We live in a world that relies heavily on auditory communication on a constant basis. While, I can understand that most people prefer phone calls. Not everyone can rely on auditory information, but they can process visual information and use electronic communication. For this reason, this is why it is important to not assume that people do not want to use the phone because they are lazy or ” that’s just a part of being a millennial”.
As a person who is hard of hearing, it can be frustrating to use the phone, although I can manage phones a little better with the help of captioning phones and captioning phone apps.
What is a captioned phone, if you may ask?
Healthy Hearing explains what is a captioned phone is:
“Captioned telephones are special phones that can be used in a home or place of employment and have a built-in screen that displays text captions of the conversation during the call in near-real time. ”–Susanne Jones
These phones are not perfect by any means. Captioned phones can be prone to make errors. Sometimes, the captions lag and captioning mistakes do happen. Not all HOH/Deaf/deaf people use the same telephone tools, as there are many other types of assistive technology tools for them to use when it comes to phone calls. The more notable ones are video relay services, which signing Deaf users use this for communication over the telephone. However, assistive telephone devices are not perfect, but there is a need for alternatives, in case, these devices aren’t enough.
In 2017, organizations and businesses need to move towards to opening all lines of communication preferences. In Svetlana Kouznetsova’s article, A Note to Businesses-Why Voice Phone Calls are a Thing in the Past explained, how it is important for businesses to use email and video communication to reach the D/deaf, HOH, and the hearing populations. Svetlana Kouznetsova’s article also pointed out that Dan Zarrella’s research has shown requiring phone numbers produces lower conversion rates for leads. This shows that the telephone is not enough to reach customers and job seekers, regardless, whether or not the person is deaf or not. Wouldn’t it be better to cover all bases channels of communication?
In conclusion, businesses and organizations are missing a huge opportunity to not open different channels of communication. It is time for business and organizations to think out of the box about communication strategies to reach out to the D/deaf, HOH, and hearing populations.