SmartPhones and Utility IVR – A Perfect Match
Jacada and Vocantas join to bring utility customers self-service with visual interactive menus
ATLANTA & OTTAWA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jacada, Inc., and Vocantas announce that Visual IVR capabilities are now available with Vocantas’ Utilities OnCall solution. Utility companies looking for a new IVR solution will be excited that the proven successful Utilities OnCall solution now extends to the mobile device and to the utility’s website. Vocantas’ existing Utility customers can immediately take advantage of this powerful visual self-serve experience that is quick to deploy, saves money and is easy to use. The Utilities OnCall Visual IVR is now available for any smartphone platform and website, with the addition of Jacada’s cutting-edge technologies into the Vocantas Utilities OnCall platform.
“Improving customer service by speeding up the time it takes to check a balance, pay a bill, or report an outage will not only improve end-user satisfaction but will ultimately reduce operational costs for the utility, as customers increasingly self-serve rather than hit the call centre queue”
“Visual IVR puts the power of the smartphone graphic screen into the Utility customer’s hand,” says Guy Yair, Jacada’s Co-CEO. “Improving customer service by speeding up the time it takes to check a balance, pay a bill, or report an outage will not only improve end-user satisfaction but will ultimately reduce operational costs for the utility, as customers increasingly self-serve rather than hit the call centre queue,” Yair concludes.
The prolific use of smartphones has many Utility Companies facing the option of building an expensive custom app for smartphone users to access customer services and conduct business but Vocantas has come to their rescue with an inexpensive and fast–to-deploy solution. Rather than building a custom app which requires stand-alone, back-end systems at a significant cost to the organization, the Visual IVR allows organizations to extend their already robust Vocantas IVR into the smartphone menu and directly onto their website, without the development and customization of new infrastructure. Expanding their IVR services directly to the graphical interface of the smartphone and website allows even more opportunities for utility customers to efficiently navigate through IVR menus and quickly communicate with and do business with the Utility Company with the touch of a finger. Utilities can now interact with their end-users “smarter” by taking advantage of the power of the mobile device. The Visual IVR will offer customers the opportunity to include a photo of their meter reading, or send the Utility a GPS locator of their position in case of reporting an outage or service interruption.
“At the end of the day, Utility companies want to provide excellent customer service to accompany the delivery of essential utility services to their clients, at a price tag that doesn’t add costs to the end users bill,” said Gary Hannah, Vocantas CEO. “Using Visual IVR Utilities OnCall, utilities can put the power of smartphone technology to work, and give their clients an awesome experience using self-serve tools. Why not pay your utility bill with the swipe of your finger on your smartphone, with as much effort as it takes to choose a song from a menu on your iPod?” asked Hannah.
Utilities already rely on the benefits of Interactive Voice Response (IVR) to serve their customers. Extending existing IVR infrastructure for accepting bill payment, recording meter reads and checking account balances, to the screen of their end-users smartphone is a natural migration for utility companies. Taking advantage of the handsets that end customers already use as part of their daily lives ensures that Vocantas utility customers have an opportunity to keep step with technology.
“Continuing to offer the best in IVR technology is a job we take seriously at Vocantas, and Visual IVR is the best new offering available today,” said Hannah. “We offer our customers excellent solution options and industry expert advice to help them select the right solution to meet their end user needs.”
Jacada solutions improve an organization’s customer experiences and reduce their operational costs. Jacada enables them to deliver advanced customer and agent interactions by implementing cutting edge mobile customer service and visual IVR solutions, simplified agent desktops, and process optimization products. Customers can benefit from an improved customer service experience at every touch point with the organization, whether at the call center, on the mobile, or at the retail store. Jacada projects often deploy in less than six months, and customers often realize a complete return on investment within 12 months of deployment. Founded in 1990, Jacada operates globally with offices in Atlanta, USA; London, England; Munich, Germany; and Herzliya, Israel. More information is available at Jacada.com.
Vocantas is a leading developer of hosted and premise-based interactive voice response solutions (IVRS) using advanced computer telephony and speech recognition technology to provide businesses and service providers with more efficient outreach capabilities. Vocantas solutions help organizations in the higher education, utilities, healthcare and customer service environments improve outreach and engagement while reducing operating costs.