When a customer calls your contact center, the first thing they hear is an Interactive Voice Response (IVR). They help customers enable themselves with information or find the right agent to resolve their concerns. While a good IVR system can elevate the customer’s experience and save agent time, a bad one can be incredibly frustrating.
To avoid that, several organizations are moving towards cloud IVRs. This blog post discusses the differences between traditional and cloud IVRs, and the latter’s benefits for various businesses.
The fundamental difference between traditional IVR and cloud IVR is where they’re hosted. The former is hosted on-premise and the latter on the cloud. However, the applications and benefits of these vary significantly. Cloud IVRs:
1. Power remote teams
A traditional IVR, being hosted on-prem, requires agents to work from a particular connected physical location. Cloud IVR, on the other hand, can be used from anywhere. So, your teams working from home or even your field agents can use them effortlessly.
2. Cost-effective to set up and maintain
You don’t need any capital investment or new hardware to set up a cloud based ivr solution. Most of them are pay-as-you-go keeping your maintenance costs down.
3. Scale with your business
To add new agents or call capacity, you need not make additional capital investments. Cloud IVR allows you to scale dynamically based on even seasonal needs.
4. Offer high availability and integration capabilities
Cloud IVRs offer up to 99.99% availability and integrate with a wide range of business applications such as CRMs.
Startups and small and medium enterprises don’t have the luxury of budgets, time and IT talent to run and maintain on-prem call center systems. For them, IVRs offer significant benefits such as
Cloud IVRs can be set up easily at the click of a few buttons. You can use the design templates and automated tools to set up quickly. For example, Exotel’s easy-to-use visual drag-drop dashboard and applets allow business users to build their own IVR call flow.
Startups and SMBs grow rapidly. Yet, they don’t have the capital or the time to build new on-prem infrastructure to adapt to scaling communication needs. Cloud IVRs deliver rapid and dynamic scalability, making them perfectly suitable for SMBs and startups. For instance, if you are a travel company that needs additional capacity only for summers, Cloud IVRs can enable that too!
On-premise or traditional IVRs are expensive. Apart from the high cost of purchasing hardware, you also need a dedicated space to store them, experts to maintain them, etc. Cloud IVRs give you freedom from such expenses and inconveniences. The cloud infra is managed by the provider, and the responsibility of keeping it always on is on them. You just pay for what you use.
Better customer experience
Cloud IVRs have better performance. Exotel offers 99.97% uptime, including operator uptimes. We have inbuilt redundancy measures, keeping your line always up. The call quality is also likely to be better with cloud IVRs, delivering a better customer experience.
Large businesses have larger demands. In addition to the benefits outlined above, cloud IVRs offer more complex features for large businesses, such as
Large businesses typically use a wide variety of tools such as CRMs, chatbots, dialers, ticketing systems, etc. They also use multiple channels to communicate with their customers, such as SMS, emails, calls, etc. Any new tool must integrate seamlessly with its existing tech stack to work effectively.
Integrating traditional IVR costs significant money and time. According to McKinsey, poor channel integration is one of the biggest reasons IVRs fail.
Cloud IVRs, on the other hand, offer plug-n-play integrations with many tools and channels. Exotel offers 1-click integrations with a number of tools such as Zoho CRM, Shopify, Zendesk, etc.
Some of the advanced features enterprises find most useful are:
2. Enhanced productivity
While delivering customer service at enterprise scale, agent and call center productivity is critical. Automated IVRs can reduce wait times. Analytics can offer a bird’s eye view of your call center performance to enable you to optimize effectively.
As you can see, cloud IVRs offer significant performance, and their efficiency improves whether you’re a scaling startup, small business, or large enterprise. To see how Exotel’s cloud IVR can transform your call center operations, book a demo now.