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Resources » Overcoming Unique Challenges Associated With Multi-site Interactive Voice Response (IVR)

As we have grown and dealt with multiple customers over the years, one of the biggest challenges we have seen is with customers that have a lot of distributed markets and multi-site IVRs. The challenge is that there is a kind of push-pull dynamic between centralization and standardization of the IVR solution versus market specific solutions. Just about every market thinks that their customers are unique in some way, shape or form, and they are in a lot of ways. You can go to one side of the country and customer demographics are going to be different from those on the other side of the country. Typically, the challenge is trying to come to some sort of agreement or some sort of consensus on a standardized solution that is going to work for multiple markets.

When we are designing for a customer that has multiple sites or multiple markets, there are a number of things that may need to be considered depending on their strategy. Often, customers are trying to provide a more common experience to the callers and avoid having multiple applications to maintain. Obviously, if you can have one application that everybody uses, it is a lot less expensive to maintain. It is also a lot less expensive to build when compared to each and every market having a different application design that leaves you with multiple applications and offers a different experience from market to market. That is not to say that markets on the East Coast, for example, might not have different demographics than markets on the West Coast, so you have to try to account for some level of configurability in your design to allow for those variations. It can be very feasible to configure the application to do different things with its menus such as offer different self-service functions. It could also be as simple as configuring the application to offer different prompts to the callers, or having a different professional voice that sounds more like somebody from the demographic that is calling.

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