IVR systems get no respect.
An IVR could be considered a great addition to a call center. It handles all incoming calls, resolves the simple requests for service through interactive applications, routes the calls to the most appropriate agent, and captures identifying information to pass along . Is the perfect attendant and can scale to hundreds of simultaneous incoming calls.
It should be considered a success story. Users don’t want to use it.
When first introduced – only functioning as a phone-tree with routing functions – people liked the novelty of it. The novelty wore off and the system showed its true colors: an automated routing mechanism with little forethought put into at deployment time, no integration or interactive abilities, and few tales of success.
Vendors quickly began to improve their offerings, create better programming interfaces, provide more interactive functions and add voice recognition. Today is far better than it was initially, and is actually useful to automatically solve around 30% of the calls.
Twitter is moving along the same path.
I referenced in the past the problems with Twitter and how you should only consider it another channel for customer service. Research showed companies used it mostly as an escalation tool to the call center, or to create tickets; few cases are solved via Twitter. It is closely related to the IVR. Focus on what Twitter can do well and stop thinking that it can do more than it can.
We will see innovations for the use of Twitter in Customer Service that will make it a better tool. For now, use it as you use your IVR: automating large volume of interactions, routing and creating tickets, and provide a listening ear for feedback.
Anything else, simply cannot be done now. Do you agree?