Companies who integrate IVR payments by phone into their bill-pay options will often see a 10 to 15 percent increase in revenue collected. That may seem like a rather bold statement. After all, you’re probably not the type of consumer who would pay a bill over the phone. Yet, there are still many reasons people choose to pay by phone and many reasons why businesses offer the option to pay by phone.
IVR Payments By Phone
Before we dig into the measurable impact we’ve seen in three industries, let’s review what it is. First, you’ve undoubtedly experienced an IVR or Interactive Voice Response system when you’ve called your bank or cable provider. A voice prompt asks you to select from a menu of options, each with a corresponding number. That would be an IVR in its most basic form. However, when the IVR asks you for an account number, it’s programmed to query external data sources, such as customer account information. In that case, the IVR is more advanced and able to interact and command computer systems. Now, we can easily envision the leap to accepting payments by phone. This simple animation illustrates the basic process:
Real-World Impact Of IVR Payments By Phone
Let’s look at the real impact of automated IVR payments in three industries. In each case, these customers were surprised by the actual business impact once they achieved customer adoption.
An extensive healthcare network with more than two million patients annually initially looked to improve internal efficiencies. Because, as their growth accelerated, so too were patients looking to pay their bills when calling patient services. Therefore, the cost of supporting phone payments processed manually during business hours had become a barrier to growth. Additionally, as patients needing to pay by phone couldn’t do so after hours, accounts receivables were beginning to increase.
We helped them offer a 24/7/365 automated IVR phone payments solution that integrated with their existing billing platform. After communicating the new service to patients on their website, offices, and invoices, the impact was profound. Not only did the automated IVR payments reduce costs and increase the efficiency of patient services, but accounts receivables also fell back to an acceptable level. In Q1 of 2021, they realized a 13% increase in electronic payments, including IVR payments. That means fewer paper checks to process.
Q1 2021 Evidence: 8,113 IVR payments
Q1 2021 Impact: $4.44 Million through IVR payments
Large Regional Utility
Concerned about PCI compliance, a large public utility needed to descope their risk and move from live customer service agents accepting payment information. However, as COVID restrictions began to take hold, a new urgency emerged; they longer accepted walk-in payments.
With their help, we fast-tracked the deployment of 24/7/365 IVR payments by phone, integrated with their existing billing portal. We also provided assistance and best-practices support for rapidly driving the adoption of IVR payments among customers. With all phone-based payments shifted from agents to the IVR, they reduced customer service costs and allowed their agents more time to deal with customer concerns. Most importantly, their customers were offered a convenient contactless payment method during the peak of COVID restrictions.
Q1 2021 Evidence: 76,214 IVR payments
Q1 2021 Impact: $13.9 Million through IVR payments
A growing residential and commercial waste management company initially needed to provide automated IVR payments as a competitive advantage. At the time, they were competing for a sizeable municipal contract where PCI DSS compliant payments by phone were an RFP requirement.
We assisted them in responding to the RFP while working to deploy IVR payments as part of their billing portal. As a result, they were able to win the business and subsequent municipal contracts, thanks to their new competitive advantage. An unexpected side effect was the significant reduction in calls to service agents, now that automated phone payments were available. This shift helped them reassign service agents to new roles to help further their growth.
Q1 2021 Evidence: 18,462 IVR payments
Q1 2021 Impact: $1.6 Million through IVR payments
The Impact Is Clear
These three outcomes are just the proverbial tip of the iceberg. A significant percentage of people are making payments by phone for reasons that range from convenience to necessity. And businesses across several industries realize the cost savings and operational efficiencies of automated IVR payments by phone. Contact us to learn more about what kind of impact it can have on your business.