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Hosted IVR is gaining popularity in India

Recently I have traveled North and Eastern part India and met many people who are either using IVR systems or are dealing with call centres. While interacting with them, one thing I realised that, people are now warming up to the concept of hosted IVR in India. Most interesting part is, even bigger companies are now a days receptive to the idea of hosted IVR, which few years ago was a complete no, no.

I think, there are two major factors which have helped people warming up to the hosted IVR services :-

1. Reliable Internet connectivity
2. Cost Benefit : Pay as per usage model

1. Reliable Internet Connectivity
In the last few years, quality of internet connectivity has gone up manifold and downtime is no longer frequent unlike few years ago in India. Reliable and dedicated internet connectivity was also costly and not available easily, specially outskirts of cities, where industries tend to exist!

This kind of internet connectivity has helped integration information available at the premises of an organization with of IVR system hosted some where else using internet connectivity. One can say, “IVR in cloud” is now possible, works reliably thanks to good internet connectivity.

2. Cost Benefit : Pay as per usage model
I think, I would give credit to hosted IVR providers in India, who have been able to convince IVR users about the cost benefit of using hosted IVR over on-premise IVR. It is not only about initial investment in hardware and software, but also keeping updated with latest CTI hardware and IVR tools.
Most of the people I have interacted with, have had clear idea about how hosted IVR can reduce initial investment an reduce time to live with IVR. Many of them were also happy with accessing IVR logs online by just visiting a website and logging in.

Apart from above two major factors, I think many business houses become focused on their core competence while outsourcing business processes to professionals. Many people were more comfortable with one time capital expenditure than recurring operational expenditures. But, in IVR, there is always an fixed or variable operational expenditure in the form of telephone rental and outbound call cost. So, many have started opting for just operational expense without any major capital expense and hosted IVR just fits in between.

Most probably, with slowing of economy world wide, even bigger companies might be finding it easier to go with “pay per usage” hosted IVR system to server their customers.

I would be happy to know feedback from others how they feel about hosted IVR in India.

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