Feedback on new Phone IVR menu

Hi Onto Community,

We are looking to implement a new IVR menu in the next couple of weeks and I’d really appreciate your feedback.

Let me say this first. NO ONE likes IVR’s (Interactive Voice Response). I know I don’t but until we can proactively recognise customers calling us, predict why you are calling and route them to the right agent with the right skills, training and permissions to resolve your call the first time, it’s a necessary evil.

We have tried to simplify the menu options and make it more intuitive to select the most frequent reasons for your contact. What do you think? Does it make sense? Can we make the wording better to make it clearer? We’d really appreciate suggestions on the new IVR (constructive please :slight_smile: )

Why are we asking? Firstly because we value your feedback and secondly we are working on the design and implementation of a new state of the art new CS system (coming this summer). This will help us resolve contacts on first contact.

Our goal is no more of ‘we will get back to you’, if our CS agent can’t solve your contact we will transfer you to the team that can and only in the most complicated situations will we need to get back to you. You will hear more about this mid to end of June. Watch this space.

Thanks in advance. Look forward to your feedback.

p.s. Something we haven’t shouted about (yet) is Onto CS are now 24x7 (so not just out of hours support for breakdowns/accidents/tyres/glass). We have Onto CS agents who can deal with the majority of your general queries between 2000-0800 on Phone/Chat and Email. Give it a try and let us know what you think.


My immediate thought just based on the flowchart is that new customers and existing customers should be filtered from the off, and all the potential existing customer issues should be under the next layer. I wouldn’t have new customers having to listen to all those options, many of which are, in effect, negative issues. For example, I would not have it so that if a new customer calls you and for whatever reason doesn’t press 1 immediately , the 20th word they hear is “vandalism”. Everything new customers hear should be positive.

So, thanks for calling Onto > if you are an existing customer please press 1, otherwise please hold on while we connect you to a member of our team.

Then, if they’ve pressed 1, at that point hit them with all the other options, and, importantly, have a route back to the top level in case they were a new customer that misheard and pressed 1 in error.

As an aside, just fundamentally, everything is “customer service” in the eyes of the customer.


First, of course, welcoming improvements, always.

Really appreciating the decision of you to go 24/7 too. It’s a must for the scale you’ve now achieved.

And, of course, as always, the fact that you’re prepared to consult rather than just dictate shows an important side to the company’s philosophy. Also appreciated.

:thinking: Next, my first thought accords with @BillN in that anyone enquiring “new” needs to go off down one route.

Then, for us existing mob, surely the logic is:

“Is it about your account or is it about your car?” :man_shrugging:

Then you can subdivide all the things I might want to do about the car

I know there’s then an obvious “er hang on, if I’m calling about mileage is that “car” or “account”…. etc…” but the user cannot be expected to be highly atuned to your systems, and then that’s where there might be some internal shuffling…

Just my initial thoughts, FWIW. :grinning:

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@BillN @K12Beano thanks for the feedback. We will take it onboard and give the opening options as

Press 1 for account related queries
Press 2 for car related queries (we will think a bit deeper about if that is a clear enough difference)

We will move Deliveries and collections from Option 1 under Option 2 (car related queries).

This is a small part of what we are working on right now so watch this space over the next couple of months for more on how we will improve resolving issues on your first contact.

Thanks for the feedback.


Hi all, thanks again for your feedback. We’ve discussed and come up with a new recommendation. Appreciate that its still lots of options, as we introduce our new CS technology it will reduce but for now it will be necessary.



Probably makes sense for new customers to be the first option you get when you get into the account queries menu rather than the third. Get them straight where they need to be without having to listen to any of the other prompts.

Other than that it looks good to me.


Only comment I have is some people will not select any of the options and just ‘hang’ till someone picks them up. That person/s needs to be multi skilled to either deal with the issue directly and if not be capable of asking enough questions to ascertain who to put them through to within the Onto.

And a not from my recent experiences with Thames water, when someone put me through to another ‘team’ it rang forever and even got defaulted back to where I already was. I had to get the direct number and try again the next day. The bit I liked (not) was the smart metering team direct telephone number isn’t even quoted anywhere on the Thames website. :man_facepalming:

If I were a new customer, I think I’d be confused by those two options. Think it’d be best to separate out new customers from the off, ideally.

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You could potentially add “If you’re a new customer, or have an account query not related to your current car” to this 1/2 fork here; but personally in the second step, I’d bring #3 up to #1 so that if you’re a new customer and want to sign up, you push 1, 1 and you’re through.

Edit: to be clear I was relating to this flow:

Thanks @Koda understand the rationale and in previous versions of the IVR we had a new customer option on the top level but to simplify we removed. The reason we have the sub IVR menu options ranked in this way is based on frequency of contact (i.e best practice is to put the largest reasons first). The good news is we can change the IVR structure dynamically and experiment on what works best for all our customers.


@burnt_crisps2 We have this ‘no selection’ option covered and it will default to an Onto CS agent (multi skilled). There will be no delay in answer once the call has defaulted to this route.


@Adam_at_Onto I had the pleasure of using the inbound ‘phone system today. It made me think about its use.

I didn’t, in any way have a “bad” experience.

(As a slight aside, I was prompted to ring in because Driverline rang me. It went to my voicemail. The message, paraphrasing, was to ring back. I rang back the number I had been called from. This was just a pre-recoded message saying (paraphrasing again) “oh hi, we called you, but don’t worry, we’ll call you back…” - that’s all well and and good, but :face_with_raised_eyebrow::thinking: what does one do? A human says “please call back” a system says “don’t worry, we’ll call you back” - as a curious primate, I, of course, ignored the system and called… not knowing who I was supposed to be calling back :joy:)

Anyway - I did eventually speak to the right kind of Driverline human and all is happy in the world.

But, it has since had me thinking (and my Behavioural Science Curious Mind clicked in).

Onto are a digital company. And presumably keen on AI

Are there not systems out there which can start with “Hi, thank you for calling onto, we value your call. Would you like to say, in a few words, what you are calling about… [pause] or hold and listen to our menu options”.

That’s my question. Can you trailblaze into AI assisting, at least partly, to steer inbound calls.

Or even “if you’re unsure who to speak to, and it is convenient TO YOU, state your name, no, Onto reg and nature of your enquiry …AND WE WILL CALL YOU BACK”

Load of random thoughts there. But there’s nothing like “doing” to trigger some thought processes. Others will have better ideas. :brain:

Nooooooo please don’t! “Please tell us what you’re calling about today in a few simple words” - “Recent Invoice” - “We understand you want to talk about a rabid Iguana, is that correct?”


Yeah, I hate these speech recognition systems. Especially when you have an accent that’s as messed up as mine computers haven’t got a clue what I’m saying and it requires 20 failed attempts, lots of profanity, a mental breakdown and repeated begging to speak to a human being before it actually takes pity on me and does what I asked.

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Interesting comments above, but have to say the ones I have used have been perfect, but maybe that’s my voice, tone and slow speech to ensure it gets it right. Selecting options yourself is preferable for everyone I think.


Hi All, thanks again for your feedback on the IVR. We launched our new CS system (phase 1 Phone/Chats) last night at 2100 with the new IVR (based on your feedback). We will monitor over the next couple of weeks and tweak based on customer usage.

I’ll send the community another update soon on phase two - email / new case management system.

Thanks for your support in ‘making it better’.