You may think of interpretation as a one-way street–an outbound call placed to bridge a language gap. A non-English speaking patient schedules a doctor's appointment and needs an interpreter, so a call is placed. A person who is limited English proficient visits their child's school or a bank, and again, an outbound call is made to find an interpreter.   

But what happens when a non-English speaker needs to call your organization? After all, non-English speakers live in an inbound and outbound world. This role reversal can cause confusion and lead to barriers, impacting the experience for both the caller and the organization.

Imagine calling a company and being greeted with an automated message in a language you don't understand. Frustration sets in, the call gets dropped when you don’t know what selection to make or even how to make it, and your inquiry remains unanswered. This is a common experience for non-English speakers placing inbound calls.

The DirectResponse Solution 

What if there was a better way? 

LanguageLine goes beyond the traditional "Press 1 for English, Oprima 2 para español" approach. We offer a solution called LanguageLine DirectResponse. DirectResponse is designed to improve your inbound experience for non-English speakers by making an interpreter’s voice the first one the caller hears. 

DirectResponse streamlines inbound calls for LEP callers, making communication a breeze. Here's how it frequently works:


  • In-Language Greetings: Callers hear greetings and menu options in their native language, eliminating confusion from the start.
  • Easy Navigation: Pre-recorded instructions guide callers through department selections, ensuring they reach the right person.
  • Seamless Interpreter Connection: Once the department is chosen, the caller is automatically connected to a qualified interpreter who facilitates the conversation. The interpreter’s voice is the first one the caller hears. The interpreter stays on the line throughout the call. 

 Please note that DirectResponse can be customized. Not all configurations involve the use of a phone tree.

DirectResponse is versatile and adaptable, working with any IVR system or toll-free number. This flexibility ensures that organizations of all sizes and industries can provide in-language support to their customers around the clock.

The benefits of DirectResponse include:

  • Improved Customer Experience: LEP callers feel valued and respected when greeted in their own language.
  • Faster Service: This automated process saves valuable time for both callers and your staff.
  • Increased Efficiency: Automated connections and clear navigation minimize wait times and dropped calls.
  • Reduced Stress: Both callers and staff experience a smoother, less stressful interaction.
  • Greater Inclusivity: DirectResponse demonstrates your commitment to serving a diverse clientele.

Real-World Impact: A Pair of Use Cases

One notable success story of implementing DirectResponse comes from Cincinnati Children's Hospital, which aimed to improve the family and patient experience. The hospital needed a seamless system that connected an interpreter to the caller on the front end so they could have an uninterrupted experience while their call was routed from department to department within the organization. DirectResponse enables people to call their health system with an interpreter on the line at the front end of the call.

“DirectResponse is more welcoming for the caller than encountering an operator who doesn’t speak their language,” said Andy Schwieter, Director of Patient Experience at Cincinnati Children’s. “It provides a better experience for the family and for our operators.”

In a separate instance, a diverse school district in South Portland, Maine, was struggling with inbound calls from parents who did not speak English. This was a significant issue in a district where more than 20% of students are English Language Learners.

Enter DirectResponse, which helped eliminate the language barrier for non-English speaking parents. When calling the school, the first voice families hear is a live, professional interpreter in their preferred language. The interpreter remains on the line throughout the call, facilitating clear and efficient communication between the family and school personnel.

The Power of Inbound Interpretation

Don't let language barriers prevent you from connecting with your customers. LanguageLine DirectResponse unlocks a world of possibilities for your inbound calls.

Ready to learn more? Contact LanguageLine today to discuss how inbound on-demand interpreting can improve your organization's communication and inclusivity. Let's create a seamless experience for all your callers, regardless of language.

Still researching what multilingual solutions are right for your organization? We invite you to read about all our on-demand interpreting options

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