How To Use Your IVR Better To Support Your Contact Center

The competitive nature of today’s market, combined with your customers unprecedented ability to find companies and products and services to address their needs, means customer service and direct response sales is taking on an ever-increasing importance.  How an organization treats its customers and potential customers can often be the deciding factor in whether your customers continue to trust your organization with their business. Quite simply, your company cannot afford to have customers stuck in an IVR puzzle. So, what’s the key solution?

An important and often overlooked step is regular review and analysis of your IVR system data.  Reviewing simple report categories and identifying trends can save you operational costs, customer satisfaction and increase profitability.

Following are common categories for review.

“Recovery” States

Recovery states (like Retry, Timeout, or Help) indicate customer difficulty in the IVR.  The customer’s inability to move through the system indicates possible confusion, frustration or difficulty understanding direction.  Not all recovery states have the same impact.  It is important to understand the percentage of callers in each category and asses your IVR prompts and/or directions.  Making small changes can have a large impact.

Caller Intention

Reviewing the caller intention allows organizations to easily discern whether certain self-service attempts resulted in higher or lower levels of customer satisfaction.  Do you have a particular self service segment which results in multiple dropped calls or redirection to a live agent?  It may be the result of an application in need of attention.

Repeat Calls

Repeat call analysis provides unique insight into customer motivation.  Are repeat calls being made by proficient, satisfied users of the IVR?  Or, are repeat calls the result of a difficult to use IVR, less than ideal experience and unhappy customers?  Difficulty may be related to the number of steps/time to complete.  Longer experiences beyond reasonable expectations produce less satisfied customers.

Call Disposition

How do transfers to live agents, and abandoned calls reflect on the customer service experience?  Typically the dissatisfaction level is highest when callers transfer to live agents and/or abandon calls.

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