Have you ever called a business and encountered what seems like a never-ending list of automated phone menu options? If you’re like me, you probably scream the word “agent” , or perhaps you try the old hitting zero multiple times trying to bypass the auto attendant greetings in order to reach a live human being?
Either way by this point your frustration level is likely through the roof, and your blood pressure has reached the boiling point. Businesses just don’t seem to get it! Customers no longer want to deal with impersonal experiences, and although auto attendants true goal is to help direct callers to the proper agent or department, one of the biggest gripes with automated attendants is that they feel like a roadblock: a system designed to keep callers away. As a result your auto attendant recordings may be alienating your customers to the point of them jumping ship.
Generally, the issue is when you don’t seek the services of a professional who will not only provide a pleasant and welcoming sounding voice, but also develop the design and flow, so that callers have the best experience possible. We’ve provided below our list of that should be taken into account. We like to think of them as the experts guide to the do’s and don’ts of auto attendant recordings.
Auto Attendant Recording Do’s.
1. Do begin with a welcome greeting and appreciation for their call and business. Something warm and welcoming will help keep things calm and easy. But you must also remember it needs to be professional as this will be the first point of contact for many.
2. Do keep the greeting short and to the point. No one wants to have to sit through a 2-minute-long monologue when all they want to do is get to an agent as quick as possible. Sometimes less truly is more, which holds true with phone menu greetings.
3. Do offer callers the option to visit to your website if there are self-service functions available. This way, callers might actually be able to fix their problems before even getting to an agent, or find the information they need even quicker online. Again, it’s all about reducing the friction in the process and creating better experiences.
4. Do place the most important and frequently used options as the first choices in the auto attendant’s list. If most callers happen to call about billing questions, then billing should be the first choice that the attendant offers to callers.
5. Do let callers know right away if any menu options have changed. Routine callers might be accustomed to spamming the same keys to get to the department they need, but it’s not uncommon for your business to have to switch around things from time to time.
6. Do leave the zero-key reserved for the specific function of jumping straight to a receptionist, or agent. This way, the callers with the utmost urgent issues can skip the entire process and speak to a live human as soon as possible.
Auto Attendant Recording Don’ts.
1. Don’t welcome callers with a massive monologue that drags on for over a minute, this will just frustrate everyone. Make sure to limit the amount of information in the greeting. For example, if you have a slogan that’s great, and perhaps you want to mention it. That’s fine. Just don’t repeat it over and over as it will sound clunky.
2. Don’t overwhelm your callers with the sheer amount of options. This may in fact be the most import “don’t” when it comes to reducing frustration. You don’t want callers to have to sit there waiting for 2 minutes just to figure out the right button to press.
3. Don’t force your website down caller’s throat’s if there will be nothing of value for them there. Chances are, many might have already checked the website, or are looking to directly speak to an agent. If your business has self-service options online then a simple reminder is good, but constantly bombarding callers with your website will make them feel annoyed.
4. Don’t always promote the fact that the zero key is reserved for that quick jump to agents. While this seems a little contradictory, the auto attendant is there for a reason: to guide callers to the proper department and agent that can best serve them. If all your callers know that zero goes right to an agent or live operator, you’ll be negating the entire process and cause a huge bottleneck in the system.
5. Don’t ever disconnect or hang up on callers. Some auto attendants can be configured to disconnect callers if an option is not chosen within a certain time frame, or if they don’t respond to an agent quick enough. Nothing is more frustrating than after waiting to hear all those options, to then have your call disconnected.
6. Don’t repeat the same wording and pleasantries for every single option and line of dialogue. It might seem polite if your auto attendant is always saying “please” and “thank you,” but this can get old really quick and simply adds extra wasted time to the process. Remember, the entire goal is to get callers the help and support they need as soon as possible.
Since your auto attendant is generally going to be first point of contact with your business for most clients, it’s imperative that the process goes as smooth as possible. Think about our list of do’s and don’ts and how it applies to you. Your business should aim to inform callers, but avoid overwhelming them with a massive list of options. You want your auto attendant to be a simple guide to help callers receive the support they need, not a confusing mess that puts a wall between callers and agents.
Are you ready to get started with professional recordings for your telephone systems automated attendant? Contact Original On Hold and we’ll handle the script development, design flow and we feature an extensive roster of voice talents to be the voice of your brand.