A CDE Definition
The generation of voice output by computer. It provides prerecorded information either with or without selection by the caller. The voice is typically segments of digitized human voice that are strung together to make sentences, but it could be synthesized voice. As the technology matures, totally synthetic voices are sounding much more natural. Interactive voice response (IVR) allows interactive manipulation of a database. See IVR.
(Interactive Voice Response) An automated telephone information system that speaks to the caller with a combination of fixed voice menus and data extracted from databases in real time. The caller responds by pressing digits on the telephone or speaking words or short phrases. Applications include bank-by-phone, flight-scheduling information and automated order entry and tracking.
Handle the Easy Questions
IVR systems allow callers to get needed information 24 hours a day. They are also used as a front end to call centers in order to route as many calls as possible away from costly human agents. In such cases, IVR does not replace the agent, but keeps them from constantly having to answer the same simple questions.
The IVR System
Most IVR systems reside in PCs equipped with specialized PCI cards that connect to the telephone system to switch the calls. Systems can be networked on LANs and come with software that lets the developer create applications quickly. Most allow for the building of call flows by dragging and dropping icons of functions. See IVVR, voice portal, ASR, ACD, CTI and V-Commerce.
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