Consumers are increasingly used to speech recognition technologies when shopping online, searching for information, or simply managing an online task. Communicating with contact centers is no exception. Voice technology is transforming the way that contact centers manage calls and use their data, turning text into a valuable resource.
What is it?
Speech recognition technology enables applications to identify and analyze spoken language and convert this data into analytics. In practical terms, this means that when customers talk to applications empowered with speech recognition technology, the system analyzes what they say. Based on the input, the system triggers specific actions. A simple example of this is Apple’s Siri or Amazon’s Alexa. Since Alexa is increasingly becoming a regular household appliance, customers are becoming used to such technologies when it comes to carrying out simple tasks, shopping, or accessing information.
Most up to date contact centers quickly recognized the potential of speech recognition when handling customer calls. It can provide better customer experience and it can improve the effectiveness of daily contact center operations.
A simpler identification
According to a recent study, 86% of contact centers identified improved customer experience as the essential benefit of adopting speech recognition technology. This is especially true if we look at the way that it can help the issue of customer identification.
Contact centers often deal with sensitive personal information. Without voice recognition technology this often means that they require customers to memorize identification numbers or passwords in order to authenticate them. With the use of speech recognition technology, customers can be identified based simply on their voices. Each customers’ voice is understood as a unique data point. All customers have to do is to say their name out loud and the system will identify them.
Besides a simplified identification process, additional tasks can be automated by voice recognition technology. Any contact center interaction that asks for specific information in a database can be automated with speech recognition. These types of tasks include checking an account balance, requesting shipping information, or asking for the address of the closest store. Such common interactions can be turned into a self-service task, without a live agent managing the call.
Self-service means that you can keep your clients out of long waiting cues, therefore improving customer satisfaction. Additionally, speech recognition can help reduce your operational costs, by reducing the agent handling time.
Agent support means customer satisfaction
Speech recognition can also help provide useful analytics, such as the reason for a call, along with other key data points on the customer. With this information, you can instantly transfer the caller to the appropriate agent. With effective identification and call handling, you can expect improved customer satisfaction and NPS scores. This also means increased agent satisfaction and reduced costs as you don’t have to waste human resources on assessing and identifying the inbound call.
The advancement of speech recognition technology means that it can also analyze the tone of voice of customers. Knowing how difficult it can get for agents to handle a frustrated customer, this can considerably help their interactions. By analyzing the tone of voice during customer interactions, speech recognition technologies can now provide call center agents with real-time support when dealing with customers. By making real-time suggestions to agents in a call, speech recognition software can detect that the time is ripe to make an upsell or it can warn agents of upset customers about to hang up the call.
Speech recognition technology has come a long way since its first introduction. With customers becoming used to speech-based software, it is no surprise that contact centers are also implementing this technology. Speech recognition can help with easily identifying customers, and it can also allow them to manage self-service tasks. Additionally, this technology can help with providing important data to agents, such as the reason for a call, customer data, and the client’s sentiment. Voice recognition technology is bound to be a cost-effective solution!