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September 2019

The Missing and Critical CX link...

In today’s time-pressed world - with instant expectations and immediate fulfillment literally at our fingertips (think grocery shopping; meal delivery; Uber and Lyft) - understanding the user experience has gone from a ‘nice to have’ to a critical, competitive leverage point.


In the realm of interactive voice response systems (IVRs), the qualitative component tends to get short shrift.

  • Journey mapping, while important, is not an acceptable replacement for watching the real time journey of your callers. 
    While interesting, the personas of your callers are often based on consultants (e.g., advertising agencies) that have never actually seen your callers interact with your system.

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  • The best way to evaluate that real time journey is Usability Testing, conducted by experienced professionals who have no vested interest in
    the technology.

  • At a focus group facility or via closed circuit, watching a representative cross-section of your callers in person, in guided, one-on-one calls to your live system - or a “Wizard of Oz” system built for ‘what if’ evaluations - is the best and most cost-efficient means of obtaining visceral, real-time feedback. Facial reactions, verbal asides, hand gestures and non-verbal clues, and immediate feedback - following 4-5 typical or targeted (i.e., underperforming) call types are essential components of the full customer experience.

Whether your IVR is touchtone, speech (natural language or directed speech) or a combination of touchtone and speech, this process is eye-opening.  It doesn’t replace quantitative research or journey mapping…but it’s a perfect complement to obtain the complete customer experience picture.

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