Call Center Technology – Speech Enabling Your IVR…What’s That? You ‘Say’!

By | January 8, 2016

Now would be the time to resolve to enhance your IVR by implementing Speech Recognition technology.   And, VEXIS has the experience to design a speech enabled IVR to fit your functional needs, as well as your budgetary needs.   VEXIS has on staff one of the most experienced VUI Design Engineers in the industry.   Along with that, the experience of our project teams from Developers to Project Managers to our Quality Assurance Analysts ensures your speech system will be just what you’ve “asked” for and then some!

You’ve probably heard some negativity about speech systems at some point in your technology career.  Yes, they were very rudimentary at the beginning.  Also, maybe the response seemed very robotic and not very friendly.  Well, think back to the Atari games or even earlier than that, the old electronic game with the tanks and ping pong where the flashing ball didn’t even seem to be moving!  Now, we have the Wii, Xbox 360; all kinds of hand held electronic games.  Well, this is similar to the transition of the speech enabled IVR.   Now they are more accurate, more conversational.  Overall, the speech systems of today can be a great source for branding because they portray the “personality” of your Company.  Is your Company’s personality formal or is it casual?  Do you want your Company to reflect a fun personality such as in the gaming industry or a serious personality such as in the financial industry?

By now, you’re thinking, “Yeah, sure, I’ve used those systems and they don’t understand what I say and they never have the option I need. So, if it doesn’t work for me, what would it do for my customers and what would it do for my business?”  That’s where the VEXIS experience comes into play and where tuning your speech system comes into play.  But, we’ve jumped ahead.  Let’s go back to “what would it do for your customers and what would it do for your business.”  When implemented right and tuned properly, your customers will have a positive experience and your business will have a positive impact to the bottom line.   Have we got you thinking about it now?

Next question you’d ask is “Why would I implement a speech system?”  Although there are many, here are a couple reasons for you to consider.

1.  Your DTMF application may be keeping customers in your IVR a bit too long.  This affects customer satisfaction and equates to real dollars to your business.  This is a one-two punch:  1) customer satisfaction impact can cause you to lose customers; 2) keeping customers in your IVR too long causes higher costs per call in hardware and software costs.  Both are real dollars to the bottom line.

2.  You  may be able to expand your automated offerings by going to a speech enabled IVR. An example of this would be a change in personal information such as address, including the street name and city, not just the numeric values! You also could validate customers by having them speak their name or other validation criteria such as Mother’s maiden name. This would decrease “talk time” for your Customer Service Representative (CSR), especially if you used your new CTI application with screen pop with a validation flag to the CSR desktop (See the article in the July issue of the VEXIS Voice, Call Center Technology – So What!?!  Let’s Talk Benefits!  Let’s Talk CTI!)

So, now you’ve decided you want to look into speech enabling your IVR and you and your VEXIS Account team have completed all the pertinent documents such as a Statement of Work. What’s first? First, VEXIS will perform an on-site discovery session. We’ll start with the goals you’d like for your speech system. We’ll look at the current functionality in your IVR and where speech will have a marked improvement over DTMF. We’ll collect and review the feedback you receive from your CSRs, call center supervisors, and customers. Finally, we’ll listen side by side to calls with your CSRs, so that we understand your callers and your business practices from the inside out.

Once we complete the on-site discovery, our experienced team will regroup back at VEXIS and formulate a General Solutions Design (GSD) that will document your speech system and functionality to be delivered. Upon your review and approval of the GSD, VEXIS will document the design in a Detailed Design Document (DDS) and then development is underway! There are many other tasks following the VEXIS project methodology by all team members from document development to application development to testing to deployment.

I would encourage you to call your VEXIS Account Consultant to start the process for your discovery session today! Team up with VEXIS to start the New Year with a solid way to add real dollars to your Company’s bottom line!

Andrea McCasland, Senior Project and Quality Assurance Manager