Optimizing IVR and Speech Recognition
In the Age of Smart Phones

2-day hands-on training, $1,795
3 half-day virtual training, $1,795

Update your knowledge of IVR design and implementation with the latest information on touch-tone and speech recognition self-service IVR.

Course Highlights

Learn to:

  • Fully integrate speech recognition and touch-tone
  • Understand user practices and expectations and design every facet of IVR programming
  • Divide your project into phases for quick turnaround and lower risk
  • Design a customer-focused IVR that really works
  • Manage your Voice response test team and test procedures
  • Mix simple IVR menus with natural language and directed dialogues for maximum coverage and minimum errors
  • Create early demonstrations for testing and evaluation
  • Benchmark your existing touch-tone or speech recognition capabilities against competitors
  • Migrate to speech recognition when needed
  • Understand current views on social media and IVR


This course provides practical hands-on guidance for designing the best customer-focused Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system for your business. You will learn scientifically-proven techniques that increase throughput and IVR containment while reducing errors.

The delivery is hands-on and highly participative. You will learn specific and detailed techniques through numerous examples, case studies, research studies and get a chance to evaluate your current IVR's quality. The course has been updated recently to reflect the latest trends and research.

You will learn how to:

  • Use specialized IVR terms and abbreviations
  • Design a customer-focused IVR
  • Apply principles from human psychology
  • Structure menus that are easy to navigate
  • Use natural language that helps
  • Evaluate current IVR's quality
  • Create scripts that communicate your brand and make sense to the customer
  • Migrate to speech recognition (if that is appropriate for your application)
  • Implement your design successfully with thorough planning and testing
  • Make the IVR business case

Who Should Participate

Business Analysts, IVR Specialists, and Software Developers responsible for IVR and customer contact applications will benefit from this course. Both technical and non-technical attendees are welcome.


Chapter 1 - Introduction

  • Introductions and overview of the course
  • Class goals and learning objectives
  • Introduction to the case study used throughout the class

Chapter 2 - A Business View of IVR and Self-Service

  • Why telephone self-service is not going away
  • How to squeeze more cost savings out of the systems you have
  • Improving customer satisfaction with self-service (Yes!)
  • Why, how, and when you need speech recognition
  • Natural Language
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Siri, Alexa, Chat

Chapter 3 - Small Design Changes That Affect Big Improvements

  • Assessing the actual current condition of your IVR
  • Quick changes that will provide the maximum improvement at the minimum cost
  • Small, low-risk, easy steps you can take to migrate from where your self-service capabilities are now to where you want them to be
  • Effective ways to communicate improvement and migration plans to management, the development team, and testers
  • Streamlining functions that receive the greatest use
    • Determine which IVR functions are the "Heavy Hitters" serving the majority of your callers
    • How to streamline heavy-hitter IVR functions for speed and accuracy
  • What to do with the outlier functions
  • Single and Multi-factor Authentication

Hand-on Lab: Developing an IVR Migration Path

In-class Working Session: Why Do People Call the IVR?

Chapter 4- High-Level Design Decisions and Choices

  • Getting the "Big Picture" right
  • High-level mistakes to avoid that could cost you down the road

Hands-on Lab: Creating the High-Level Call Flow

Chapter 5- Human Factors, Ergonomics, & Usability Made Simple

  • The reasons callers hate IVR
  • Why speech recognition fails to gain any real traction
  • Why you should or should not to use avatars, personalities, male vs. female, and branding
  • How to create meaningful and relevant test cases

Chapter 6- Dialogue Design, Menu Design and Scripting

  • The differences between "open" and "closed" dialogues
  • What you need to know about "natural language"
  • How to fall back on touch tone when your SLM doesn't work
  • Best practices for touch-tone menu design
  • How to design speech menus without sacrificing the touch-tone interface
  • The best balance between menu breadth and depth
  • Simple guidelines for writing menu prompts
  • Common pitfalls to avoid in menu scripting

Hands-on Lab: Open Dialogue Designs ("How may I help you?")

In-class Working Session: Organizing Your Menus

Chapter 7 - Handling Error Recovery

  • Touch-tone error recovery techniques
    • What to do when users don't interact at all
    • Standard keys for menus, navigation, and skipping backward or forward
    • How to handle pound sign errors
    • Special keying issues that affect mobile phone users
  • Error Free Design
  • Speech recognition error recovery techniques
  • False acceptance and false rejection errors
  • Dealing with ambiguous conditions
  • How to handle anger and other emotions
  • Chatbots and Alexa

 No travel budget?  No problem. We'll pay your airfare. Click here.

Dates, Locations and Registration

Learn From the Industry's Leading Authorities
Recommended Follow-on Courses:
Call Center Manager Certification

Call Center Engineering 5-day Boot Camp

Contact Center Workforce Management Certification Boot Camp

Training & Certification:
  » Call Center
  » IT Support Center
  » ITIL
  » Help Desk

  » Telecom

Call Center Operations
Technical Support
Call Center Technology
Online Support
Customer Satisfaction
Knock Your Socks Off
Help Desk Institute
Telecom Books
Communication Skills
Call Center Monitoring
Metrics / Benchmarking
Hiring & Retention
Outbound Telesales
Novelty Gifts & Humor

About Us
Contact Us

Registration Fees

The per student registration fee for this seminar is $1795 (plus applicable VAT/GST for international locations), and includes:

  • Comprehensive course manual

  • Handouts with exercises and answers

  • Certificate of Completion.

Class begins at 9:00AM and ends at 5PM on the first day and runs 8:30AM to 3:00PM on the second day. Please arrive at 8:30 the first day to sign-in and meet fellow attendees.

Virtual training is delivered interactively by an experienced conversational design practitioner. Students attend three half-day online sessions via Microsoft Teams ™. The training is delivered in small groups and is fully participatory involving group and individual exercises, group discussion, and opportunities to have our practitioner trainers critique your own conversational solutions

Register securely online with confidence or please call (708) 246-0320.

Seminar Schedule
Mar 24-26, 2021 8:30-12:30 ET Virtual Classroom

For more training course options, see the entire Contact Center Training Calendar of dates and locations.

For more IT, technical and field support training course options, see the Help Desk, ITIL, and Support Center Calendar.

Seminar provider is not responsible for losses due to cancellation. In all circumstances, seminar provider's liability shall be limited to fees received.

Seminar agenda and assigned instructors are subject to change.

Public Training Terms & Conditions

Payment is due prior to the seminar.

Public seminar cancellation policy.  Registrants may cancel up to fourteen days in advance of the seminar start date for a full refund.  Cancellations within fourteen days of the seminar start date will be subject to an administrative fee of $300.  Registrations may be transferred to another member of your organization at no additional charge.  As seminars can be cancelled for under-enrollment from time to time, we strongly recommend that registrants traveling by air purchase only refundable tickets.

In the unlikely event that a seminar must be cancelled by seminar provider due to unavoidable circumstances, you will be notified at least two weeks prior to the seminar date, and your payment will be refunded.  Seminar provider is not responsible for losses due to cancellation including losses on advanced purchase airfares.  We strongly recommend that attendees traveling by air to attend the seminar purchase only refundable tickets.
Become a certified callcenter manager