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IVR Usability has found few takers: Study Reveals

Software Advice, A Gartner Company, conducted market study about IVR( Interactive Voice Response) System installed in customer-service centric companies in the Fortune 500 and collected metrics around the average wait times, length of option recordings and the number of options in the top menu.

This study reveals interesting data. There are only 30% IVR Systems which use both voice and dialpad inputs for choosing any menu option, and 42% uses dialpad (DTMF Key input) only input option and rest 28% uses voice input only.

Another interesting find is, 74% of IVR sampled use female voice while 26% uses male voice. While this is on expected line, but still 26% use of male voice seem high.

IVR Input Method:



Number of menu traversing before human agent is connected:


Number of menu options in top or main menu:


Number of menus before self-service menus:


Content of IVR Welcome Prompt:


Average Menu options Duration:


Whopping 30% IVR Systems provide 5 or more menu options in its top menu which could be called a optimum use of scarce real estate, but surely not an user friendly feature in IVR Systems which plays menu options sequentially. Still, good thing is that, their are just 16% which has five of or more options in top min menu.

The full analysis of the research study could be read here.

The findings int he research is really interesting which shows that many companies have adopted good IVR usability approach, but many have yet to adopt. It would be interesting to relate this findings with “successful call rates” by those IVR users where a successful call is defined as a call where the caller has had performed at least one self-service task successfully.

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{ 3 comments… add one }
  • Sriram September 24, 2015, 3:38 am

    From my personal experience, I would like to use any IVR due to following reason

    1. language of native
    2. easy navigating small menus
    3. option to reach to operator [this is required for senior people/ non-educated people
    4. having a call back service mechanism as applicable

    We make difference at every step
    Haritham Events – the top wedding planners in chennai

    • admin September 25, 2015, 3:24 am

      Agree with your views. Local language is a must to engage with users.

  • edward reed June 7, 2018, 9:07 am

    I understand and agree your point. Local language using important one.

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