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Create Your NextGen IVR System with Real-Time Customer Profiles

Perhaps something like this has happened to you. I was looking at my bank statement online the other day, and realized that I hadn’t received a bill from my gas provider (let’s call them Gasgoco) in over two months. I checked online to see if I owed them money, and sure enough I did. I called customer service, looking to speak to a person since this wasn’t the kind of problem that an automated system could solve.

Gasgoco’s Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system didn’t allow me to press ‘0’ and get through to an operator. Instead, it gave me a myriad of options from menu to menu. After about 15 minutes of frustration, I realized that if I signaled that I wanted to “change or terminate service,” I would get through to a human.

After speaking to a first-level operator, I learned that the issue was more complex than I thought, and could have been an issue with either Gasgoco or my bank. I asked to speak to a supervisor.

After about 10 minutes more, I reached a supervisor, who was surprisingly silent and unhelpful while I explained the issue. When I asked what would be done, he said someone would get back to me in a few days.

Would you feel encouraged? I didn’t. I did receive a copy of my bill by email a few days later, but it didn’t solve the original problem.

I had to call back. The problem wasn’t resolved. On my way to work I gave Gasgoco a call and slogged through the endless menu of options and dead ends while I was driving, so as not to waste time during my day. It took about 35 minutes to reach a supervisor, most of which I spent passively waiting, allowing me to do other things.

This post is about those 35 minutes.

Had the IVR been able to match my phone number up with a log showing that my problem might not have been previously resolved, the IVR could have immediately asked if I was calling about my issue receiving bills and transferred me to a person who could help right away.

That's exactly the type of problem we're trying to solve with ClearpathSM, our omni-channel solution for companies whose customers use phone, email, web, and other channels to connect with them.

Clearpath IVR links your caller’s number with your database, allowing them to pick up where their issue was left off instead of navigating a seemingly endless menu to resolve their issues.

It can solve the issue I described above. And it limits menus to five options, which may help customers get through the IVR relatively unscathed – and maybe even help you to delight them.

The main challenge with IVR systems is that while IVR recordings are administratively supportive and helpful to call center staff, they have a negative impact on customers who expect a more responsive and interactive process. They want a fast, uncomplicated resolution to the reason they called.

Based on the ability of Clearpath to develop real-time customer profiles, the platform can identify and authenticate the IVR customer quickly through the phone number. Then, the system tailors the IVR response more accurately to the customer’s request, including the use of natural language, chatbots, keeping the callers place in the IVR system while toggling to additional options.


The Clearpath omni-channel solution goes beyond IVR. Learn how it provides faster, cost-effective customer-centered solutions for companies undergoing digital transformations.

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