There are companies out there that make it a goal to never send their customers into an IVR system and to allow them to always speak with a human. Some companies even have benchmarks of how many times a phone will ring before it has to be answered by an actual person. My guess is that these companies don't really incrementally spend that much more on call center operations and that the incremental revenue far outweighs the incremental cost.
I will note that you always seem to get a human when you call to cancel services and generally that human will make you some sort of offer to stay with that company. Here's the other part to this equation: if you can offer me 3 free months after I've been a customer for 3 years, why not just offer it to me before I decide to leave? By the time I get to the human in retentions, I've already fired you as my provider.
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