Deploy An Ivr Bot To Improve Customer Self Service

Deploy an IVR Bot to Improve Customer Self Service

Automated customer interaction is the backbone of any customer-facing communications strategy. Since the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a sharp surge in calls to customer service, particularly in industries such as banking, hospitality, insurance, and health.

Moreover, research has shown that nearly 90% of people prefer voice interaction instead of navigating a complex phone menu. However, it can be challenging for organizations to deal with the high volume of incoming customer calls.

For one, contact centers have limited resources to handle the massive influx of calls. Secondly, voice-based channels are not only expensive but difficult to scale. Additionally, many customers communicate via speech but may prefer a self-service channel to convey their requests.

In such a scenario, interactive voice response (IVR) bots can provide an intelligent, engaging, and natural self-service way to support customers – anytime and anywhere.

Let’s explore.

IVR Bot to Improve Customer Self Service

IVR bots are computer programs that can converse like people and simultaneously service an unlimited number of requests, provide 24X7 support, answer customer queries instantly, and decrease business costs.

The bots use artificial intelligence (AI), natural language processing (NLP), and machine learning (ML) technologies to process customer requests, enable them to self-transact, learn from past conversations, provide personalized solutions to their queries, or escalate calls to a human agent when needed.

Customers can get immediate and accurate responses in the language of their choice – it’s fast, scalable, cost-effective, and improves first-call resolution rates.

Therefore, deploying IVR bots infuses agility in customer service operations, allowing agents to focus on the most critical customer requests and tasks that add value to the organization.

Using Microsoft Azure AI to build an automated IVR chatbot

For Microsoft customers looking to build IVR bots, Microsoft Azure AI boasts all crucial elements that help build an automated IVR solution.

Backed by the Microsoft Azure cloud platform, the solution can manage speech requests via Teams, Skype, and the Microsoft Bot Framework with tools for data ingestion, data storage, data processing, and advanced analytics.

Core Azure Services and Microsoft technologies that help build the IVR bot

  • Microsoft’s Natural Language Processing technology

IVR bots leverage natural language processing (NLP) to understand the nuances of the human language, including grammar, synonyms, and slang.

  • Speech service (Bing Speech API or Cognitive Services Speech Service)

The Speech service transcribes raw speech data into text form.

  • Natural Language Understanding (NLU) technology

Language Understanding (LUIS) identifies customer intent and spoken entities from the transcribed text.

Example – If the bot says, “I want to place an order for a grey washing machine.”

Here, “place an order” is the intent, and the “grey washing machine” (product category) is the entity

  • Microsoft Bot Framework

Manages the call workflow and processes conversation results.

  • Other supporting technologies

Azure Web app, Azure SQL, Azure Cosmos DB, etc.

Learn More: Interactive voice response app with bot

Essential features of an IVR bot for improved customer self-service

  • Intent extraction and analysis
  • Ability to pause, listen, and respond accordingly whenever a customer barges in during an ongoing interaction
  • Ability to process information and act at the same pace at which the customer speaks
  • Optimal integration with the contact center database to know the caller history, identify the likely reason for the call, and tailor suggestions based on the customer’s persona.
  • Ability to hand over the call to a human agent or subject matter expert (SME) when required.
  • Machine learning capabilities to improve response accuracy and learn from past customer conversations

How can Acuvate help?

As a Microsoft Gold Partner, we at Acuvate helps clients build IVR bots and improve customer self-service with our intuitive, low-code bot-builder platform called BotCore.

  • The low-code, visual design interface allows the quick deployment of bots.
  • Seamless integration with legacy enterprise systems and AI services
  • Multilingual capabilities enable organizations to engage with customers in their native language
  • We leverage the best of Microsoft technologies, including AI, NLP, Azure Cognitive Services, and LUIS.

To know more about BotCore, please feel free to schedule a personalized consultation with our experts.