Are You Annoyed or Aided by Your Conference Call System Prompts?

As we discussed last week in our post about conference call set-up times, we think the time that conference hosts and attendees have to spend getting into a conference should be minimized as much as possible.  One way you might be wasting valuable time is by using a generic prompt system.

Most prompts are less than 10 seconds long, so they seem benign.  But when there are many, this can add up to 1-2 minutes of wasted time per user per call, which equates to hours per month.  Here are some of the standard prompts you might encounter:

  • Initial Welcome
  • Enter Your Code / ID
  • Confirm Your Id
  • Reenter Your ID If Not Recognized
  • If You Are The Subscriber, Press Star
  • Enter Your Subscriber PIN
  • Record Your Name
  • To Start Or Join Your Conference, Press 1
  • Enter Your Audio Pin
  • You Will Now be Placed into Conference
  • Hear Menu Description
  • Enter Security Prompt
  • Name Played Into Call As People Join
  • Count Of People On Call
  • Name Played Into Call As People Leave

When we checked out the various standard prompts for various providers, the time wasted maxed out at 2.3 hours! (Click here or click thumbnail below to view full-size.)

call time prompts

Click the above image for a larger view of the call prompts time chart by provider.

The average for all tested services was 1.65 hours. That’s still way too much time wasted.  The highly optimized Adigo VIP service only took up 0.3 hours per month of all users’ time.

Do people really notice this time drain?  Absolutely.  If you call in regularly, and your provider uses all 15 of these standard prompts for every conference call, while only 2 or 3 really apply to you, wouldn’t you find it annoying to have to go through the rest of them each time you called in?  Most people feel more and more frustrated with each unnecessary prompt.  (This increasing frustration might even negatively affect the outcome of the conference in cases where input or concurrence is desired.)

That frustration is entirely valid!  Every call and every type of user is different, so why not make the prompts individual as well?  In fact, if you have 100 users, you should have close to 100 different combinations of which prompts are turned on for each user.  Optimized conference prompts is a service your provider should offer.  Additionally, each user should be able to turn off the prompts they don’t want.

How do your conference call prompts stack up?  When you minimize the prompts and make them relevant to the individual user, you save them time and unnecessary hassle. Your users will appreciate that.

Why not optimize the prompts for the users and prevent wasting their time and increasing their frustration?  For more information on optimizing your conference calls, download our free best practices ebook:  How to Optimize Conferencing Prompts and Call Flows for Your Company.


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