A company's Interactive Voice Response (IVR) is often the first impression that a customer encounters when interacting with your firm. An Interactive Voice Response (IVR) is an automated call management system that allows businesses to eliminate the role of a receptionist. An IVR consists of pre-recorded messages, giving a variation of options to callers in an attempt to narrow down the purpose of the call, ensure correct call redirection and to ultimately answer any queries as effectively and efficiently as possible. However, with all the wonders of IVR comes long waiting times between call direction, confusing instruction, long menu call outs and unavailability of knowledgeable agents which can cause friction and company churning. It's crucial to make a customer's experience as user friendly and streamline as possible. To ensure this, IVR’s must be a simple, efficient way to reach agents and be updated on a regular basis.
In recent years, companies have extended their communication methods, in an attempt to phase out traditional voice calls. Companies have included many digital options such as SMS, email and social media. Even though several alternatives were available, IVR investments continued to rise.
IVR provides a platform for both small and large businesses to solve problems on their own, as technology continues to advance, here as some of the best practices to incorporate to ensure the best possible IVRs.
At Klearcom, one of our primary focuses is customer experience. By knowing your caller and understanding their needs and expectations, it helps improve their overall experience. By ensuring your IVR is integrated with your CRM, it's important to know who is calling and their relationship with the company.
Ultimately, when establishing an IVR, think about your own individual experience, what tools helped make your experience enjoyable and what caused you frustration? Simply tailor your personal experience to your company.
Some features we would recommend;
1) Offer a call-back option
The last thing a customer wants when calling a company, is to be left on hold for what feels like hours. By including a call-back option it means the customer can continue with their day as normal. This reduces frustration, and improves a customer's experience.
2) Integrate your IVR with your contact center solution
By integrating your IVR with your contact center solution, it allows the IVR to send information to agents detailing the customer's interaction. You can gather analytics on the entire customer journey from menu selection to end resolution. By doing this agents can be better equipped to answer queries both efficiently and effectively.
3) Avoid offering too many options
When a customer calls, they’re in no mood to undertake a memory test. Don’t over stimulate the customer with too many options, they simply won’t remember. When a customer becomes overwhelmed by choice, they become frustrated, resulting in call termination, choosing the incorrect option out of irritation, or choosing to speak directly to an agent. The longer the list of options, the more abandoned calls. Instead IVR’s should be broken down into simplistic, manageable chunks of information. In the long run, not only does this benefit the customer, but it benefits the entire system as agents are equipped for the customers queries and they’re not greeted by frustrated bitter individuals.
4) Allow customers to speak to an agent
Allowing customers to speak with an agent may appear as counter-effective. However, navigating an IVR system may be challenging for certain customers. In particular when the IVR is thought out in a specific way to make speaking to an agent more challenging. Improving a company's customer experience is about improving it for all customers
5) Test your IVR system
When you’ve built your IVR script, it's important to run it by other members of your team, family or friends. By doing this you can determine whether your script is functionable and easy to understand. Ensuring your script is coherent is equally as important as testing your IVR for redirection failures, call drops, poor audio quality and connectivity issues. It is important to stay on top of the quality of your IVR as poor quality IVRs cause customer frustration and lowers their customer experience.
Thankfully, at Klearcom, we can do this for you! Klearcom can test end-to-end customer call paths from customer to agent in local markets, using a single test. We don’t stop testing where the conversation begins. Using our Artificial Intelligence (AI) platform we can identify customer impacting issues, we provide instant results meaning you can pinpoint and alert every issue as soon as possible reducing the implications an outage can have on your company and overall customer experience.
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