 426-3790

2.) 
3Fiftynine

Branches
Calls are received by the right person or department. The right corresponding information is shown to the agent which makes that appointments are handled quicker and more secure.

3.) 
Agara

Agara is an autonomous virtual voice agent powered by Real-time Voice AI. It is designed to have intelligent conversations with your customers, vendors, and partners without any assistance from human agents. It can handle a wide variety of calls including inbound customer care calls, outbound lead generation calls, appointment scheduling calls, and overdue payment recovery calls.

Agara is available for several industries including banking, insurance, retail, e-commerce, airlines, and telecom. Powered by advanced Real-time Voice AI that understands speech in real-time, automatically determines the right process to follow and guides the caller along in the process with natural conversation.
PH: +1 (512) 333 4634

4.) 
Call Center Studio

Call Center Studio
Call Center Studio is the world’s first call center built on Google and is one of the most secure and stable systems with some of the industry’s best reporting. It is one of the most full-featured enterprise grade systems (with the most calling features, one of the best call distribution, outbound dialing features and integrations—including IVR, AI Speech Recognition, blended inbound/outbound calling and includes Google’s new Dialogflow and Speech API. Call Center Studio is the absolute easiest to use (with a 10 minute setup), and is the price performance leader with lower equipment cost and less setup time.
PH: +1 512-872-7565

5.) 
Connect Assist

Contact Centre Services
We’re a specialist Contact Centre business and market leaders helping socially focused organisations deliver quality support to their clients and service users. We do this by providing 24/7 helplines, software solutions and consultancy services.

Since launching in 2006, we’ve operated at the sharp end of customer service, supporting some of society’s most vulnerable people. We’ve pioneered in our space to become a specialist in helplines, whilst using the most advanced communication and database technologies available.

Our social mission has remained a constant throughout, providing many meaningful career prospects and growth opportunities to people within our local communities and fur...
(read more)
PH: 07973640527

6.) 
Jointly International Inc.

Front Office Solutions
Front office is your Company’s first line of customer interaction and serves as the mirror of your business. Focus on your core business and let our competent staff handle your various front office needs such as:

* Customer Service via chat, email or phone
* Technical Support via chat, email or phone
* Helpdesk
* Virtual Assistant/Receptionist
* Answering Service
* Lead Generation
* Appointment Setting
* Verification
* Surveys
* Debt Recover, Collections
PH: +61 7 5660 6284

7.) 
MattsenKumar LLC

Contact Center Outsourcing
By catering valuable, usable and enjoyable customer service, businesses can increase their CSAT Score and Customer Retention Rate. We help organizations to provide quality customer service through varied channels like email, phone and live chat. Ensuring quality after-sales support is our USP and we rely on proven approaches to ensure quality customer service.

8.) 
OpsTel Services

SPEED
The SPEED solution solves for service level issues while cost optimizing the environment with automation.

Provides an enhanced way to speed up & optimize invoking temporary agent skills configuration changes into the contact center environment.

Speed allows you to schedule both future changes & temporary changes that auto-revert back to the original state when scheduled time expires.

Speed features:

*Automated / Scheduled Temporary Agent Skills Configuration Management
*Immediate Temporary or Reoccurring Schedule Skills Configuration Changes
*Easy to Use/Operations Administration Focused
*Descriptive Monitoring Activity Dashboard
*Detailed “End to End’ Audit Trail and Performance Monitoring
PH: 1+480-435-9390

9.) 
Vads

VADS Inbound Contact Center
VADS Inbound Contact Center Services provide live operators who answer incoming calls as you would yourself. A team of professional script writers is available to help you script a greeting and experience programmers will set up a time and money saving program. Our unique approach to call center services is client-focused, and takes each project’s unique needs into account to our client’s satisfaction. We offer solution as part of our service to keep you in touch with your client and drive sales.

- Customer Service
- Walk In Center
- Service Desk
PH: 0217991445

10.) 
Tru29 Outsource Solutions Inc.

Front Office Solutions
Any part of your business operations that requires constant end-customer facing task is an essential part of your business.

This task requires a good customer experience results for every customer interaction. Our extensive experience in handling Front Office related tasks can help you focus on your core business while being cost-efficient at the same time.
 

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