Interactive Voice Response, or IVR, has long had a bad reputation, in the same way that the early movements of Vivaldi's Springtime have become synonymous with long waits on the phone. Certainly, in the late 1980s, when the shift from old-fashioned rotary phones to touch-tone telephones took place, IVR did not offer much to entice users, who were confused by the use of the new “asterisk” and “pound” keys, compounded by the fact that they were dealing with an obtuse machine instead of a human. Yet, IVR solutions have evolved to the point where today we wonder how we could do without these voice services that simplify, far more than we admit, the relationships and interactions between businesses and their customers.
From simple call screening to the creation of true customer journeys
It must be said that IVR has evolved considerably in thanks to the convergence between telephony and IT and, on the other hand, the simplification of tools to create phone-based services. This information is also available at ivr call center. Beyond its main objective of classifying incoming call flows (to speak to the sales department, press 1, to troubleshoot, press 2, etc.) and better distributing them among the available agents, IVR technology now makes it possible to build true interactive customer journeys. These journeys seamlessly combine the phone, which remains the preferred entry point for consumers, with other channels, such as email, SMS or self-service tools using text-to-speech and speech recognition, or the phone's buttons.
The shift to graphics
What has radically changed is the ability to easily configure these tours in a 100% visual and graphical interface, without the need for programming knowledge or special technical skills. It is now possible to design the customer journey directly on the screen, without having to immerse oneself in the complexities of the automatic call distribution system (ACD). For sales, marketing or customer service teams, this makes a big difference. The other advantage of this type of interface is that it is very easy to create a new IVR for a specific or even temporary use, or to evolve an existing IVR, either to adapt it to the company's needs or to new consumer uses.