Interactive Voice Response (IVR), is a type of technology that has been developed to help businesses in their interaction with customers. As businesses regard the relationships they maintain with customers as of utmost importance, the creation of special departments for the sole purpose of interacting with customers was obviously normal. These, known as call centres or call units, consisted of a number employees – in turn called as live operators – who would attend to the calls of employees all day long.
Also as known Voice Response Units (VRU), IVR however enabled the possibility to interact customers without the use of a live operator. What this basically means is that a computer – through the use of inbuilt functions – is able to interact with a customer in a way similar to that of a live operator. The computer, in order to converse with the customer, has pre-programmed or recorded speech installed into it, and is able to recognize the words of the customer either through speech recognition, or simply through the customer using a dial pad. As such, this eliminates the need for many live operators to attend to customers within a business – instead, the computers can attend to the customers, with a fewer number of operators on standby for customers who especially request live operators. Therefore, IVR services are especially useful to businesses with a small number of employees, or even funds. Check this page for further information regarding Phone Recorder system.
Furthermore, to better improve the service provided by interactive voice response, has seen the inclusion of a number of additional features to IVR. For example, the increasing use of internet protocols (IP) in interactive voice response services, has led to the addition of video and reliable telephone conference calls, as well as the inclusion of messaging services. This last is also separately known as Interactive Messaging Response, or IMR services. On the other hand, to improve the service as a whole, the specialization of IVR can also be seen with the inclusion to include recognition for a number of different languages – this can also be included in its IMR services – as well as the inclusion of personalized greeting styles, and even the capability of wishing customers on their birthdays.
Nonetheless, IVR has been criticized by many as incapable of attending to the needs and wants of customers, and businesses have been accused of reverting to it as simply a method to cut down operational costs. The former accusation derives from the rigidity of some IVR – basically, the fact that these IVR are unable to successfully interact with the customer due to poor designing and inbuilt functions. However, it is easy to counter this argument by saying that this is simply an issue of the IVR not being developed to its full extent – in fact, with the personalizations available to IVR as of today, the creation of helpful IVR who are capable of understanding customers to a great extent, is quite possible.