I found this in my old drafts folder, no idea what I never posted it, but I’ll go into it and post it now.
You might have seen this commercial. The guy is on the phone trying to talk to an agent for some bank. He has to say his password, then repeat it, then say yes, then say no… so on and so forth. His kitchen catches on fire, his broom catches on fire and when he finally gets through an agent, he loses reception.Well, the point of the commercial is that with Citibank (Citigroup) all you have to do is press 0 to talk to an agent. However, this does not take into effect why you have to go through various prompts before speaking to an agent. While pressing 0 is great, it will not make your life easier.
Now, some of you know that I work with phone systems for a leaving. The “in”-famous I’ll make your toaster answer calls while making toast at the same time quote, but I digress. The reason it feels that some business will make you jump through hoops before talking to an agent is simple. Money. The most expense investment a corporation has is and will continue to be its staff. A person making minimum wage answering phones will be more expensive than some of the top of the line servers out now. So, why does that matter? Having the phone system handle your call and hopefully answer your question or frustrate you enough to hang up, allows the company minimize the need for staffing. Bottom line is the more you talk to a computer and the less you talk to a person, the more money a corporate makes.
Now, there are some very useful IVR systems out there and they do serve a purpose, however they have to be carefully planned and constantly updated. So remember me next time you press 0 for an agent and it doesn’t work, I usually disable that feature :-).