“While 80% of companies claim to offer superior customer service, only 8% of their actual customers assign them the same grade” – Customer Think Article
So, why this gap?
This gap between customer expectations and reality is often because of the lack of adequate feedback measures to allow customers to reach out to a brand through multiple channels.
Another reason can be customer feedback slipping through the cracks because of live agents hard-pressed with the call load. Those organisations which fail to recognize these loopholes in customer service often miss out on growth prospects.
But, what if some companies don’t take feedback at all?
It’s the fear of criticism that prevents many companies from being open to customer feedback. Some organisations are also under the impression that negative feedback on social media can hamper their brand identity. As a result, they end up performing poorly in terms of customer experience.
So, where should they start?
There is no scope for complacency in today’s customer-driven business world. Along with being more open to customer feedback, businesses also need to be quick in their response to queries and concerns.
The traditional process of attending customer queries through calls is not proving sufficient in todays’ time. Do you know, around 57 percent of customer calls are put on hold every day!This alarming statistic demands customer-centric businesses to adopt advanced technologies like IVR and live chat. IVR solution can help companies in attending customer queries quickly through dynamically-recorded audio.
IVR – What is it?
We are all accustomed with that lovely voice telling us to “press 1 for feedback, press 2 for sales…”. But, have you ever been curious about the technology that makes automatic voice responses possible? Well, It’s the popular IVR technology that is already creating a buzz in today’s customer-centric business world.
We’ll use the example of bungee jumping to make the concept of IVR simpler. You must be aware that this adventurous activity involves jumping from a height while connected to an elastic chord. Just as the elastic chord ensures smooth and safe bungee jumping experience for people, similarly IVR acts as that elastic chord that helps businesses keep their customer engaged with a brand and deliver positive customer experiences throughout.
How Can It Help Improve Your Customer Service?
67% of customers agree that bad customer service experience is a major reason of their failed association with a brand.
Customer service agents are overloaded with never-ending customer calls related to different issues. Irrespective of their efforts to pay undivided attention to every customer call, they often fail to give personalised service.
Poor customer records at their disposal and bandwidth crunch are major reasons why service agents end up sending canned responses to customers or giving customers the run-around.
However, with the use of IVR software, service agents can boost up their efforts and effectively minimise errors in providing prompt and personalised solutions to customers.
1. Reduced Errors in Query handling = Productive Live Agents
With the use of IVR software, businesses can provide self-service opportunities to customers, where they can choose an automated instant service or ask for a call back from live agents.
Customers can engage with a company’s host system through telephone keypad, and a large number of inquiries can be serviced automatically with IVR voice dialogue. This way, service agents can ease their burden and achieve higher productivity in terms of delivering outstanding customer experiences.
IVR improves the productivity and efficiency of service agents by gathering key information from customers and accordingly routing calls automatically to the right agent. It is also a useful tool for segmenting calls on the basis of priority. Most pressing calls can be transferred to those agents who have dealt successfully with similar queries in the past.
2. Productive Live Agents = Consistent Customer Experience
When customer calls get routed automatically to the most suitable agents according to the requirement and priority, there are lesser chances of errors in query handling.
Also, IVR can identify the purpose of a customer call and provide live agents the requisite knowledge base. When service agents don’t have to transfer calls repeatedly for gathering information, they can increase the rate of first-call resolution.
Average waiting time of customers will also reduce significantly, as live agents don’t have to waste time gathering information about every customer.
By resolving queries rapidly and handling calls efficiently, brands can ensure an awesome customer experience. Customer expectations in terms of promptness and effectiveness of customer service can be fulfilled consistently with IVR.
Customers can voice their queries round the clock through the IVR outbound calls and are more likely to get resolution quickly and automatically.
3. Consistent Customer Experience = Increased Loyalty
Through the predictive behavioural routing feature of IVR system, past interactions with a customer can be analysed to deliver personalised experiences. When customers are getting personalised services for their queries consistently, they feel valued and appreciated. And, valued customers are more likely to stay loyal to a brand.
As per a report, 54 percent of millennials got detached from a brand because of their poor customer service. Additionally, 50% of Gen Xers and 52% of baby boomers also find that customer service is the key to long-term association with a brand.
