How Call Deflection Can Help Enterprises Deliver Better Customer Experience

  • 6 min read
How Call Deflection Can Help Enterprises Deliver Better Customer Experience

Did you know that according to IBM’s report, the AI agents can handle 81% of frequently asked questions without human interaction?

Are you dreading long call queues? Call deflection can be the solution. It is a strategy that redirects customers to self-service options or faster communication channels, freeing your agents for complex issues. 

The goal of call deflection is not to avoid customer interaction but rather to provide faster and more efficient resolutions to common inquiries, leaving call centre agents available to handle more complex issues.

Call deflection strategies offer significant benefits, including improving the customer experience by providing a swift response, personalized solutions, and cost-efficiency by decreasing the dependence on exclusively agent-handled calls.

Call deflection also creates a searchable knowledge base to gather all the common queries to offer 24*7 customer services and self-service adoption. Finally, it optimizes agent productivity. Call deflection or encrypted calls allow them to dedicate their expertise to more complex customer issues requiring in-depth support.

The evolution of customer service: Why call deflection matters

Customer service has undergone a shift from solely phone-based interactions. Call deflection, a strategy to reduce reliance on call deflection centers is crucial in this evolution. By offering self-service options like FAQs, chatbots, and knowledge bases, companies empower customers to find solutions independently. 

This reduces wait times, frees up agents for complex issues, and caters to customer preferences for quicker, digital resolutions. Ultimately, call deflection fosters a more efficient and satisfying customer service experience for businesses and their clientele.

The mechanics of call deflection: Strategies and technologies

To improve customer service efficiency, companies are increasingly turning to call deflection. This strategy strategically redirects customer inquiries from traditional phone support to digital channels. Let’s break down the core strategies and technologies driving effective call deflection.

Core strategies

  • Intelligent Call Routing with IVR: Interactive Voice Response (IVR) is your frontline defence. Design menus that address common issues.
  • Use predictive IVR: Analyse caller data (location, previous interactions) to offer personalized options.
  • Let callers switch to other channels: Include options for “Get help via chat” or “Receive a help article via text.”


  • Call Center Software with Integrated Deflection: Many modern platforms offer IVR and encrypted cell phone service setup, skill-based routing, and deflection capabilities for directing calls to the best channel.
  • Knowledge Base Software: Dedicated platforms for creating searchable knowledge bases, often with AI-powered recommendations to surface the most relevant content.
  • Chatbot Builders: Choose between simpler rule-based platforms and more advanced NLP-powered solutions depending on your needs.
  • Messaging Platforms: Integrate with popular messaging apps like WhatsApp Business API, Facebook Messenger, or SMS to reach customers on their preferred channels.
  • Data Analytics: Track interaction patterns, the success rate of self-service channels, and overall deflection metrics to continuously optimize your strategy.

Know more about Automatic Call Distribution

Benefits beyond the bottom line: How call deflection enhances customer satisfaction

Here’s how call deflection enhances the customer experience:

Empowerment and control

  • Modern customers want autonomy. Call deflect numbers provide tools for them to find solutions on their own without feeling like a company is pushing them aside.
  • Self-service, encrypted phone call apps, and chatbots eliminate the frustration of waiting for service within business hours. Customers get help whenever it’s convenient for them.

Speed and convenience

  • Callers who do need to speak to an agent often experience significantly shorter wait times when simple issues are deflected to other channels.
  • Knowledge bases and chatbots provide instant answers to FAQs, bypassing the need for lengthy phone explanations.
  • Channels like email and text allow customers to start an inquiry and get a response when it suits their schedule.

Preference and Personalization

  • Customers can choose how to interact – secure phone calls, self-service, chat – matching their preferences and issue complexity.
  • A well-integrated system keeps customer information consistent across channels, so they don’t have to re-explain their problem every time the interaction shifts.
  • Chatbots and knowledge bases can use data to tailor recommendations, making self-service more effective.

Overall experience improvement

  • Eliminating long hold times and repeated explanations makes interactions smoother and less frustrating for customers.
  • Providing options and efficient solutions signals that a company values its customers’ time and is investing in their support experience.
  • Encrypted VOIP calls empower customers to proactively troubleshoot, potentially preventing more complex issues from arising in the future.

Case studies: Real-world examples of successful call deflection implementation

Midco (Telecommunications)

The Challenge: Midco was experiencing a high volume of simple support calls, overloading their call centres.

The Solution: They implemented Google’s Business Messages and Apple Business Chat, enabling asynchronous text-based customer interaction and a robust self-service knowledge base for handling common questions and troubleshooting issues.

The Results:

  • 73% increase in call deflection
  • Faster response times for customers who did need live help
  • 20% reduction in click-to-call interactions from 1-800 numbers

Overcoming challenges: Common hurdles in implementing call deflection 

Here are the common hurdles businesses face and how to address them:

  • Customer resistance: Some customers, especially older demographics, may remain insistent on resolving issues solely through phone calls.
  • Inadequate self-service resources: Poorly organized knowledge bases, outdated articles, or a lack of visual guides will lead to frustration and customers reverting to phone support.
  • The fear of losing the human touch: Businesses worry that excessive deflection will become impersonal and alienate customers.
  • Technological limitations: Poorly integrated systems, clunky chatbots, and hard-to-navigate IVRs create friction, not efficiency.
  • Lack of metrics and tracking: Without data, it’s difficult to assess the success of your deflection strategy and pinpoint areas for improvement.

Future trends: Innovations in call deflection and customer experience

Let’s take a look at some exciting future trends poised to shape call deflection and enhance the customer experience even further:

  • Evolution of Chatbots: AI-powered virtual assistants will move beyond basic interactions, becoming increasingly sophisticated in understanding a customer’s unique context and needs.
  • AR-Powered Troubleshooting: Customers will be able to superimpose step-by-step instructions directly onto their physical environment (e.g., for product setup or appliance repair)
  • Blurring Channel Boundaries: Customers will move effortlessly between self-service, chat, voice api, and even in-person support without losing the thread of their issue or having to repeat information.
  • Beyond Problem-Solving: AI will predict potential issues even before customers contact support, triggering proactive notifications or self-help resources to prevent problems altogether.

Conclusion: Leveraging call deflection for enhanced customer engagement

When a company implements call deflection strategically, it can offer a transformative approach to your business. It can benefit your company by enhancing customer satisfaction, improving cost efficiency, and optimizing agent productivity.

Successful call deflection depends on balancing customer needs and operational efficiency. By carefully analyzing call data, offering a range of self-service and alternative communication options, and continuously measuring results, organizations position themselves to deliver exceptional customer experiences.

Contact Airtel Cloud Telephony  to assess the potential of call deflection strategies to embark on a journey towards a more efficient and customer-centric support model.

Airtel Business is India’s leading and most trusted provider of ICT services with a global network across the USA, Europe, Africa, Middle East, Asia-Pacific, India and SAARC regions. We serve over 1200 global enterprises, 2000 large and 1 million medium/small businesses across India.