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IVR systems interactive voice response

IVR Solutions

This section of our technical library presents information and documentation relating to IVR Development and custom IVR software and products. Business phone systems and toll free answering systems (generally 800 numbers and their equivalent) are very popular for service and sales organizations, allowing customers and prospects to call your organization anywhere in the country. The PACER and WIZARD IVR System is just one of many DSC call center phone system features..

What is IVR Software?. An Interactive Voice Response (IVR) processes inbound phone calls, plays recorded messages including information extracted from databases and the internet, and potentially routes calls to either inhouse service agents or transfers the caller to an outside extension.

Contact DSC today. to learn more about our IVR services and IVR application development software.

The Interactive Voice Response Alternative

By Suzanne Irizarry, Research Manager at Common Knowledge Research Services

Within the past year the market research industry has been bombarded with news and opinions on how technology is changing the way market research professionals are conducting business. It has been even indicated that research firms that do not "evolve with new technology research methods will surely die".

On one hand, we have the "Generation X" of market research professionals, and, particularly, their clients, who are in a hurried frenzy to design, recruit, get data, and deliver results - "yesterday." For them, online research is man's most clever invention after the wheel.

On the other hand, we have the "Boom Generation" like constituency whose strong set of tradition leads them to caution our industry about the Internet "generating a lot of bad research" due to "inappropriate sampling procedures and lack of representativeness."

Everyone is entitled to his/her opinion, but market research still needs to be conducted in an efficient, cost-effective manner, while representing a broad section of the universe studied. Conducting market research via traditional methods, such as Computer Assisted Telephone Interviews (CATI) and mall intercepts, is no longer the best choice for customer satisfaction, employee feedback studies and non-English surveys.

Today's busier American way of life has produced less cooperative and harder-to-reach respondents. Furthermore, traditional research methods involve, inevitably, interviewer biased results, particularly where data collection of open-ends is concerned. Additionally, sampling companies lack adequate Ethnics and non-English speakers samples.

One up-to-date solution, to market research data that must be gathered quickly, in-language and at a low cost, is the Interactive Voice Response Interviewing (IVR) method. This state-of-the-art technology has numerous advantages over traditional and online survey methods. By being an inbound automated survey process, respondents decide when and where they want to complete a survey. Delegating data collection to respondent's convenience, just a phone call away, 24/7, increases response rates, making IVR a cheaper and speedier electronic data collection method, than traditional CATI or intercept survey methods.

Additionally, in contrast to online survey methods, the telephone is a friendlier, easier to use, and more "human" device that most consumers are very familiar with, and have more access too, from a variety of locations, at their time of choice. Like web-based surveys, on the other hand, participants tend to respond more truthfully and more completely to the pre-recorded voice, than they would, otherwise, with live operators. Open-end comments are digitally recorded verbatim, with no interviewing editing, for easy review by phone, and can be added to CD ROM deliverables.

Survey invitations are distributed by hand, on-site, at retail locations, places of employment, or by mail, increasing representativeness of the population, since neither addresses nor phone numbers of the sample are necessary to conduct IVR research. In addition, being comfortable or even familiar with a computer keyboard is no longer an issue to consider with older and computer illiterate, or less-educated segments, thus making IVR participation an attractive and welcomed option across segments.

The fact that IVR can be recorded in any language is a highly desirable feature for research companies that are frustrated with the difficulties of finding, training, and compensating adequately, qualified bilingual interviewers. An IVR data collection company, experienced in conducting multicultural and multilingual surveys, is able to have the client's survey adapted to a culturally appropriate and relevant questionnaire, as well as translate both questions and responses into equivalent (not literal) language-specific questions and answers.

Common Knowledge, pioneer of the IVR research tool, has also developed a unique methodology that encompasses the best of both worlds. The Inclusive™ Survey product combines IVR Survey and Internet Survey methods using the same programming interface and data collection database - to be sure that no potential respondent is unable to participate in the research study.

In addition to the combined benefits of using the Inclusive™ Survey method: increased response rates, representativeness, and data collection speeds, clients are able to view research results real-time, on the Internet, or in a wide variety of reporting formats, regardless of the electronic collection method used by the respondents.

Many marketing and research professionals wonder about the response rates of IVR survey methods. According to Steve Lavine, president of Common Knowledge Inc, the response rate of IVR methods varies from less than 5% to more than 60%, since the response rate can be tuned to the available data collection timeframe and budget. "By tweaking the survey invitations and making changes to the incentive, we can tune the response rate to meet the client's needs. On average, however, response rates for IVR are in the neighborhood of 20%."

For a demonstration of the IVR survey technique phone 1-800-710-9149, and visit Common Knowledge at http://www.commonknowledge.com for further information.

Contact DSC today. to learn more about our IVR services and IVR application development software.