Considering these stats, it can be said firmly that the sooner an organisation adopts the latest contact centre solutions, the longer they can sustain themselves in the competitive landscape.
4. Efficient Self-Service Options
In today’s fast-paced world, customers often prefer to find solutions to their queries independently, without having to wait for live agents.
Offering self-service options like Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), knowledge bases, and online tutorials empowers customers to take control of their own problem-solving process.
This not only reduces the workload of live agents but also provides customers with quick and convenient solutions to common issues.
By providing easily accessible and comprehensive self-help resources, businesses can empower customers to resolve their concerns efficiently, leading to improved customer satisfaction.
5. Personalised Interactions
Customers don’t want to feel like just another transaction. Treating customers as unique individuals and tailoring interactions to their preferences and history can significantly enhance their overall experience.
By utilising customer data and analysing past interactions, businesses can create personalised responses that resonate with customers. This level of personalisation shows that their needs are not only understood but also valued by the company.
When customers feel acknowledged and appreciated, they are more likely to develop a positive perception of the brand and remain loyal over time.
6. Swift Response Times
In the age of instant communication, customers value quick responses to their inquiries.
Implementing systems that prioritise and even automate response times can prevent customers from feeling neglected or frustrated.
This can be achieved through streamlined processes, real-time alerts, and AI-driven tools that assist in routing and prioritising customer inquiries.
By providing prompt responses, businesses demonstrate that customer concerns are a priority, thereby building trust and fostering positive customer relationships
7. Multi-Channel Support
Customers today engage with businesses through various communication channels, such as phone, email, chat, WhatsApp API, and social media.
Offering support across multiple channels ensures that customers can choose the platform most convenient for them.
This versatility enhances accessibility, allowing customers to interact with the company in a way that suits their preferences.
Whether they prefer the immediacy of a chat conversation or the formality of an email, multi-channel support ensures a seamless and satisfying customer experience across different touchpoints.
8. Skilled and Empowered Agents
Live agents are the frontline representatives of a company’s customer service.
Ensuring that agents are well-trained, knowledgeable, and empowered to make decisions is crucial for effective problem-solving.
Agents armed with comprehensive product knowledge and the authority to address issues creatively can provide solutions that are tailored to each customer’s unique situation.
When customers feel that their concerns are being taken seriously by capable professionals, it fosters a sense of value and respect.
9. Continuous Feedback Loop
Creating a continuous feedback loop with customers can provide invaluable insights into areas that require improvement.
Actively seeking customer feedback through surveys, reviews, and direct interactions demonstrates a commitment to enhancing the customer experience.
This fosters a sense of partnership between the company and its customers, showing that their opinions are not only heard but also influence the company’s efforts to improve its services.
10. Proactive Issue Resolution
Anticipating and addressing potential issues before they escalate showcases a proactive approach to customer service.
This approach not only prevents customer frustration but also demonstrates the company’s dedication to ensuring a smooth customer journey.
Utilising data analytics and predictive algorithms, businesses can identify patterns of issues and take preemptive measures to resolve them.
Proactive issue resolution instils confidence in customers, assuring them that their needs are being proactively met.
11. Emotional Intelligence
Customer service is more than just solving problems—it’s about understanding and empathising with customers’ emotions.
Training agents in emotional intelligence equips them to connect with customers on a deeper level, acknowledging their feelings and addressing their concerns in a compassionate manner.
This skill becomes particularly important in handling sensitive or escalated situations, where the ability to empathise can turn a negative experience into a positive one, strengthening customer relationships.
12. Clear Communication
Effective communication is the cornerstone of successful customer service interactions.
Agents must be skilled in conveying information clearly, avoiding jargon, and ensuring that customers fully understand the solutions provided and the steps they need to take.
This clarity in communication minimises misunderstandings and enhances the overall customer experience.
13. Integration of Technology
Leveraging technology, such as AI-powered Interactive Voice Response (IVR) systems and chatbots, can revolutionise customer service.
IVR number allow customers to navigate through options and find answers via phone interactions. Introducing technology like visual IVR can enhance the IVR experience by offering interactive visual menus on smartphones.
