In our fast-paced, digitally focused world, customers want personalized service at lightning speed. A Hubspot survey of 1,000 customers found that 90% of people expect a response from a live customer service agent in ten minutes or less. Because expectations are so high, the pressure is on for customer service agents to consistently provide quick, high-quality customer experiences. Offering an elevated level of service with such a fast turnaround is next to impossible with manual support alone. And even if you have some digital tools in your tech stack, traditional contact center technology can fall short when it comes to efficiency. That’s why choosing no-fuss technology that automates your contact center’s routine operations is essential for making tasks more manageable for your agents.
We’ve already talked about what IVR is in our previous posts. To put it simply, it is a system that automatically routes your customers’ calls to the appropriate operators/departments and, in some cases, gives answers to simple questions by itself. Today we'll talk about how to create a well-performing IVR system and what you should pay attention to before you begin.
1. Analyze your current IVR flow
If you are already using an IVR system and neither your team nor your customers are satisfied with it, try to identify its weakest points first.
You can gather the best ideas by reaching out to your customers, support representatives, and by analyzing the data you have. Here are some things you should estimate:
- Average waiting time in queue
- The number of issues resolved without the help of an operator
- Callback requests
- The number of issues resolved with the help of an operator
- The number of dissatisfied customers
Once this work is done, you can identify the main problems that affect the quality of the service and start working on improving your IVR system.
2. Create new scenarios for all incoming calls
Now that you know the weaknesses of your existing IVR, you can reconfigure it in a way that would route the calls more efficiently and yield better results. Today, an IVR system is fairly easy to build in visual editors in a couple of hours.
For example, using Voximplant Kit, you can use a drag-and-drop editor to build new scenarios:
Design your sequence of required actions: for example, a call followed by a survey (via speech synthesis), repeated calls in case of a missed call, speech recognition and recording of a voice response. Each block replaces an action of an in-house employee, excluding the potential influence of human factors, such as an unintelligible voice, forgetfulness, mistakes when dialing a number, and many others.
The process of building a great IVR becomes much easier if you have a solution that visualizes the scenarios of your call center. Once you have designed a new scenario, you can test it out and launch it right away. However, if you don’t have access to a solution like that, you can simply draw your new scenario on paper. Here’s an example of how an IVR system can operate:
Greeting + IVR
If you want to use a personalized approach and show your customers that you appreciate them right away, you can use their personal data from the CRM system to greet them by name when they make a call. Customers will undoubtedly appreciate this kind of attention.
As a next step, you can use IVR to route customer requests to appropriate operators, according to their needs. So, for example, after a greeting, the client will be offered to navigate by pressing keys or, if a complex IVR is involved, by using voice selection.
Thanks to the capabilities of an IVR, the company can reduce both spendings and employee workload, because in a high-quality menu you can find answers to your questions without connecting with a human operator. IVR is also convenient for customers, since they no longer have to repeat their problem to each operator over and over again.
3. Tailor an IVR to your customers
Look for inspiration to make your IVR special. If your menu is not boringly standard (just like what everybody else has), your IVR will be more appreciated by customers much better, and it will surely be remembered. Scripting can be quick and easy, but if you approach it with passion and creativity, your IVR will show much better results.
Where can you find inspiration? Needlessly to say, the best way is to analyze the records of customer-operator conversations. By listening to such recordings, you can get creative when solving common problems for your customers. However, such research takes a lot of time and effort, and additional expenses will be required to automate this process.
We believe that to create your first IVR, you can get ideas from the Internet or seek advice from a company that provides opportunities for creating an IVR on a platform. On the Internet, you can find best practices, reviews and discussions that may be useful to you.
In fact, you can even find specific clichés that best suit your brand’s strategy and culture. If you know several creative or successful companies from your industry, you can easily try going through their IVR system to find out:
- What steps their customers go through
- What tone of voice is used in the recordings
- How their content is special and different from other IVRs
- How long it usually takes before you’re connected with a human operator
To put it simply, gain inspiration from others and try to experiment yourself. Make your IVR unique, since it’s always great if you can make it stand out.
4. Don't forget about feedback
Once you’ve launched your IVR system, don't forget the importance of customer reviews, because their satisfaction is your priority. Your main goal is to make the system convenient and easy to use. Collecting feedback and fine-tuning your IVR is a never-ending process. It’s also important to check on your employees to see how their workload has changed. You should expect to see that the majority of simple (and most popular) questions can now be resolved with the help of the IVR, so your employees can focus on more complicated requests.
5. Find the right "voice"
Whether you want your voice to be male or female, it’s always a good option to find a media agency that offers voice recording services with the language variety you need for your IVR. The agency will make sure your recordings sound professional and clear. Another option is using synthesized voices. Pick exactly what suits you. You can also use the voice of your employee or hire freelancers, but make sure to check their ratings and reviews.
It's no secret that a properly implemented IVR system can improve customer service greatly. It facilitates communication between your company and clients, creating a nice image of your brand in the long run.
Our experts at Voximplant will gladly share best practices and tell you everything you need to know about cost-effective solutions for designing a great IVR.
Do not hesitate to contact us. We are always here and ready to help!