IVR (Interactive Voice Response) System is a tool which can serve hospitality industry in many ways. Most probably, not many people in hotel industry or IVR industry may have thought about it or implemented some really smart, useful, productive IVR application for it. Well, recently, I was advising one company how IVR is useful in hotel industry, I realised IVR can be deployed in hospitality industry right from hotel bookings to room service, from providing voicemail service to bill payment!
Here is how:-
1. Advertising and Hotel booking
Hotel booking can be completely automated and can be made very enthralling experience for the caller or prospective guest! For example, if the caller is an foreign national, she can be greeted in his native language ( using Caller ID, IVR can greet her in her native language, a pleasant surprise, right ?)! And she would be able to browse through various room types, tariff, availability in her own language. She would be even able to make payment and get confirmation code on voice for any room booking! And caller gets all information of the hotels, its amenities, facilities including weather of the city where the hotel is located. Yes, IVR will be able to offer information on must visit places of the area. Never forget, it can alert booking clerk of the booking immediately on SMS and he can view the report and transaction.
If the caller had stayed back before in the hotel, she could be greeted with her personalised name ( again using caller id, if she uses same phone number). She can be treated separately than first time callers too, by the intelligen IVR.
IVR can make outgoing calls for birth day wishes, anniversary wishes automatically from the hotel they stayed before. If IVR is some how integrated with location based system ( LBS) and finds out that a guest is in the same city where the hotel is, IVR can make an outgoing call and play an welcome message to the city!
So, IVR can book rooms, get payments, confirm booking to customer, store records and identity with credit card numbers, advertise hotel facilities, inform availability of rooms to caller, automatically identify nationality and speak in the same language!
Pray, why were you missing this piece of intelligent equipment and still in hospitality industry?
2. Room Service and in house service
IVR can automate many services in a hotel. Consider, you lift the phone and hear list of services offered by the hotel. On top of the menu, it is a complimentary bottle of wine! ( I would find that hotel and stay there!) All normal services like food, outgoing call, laundry, room cleaning etc. could be availed without having to speak to anyone! Also imagine, in a foreign land, you are ordering food in your own language! Yes, IVR can have option to switch to language as per nationality of the occupant in that room!
IVR can also offer host of other services like, wake up call, voicemail, do not disturb etc. One would be even able to check what is the current bill as on that day/time!
Did I say it works 24 hours a day, without tiring, always with pleasant voice and efficient way! Most probably, if you are not using intelligent IVR for your hotel or travel company, you have not deployed one of most useful equipment for generating more revenue for you, do marketing and promotion!