AI-powered chatbots provide instant responses to routine queries, freeing up live agents to focus on more complex issues.
However, it’s essential to strike a balance between automation and the human touch, ensuring that customers receive personalised attention when needed.
Let’s learn about IVR in contact centers: Enhancing the customer experience with IVR systems (case studies)
Some of the successful case studies that highlights about IVR in contact center solution are listed below
1. The Art of Living – MyOperator Success Story
The Art of Living organisation, a renowned global non-profit, encountered difficulties in promoting their programs and managing high call volumes with limited resources.
MyOperator stepped in with a solution involving toll-free numbers and an IVR system, streamlining call management without extra expenses.
This led to enhanced trust and accessibility for followers, round-the-clock availability, and effective promotion. The Art of Living praised MyOperator’s services and coordination for facilitating successful communication.
Trusts and NGOs can learn from this success and explore MyOperator’s cloud call center solutions through a free demo to boost institutional growth.
2. The Internshala- MyOperator Success Story
Internshala, the popular online platform for training and internships based in Gurugram, faced challenges due to a high volume of calls from job seekers.
They were missing calls, compromising customer experience, and couldn’t handle multiple calls at once, resulting in 24/7 unavailability.
This allowed Internshala to handle multiple calls simultaneously and led to a significant 38% reduction in missed customer calls.
3. The TravelTriangle – MyOperator Success Story
TravelTriangle, the Gurugram-based online travel agency with a wide global presence, encountered challenges in managing customer inquiries beyond regular hours and locations.
Relying on a landline phone led to missed calls and unattended leads. Partnering with MyOperator brought solutions through toll-free numbers and an IVR system, replacing the fixed landline approach.
MyOperator’s call center software, which includes call management features, ensured 24/7 availability, call tracking, and appropriate agent routing.
This resulted in a remarkable 62% increase in incoming calls and a 59% boost in deal closures for TravelTriangle.
The enhanced accessibility and reduced unattended leads played a pivotal role in achieving these positive outcomes, with an additional benefit during the Bali Volcano crisis through a dedicated IVR option for assistance.
4. The Ricoh and MyOperator’s Success Story
Ricoh, a prominent IT organisation focused on delivering excellent customer support, faced challenges in effectively tracking customer calls and maintaining caller data. These issues were crucial in the fast-paced IT and BPO industry.
MyOperator’s solution involved providing a virtual number and an IVR platform. The IVR system intelligently directed calls to the appropriate departments, enhancing query resolution and productivity.
The results were impressive, including improved agent performance analysis, follow-up on missed calls, efficient handling of high call volumes, enhanced inbound customer conversion, and better customer retention.
Ricoh praised the ease of managing inbound calls with MyOperator, leading to increased conversions and improved customer retention.
5. Apollo Healthcare – MyOperator Success Story
Apollo Healthcare, a prominent healthcare company in India encompassing hospitals, clinics, pharmacies, and telehealth centers, faced challenges in tracking marketing campaign success across their 8 verticals and managing patient inquiries effectively.
MyOperator stepped in with a solution, providing virtual numbers in India for each vertical and an IVR system to interact with callers and gather information.
With MyOperator’s assistance, Apollo significantly improved its marketing ROI tracking to 90-100%, gaining accurate insights into campaign success.
The streamlined patient inquiry management, especially from awareness campaigns, was achieved through MyOperator’s system.
Furthermore, Apollo Healthcare can now comprehensively track conversions, identifying which marketing efforts directly lead to patient interactions.
M G Nabi Baig, Digital Marketing Head at Apollo Healthcare, acknowledged MyOperator for their role in enhancing marketing ROI tracking and optimising patient inquiry management.
In a nutshell, IVR systems may significantly help organisations by improving the customer experience.
Companies can enhance customer satisfaction by streamlining customer interactions, reducing wait times, personalising encounters, implementing natural language processing, providing the opportunity to speak with an agent, and optimising call routing.
Investing in these tactics not only increases productivity but also indicates a dedication to providing outstanding customer service, building closer relationships with clients, and promoting business growth.