This article originally appeared in the August 2011 issue of Customer Interaction Solutions
Analytics is one of the hottest subjects in enterprises and contact centers. That is because they turn data and interactions into meaningful and actionable intelligence.
Customer Interaction Solutions magazine recently interviewed experts from a wide array of leading firms in the analytics space to get their insights and analysis of contact center issues and needs and how analytics solutions can assist centers in meeting them. They report for example that operational efficiencies, sales and cross-multichannel engagement needs are driving analytics demand. The comprehensive in-depth interviews appear online at (insert URL).
A strong indication of what analytics can provide for contact centers can be found in these highlighted answers from these professionals to the following question: What new and enhanced analytics solutions have been developed in response to contact center needs and requirements?
The replies are below as well as in the online article:
Tom Goodmanson, president and CEO
We have been focusing on easier, more intuitive delivery of the information generated by our analytics products. We have created new personalized dashboards with intuitive navigation – where the user is just a click or two away from any task or application – and a consistent look and feel for all components. These factors are designed to improve user satisfaction, eliminate time wasted moving from application to application and dramatically reduce training time. Analytics can sing to operational efficiency needs, especially when paired up with a full-featured WFO solution. Together they can provide opportunities to reduce headcount, such as training agents who have been transferring calls they could not handle to other agents, which adds to call volume.
Marco Pacelli, CEO
Cross-channel analysis delivers a picture of the entire, end-to-end experience to reveal where and how customers are interacting with multiple channels and where they encounter issues that drive more calls into the contact center and other channels. By delivering this insight and measuring the impact of these interactions on operations costs, customer satisfaction, churn and profitability, more organizations can finally begin to deliver personalized, efficient experiences to the right customers in the right channel at the right time. There are several companies who can perform some multi-channel analysis. ClickFox, we believe, is the only solution tracking and visualizing the paths of customers as they research, buy, interact, get support, provides feedback and more to reveal the ideal paths for the customer and the business.
Coordinated Systems, Inc. (www.csiworld.com)
Rich Marcia, marketing director
Our road map for our just-released Virtual Observer 4, and in future releases, is to incorporate more aggressive quality optimization features from the agent and customer perspectives. We have completely rewritten our reporting and fine tuned our dashboard presentation to deliver a very clean multi-level summary of live real-time information. We'll be taking advantage of some of the newer development tools to continue bringing enhancements and useful tools for our customer base.
Ed Shepherdson, senior vice president of enterprise solutions
The most relevant advancement in managing the multichannel analytics for contact centers is giving access to many data sources. Coveo Enterprise Search 2.0 allows organizations to have ubiquitous access to disparate data sources (including social media content), containing both structured and unstructured data. It provides this information via flexible, easy to understand dashboards and information mashups that bring highly relevant information to the fingertips of the agents who need access to the information, and to the customers themselves via secure websites.
Other solutions use SQL-styled databases to access data, so all they are doing is joining together data records. In Enterprise Search 2.0 the index is created and constantly updated; these records are turned into knowledge through correlation and consolidation of the data as it is being indexed. This provides access to unified relevant information, not just lists of data you have to sort through.
Joe McFadden, senior director of marketing
Enkata is continuing to see the value of solutions that support visibility into, and improvements in, the end-to-end customer experience. One example is providing a visual, graphical representation of the multi-point end-to-end path experienced by the customer. This path may include web self-service, IVR and multiple phone calls that included call transfers and repeat calls. This visual map supports the need for supervisors to isolate agent behaviors for the purpose of identifying coaching and training topics. The new feature requirement is to combine the data from all channels and provide root cause capabilities to isolate process issues. Working with a solution like our new Customer Experience Analyzer presents the cross channel data in a way that results in shortened time to insights and next best actions and improves the customer experience through process change management and employee performance.
Acquiring and retaining customers (i.e. growing revenue) is essential to everyone right now. Analytics can help. Yet historically mid-sized companies have avoided analytics solutions because they viewed them as too rigid and expensive. Many companies developed their own “home-grown” solutions, which resulted in biased or irrelevant analysis. HyperQuality has innovated ClearMetrix 2.0 to solve the problems of expensive and cumbersome deployments. It eschews inflexible analytics platforms that require companies to change their attributes to fit within the software’s framework, significant lag times in data availability and poor reporting. With ClearMetrix 2.0, customers get a flexible SaaS (News - Alert)-delivered solution that can be tailored to their company, rather than the other way around.
Jeff Schlueter, vice president of marketing and business development
Text-based analytics is becoming popular. Given that speech is still the primary and preferred means of customer communication though, it is imperative that companies search for solutions that can compare the textual results to those found in the audio. A phonetic indexing and search system works best for this. It will allow any new words, phrases or issues uncovered in the text analytics to be compared back to the audio without the need to re-index audio or update a dictionary.
Given the rapidly occurring and changing text-based communications, being able to quickly run them against the audio to determine the relevance and prevalence of the issues is essential. Last year we enhanced Enterprise Speech Intelligence Product Suite and of those components is Nexidia Discover, which provides automated topic and trend identification of both phone and textual interactions.
Companies need to begin viewing customer experience as an aggregate of multiple channels. And that means taking a proactive, intelligence-based approach to delivering comprehensive, relevant, personalized and timely service to foster loyalty, boost business and compete on a global scale. New solutions capture the entire customer journey across all touchpoints. NICE introduced real-time speech analytics to our enterprise offering. The new capability enables organizations to understand customer intent during the interaction with contact center agents, automatically providing the necessary insights and next-best-action recommendations to agents.
Sean Murphy, director of marketing
UTOPY’s Interaction Analytics solutions have always excelled at classifying customer interactions according to the reason for the interaction, the topics that were discussed by the customer during the interaction, and/or any events which occurred during the interaction. UTOPY’s Multichannel Analytics solution enables the same methodology to be applied to the new, increasingly popular communication channels such as social media, chat and e-mail. This enables organizations to analyze the entire customer interaction lifecycle, regardless of the channels used during the interaction. They can discover the interaction reasons, agents, products or processes which are driving performance on contact center Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), thus drastically improving contact center performance.
Daniel Ziv, vice president of customer interaction analytics
Verint recently announced its new Voice of the Customer (VoC) Analytics platform to specifically address the growing multichannel management needs of its customers. It can also collect and mine e-mail, chat and social media – which are mostly text-based now, but could evolve more into voice and video formats. We can then connect the dots by customer to provide a holistic view for our clients. We not only look at what’s happening now, but also at emerging trends across the different channels. Interestingly, one channel can even predict what may happen in another, such as how frustrations with your contact center can then manifest themselves on social media.
Patrick Botz, vice president of marketing
Desktop analytics has emerged as one of the most powerful new forms of analytics. It can follow the agents through their applications as they are communicating with customers. It can also monitor the time it takes to navigate between application screens and fields to help optimize interaction handling processes. Desktop analytics can even identify when agents entered screens or fields with sensitive data and block it to help organizations comply with strict requirements such as PCI or HIPAA. Our new VPI Fact Finder automatically detects screen events and tags them to recorded interactions. This enables automated classification and analysis on key issues, such as first contact resolution, customer churn, call handling pattern differences between employees, holds/transfers frequency associated with order cancellations and individual and team up-sell or cross-sell success.
Edited by Stefania Viscusi