Interactive voice response (IVR) is a technology that allows a computer to interact with humans through the use of voice and touch-tone telephone keypad inputs.
In telecommunications, IVR allows customers to interact with a company’s host system via a telephone keypad or by speech recognition, after which they can service their own inquiries by following the IVR dialogue.
IVR applications can respond with prerecorded or dynamically generated audio to further direct users on how to proceed. IVR applications can be used to control almost any function where the interface can be broken down into a series of simple interactions. IVR applications deployed in the network are sized to handle large call volumes.
Enterprises are increasingly turning to IVR to reduce the cost of common sales, service, collections, inquiry and support calls to and from their company.
Historically, IVR solutions have used pre-recorded voice prompts and menus to present information and options to callers, and touch-tone telephone keypad entry, to gather responses. Modern IVR solutions also enable input and responses to be gathered via spoken words with voice recognition.
IVR solutions also enable users to retrieve information including bank balances, flight schedules, product details, order status, movie show times, and more from any telephone.