Speech Analytics Insider Tips You Probably Didn’t Know

When law enforcement recruits officers and trains them but fails to manage them, public confidence goes down while crime goes up.

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The same is true with speech analytics. You may have done your homework in selecting just the right vendor and in following best practices for implementing your new speech tool. But if you haven’t considered how to optimize deployment of your new technology, management will quickly lose confidence in it — and it would be a crime to waste all that potential.

These insider tips will help you police your speech initiative and allow you to protect your investment while serving key stakeholders.

Develop a speech analytics subject-matter expert.

Many organizations now understand speech analytics isn’t a plug-and-play solution like other contact center technologies. Still, many businesses fail to designate the right individual to manage the technology once the deal is inked.

Contact centers often assign this task to someone in operations, typically on the telephony side, but this person doesn’t need to be tech savvy. More important is a desire to be solutions-driven and business-curious. Why? He or she is likely to answer to a wide range of internal customers.

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Create a “closed loop” feedback system.

It’s imperative the anointed subject matter expert doesn’t exist in a vacuum. Optimize impact and ROI of your speech tool by disseminating the actionable data it produces to key stakeholders throughout the organization.

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Employ “change agents” who are receptive to new ideas.

Any organization considering a speech initiative needs to ensure it’s open to change and that change agents — people with the responsibility and enthusiasm to do what needs to be done, regardless of where it takes them — are strategically in place.

That’s why the choice of whether to implement customer contact analytics shouldn’t be left to the IT department, or business users, except in clearly defined cases of QA automation or compliance monitoring. Without executive-level engagement, your speech initiative may be unduly vulnerable.

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Be ready to go.

Data not acted upon is worthless, regardless of how rich and revealing it may be. If the organization isn’t willing or able to act upon insights produced by speech analytics, there’s no point in buying it.

Don’t clutter your speech library.

The best advice for new speech users can be distilled to one word: discernment.

Before investing time, money and other precious resources in deploying your new speech tool, weigh the potential value of each bit of knowledge you hope to discover.

Analyzing every call to ensure agents use proper language sounds good in theory. Too often, however, speech users expend energy analyzing elements that won’t yield commensurate value.

Setting precise objectives that promise to yield high-value business intelligence is like looking for $10 bills instead of pennies. You can certainly use your speech tool to find an unending supply of pennies, but it’s not a productive use of your time or the tool’s capabilities.

Besides, generating a large amount of data will only be useful if you have the extensive resources to review, interpret and analyze it all. The more you can narrow your focus, the more valuable the results.

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Hear the authentic voice of the customer.

If you forge ahead on a speech analytics project without listening to random recordings from the appropriate business queue, you significantly lower your odds of producing useful business intelligence.

Guessing about “the voice of the customer” is not a suitable substitute for actually hearing it. Listening to hundreds of actual calls from start to finish may tedious, but it’s the best way to identify meaningful key words and phrases that determine customer intent and predict outcomes.

Consider a credit union that had just deployed speech analytics, whose marketing director was disappointed to learn few members brought up the loyalty program he’d recently launched. After some investigating, he found customers were indeed mentioning the program with great frequency. It’s just that they largely ignored the official package names incorporated within his speech library and instead were asked about “perk points.” It’s a good example of the gap that can exist between expected and actual customer language, which can best be revealed when operations and marketing departments cooperate and listen to actual calls.

The quality of your speech library will make or break your speech analytics initiative. It’s vital you build a customized one and then apply sophisticated methodologies to continually fine-tune search results until you reach a sweet spot of accuracy aligned with your business objectives.

Keep an open mind.

Purchasing a speech tool is like hiring someone to remodel your house only to discover he can also repair your automobile, prepare your taxes and whip up gourmet dinners for your family. Once you start using speech analytics, you’ll find new ways to leverage it and solve business challenges you hadn’t thought possible.

Closing Thoughts

Savvy speech users discover learning never ends and benefits keep accruing. The more familiar you become with the features and functions, the better you leverage both the art and the science of speech analytics to deliver actionable — and ongoing — business intelligence.

About MainTrax
MainTrax is a leading provider of speech analytics professional services to end users and industry partners. Free of allegiance to any one solution or supplier, MainTrax has earned a reputation as an independent, unbiased resource for consulting expertise across a variety of products and providers.