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The 2013 Implementation Awards

By The Editors of Speech Technology - Posted Aug 12, 2013
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Customer: Bluegreen Vacations
Vendor: CallMiner
Product: CallMiner Eureka Customer Interaction Analytics

Using CallMiner's Eureka Customer Interaction Analytics, Bluegreen Vacations, a timeshare sales, marketing, and resort management company, learned that the maximum handling time for most customer service calls should be between seven and nine minutes. When calls go past the nine-minute mark, customer frustration sets in.

"We were able to correlate talk and handle time with customer satisfaction and frustration levels," says Kimberly Henderson, director of profit optimization at Bluegreen Vacations, based in Boca Raton, Fla. "Without CallMiner, we would never have been able to make that determination."

Bluegreen Vacations is turning that information—and so much more data revealed through speech analytics—into action. The company can now determine caller demand and revise staffing to accommodate it. Monthly reports highlight the top reasons for calls, identify repeat callers, and provide a detailed analysis of overall service performance levels, which can then be used to help lower call volume, increase payment collection, and improve first contact resolution and operational efficiency.

The company is also using CallMiner to score agents during interactions. Executives can identify which customers are dissatisfied and why, which agents might need additional training, whether agents are transferring calls too often or putting owners on hold for long periods of time, and which customer issues are taking up most of the agents' time.

CallMiner also helps Bluegreen Vacations make sense of voice-of-the customer feedback on sales and marketing programs, reservations, resort experiences, and account servicing.

"Before CallMiner, we did not know what was said on calls," Henderson recalls. "We've always recorded our calls, but we couldn't capture, isolate, and measure the interactions. We weren't able to categorize calls by type or get a pulse [on] what kind of feedback or discussions were taking place on the front lines with our customers."

One of the earliest discoveries Bluegreen made was that 60 percent of the more than 5,000 to 6,000 calls the contact center receives per day—roughly 1.2 million calls per year—are related to account issues. The remaining 40 percent are related to booking reservations at the company's 60 resorts across the United States and the Caribbean or the 4,000 other resorts around the world with which Bluegreen has trade agreements. The contact center handles about 1,000 reservations per day from the more than 170,000 full Vacation Club members, who have purchased timeshares, and thousands more who have trial memberships.

Bluegreen now records and tracks 100 percent of its calls, which executives say has given it greater confidence in business decisions because they are based on data from every customer contact, not just a sample of the calls.

CallMiner has also helped Bluegreen Vacations better plan its communications with customers. Through trending reports, it was able to determine that customers typically begin planning their vacations in the spring, so it revised its marketing schedules around that data. "We can target marketing around specific promotions and monitor through CallMiner how effective those campaigns are," Henderson says.

The solution also uncovered a correlation between tax refunds and when customers paid their account balances for the year. Using that information, Bluegreen was able to better tailor its billing, resulting in a 48 percent increase in collections and a 16 percent increase in the sale of points protection reservation cancellation insurance.

Bluegreen Vacations initially installed CallMiner Eureka in September 2010, and two years later added the automated agent scorecard solution. Since then, it has achieved a 26 percent higher customer satisfaction index and a 19 percent higher agent quality index.

CallMiner's analytics have also provided insights that have helped Bluegreen develop new customer-inspired products and services from the suggestions it receives almost daily. One such suggestion, the migration from a paper form to a Web form for many requests, resulted in the elimination of 2,200 hours of processing time. The company also now services customers through email and Web chat.

Bluegreen had considered using speech analytics for almost four years before selecting CallMiner. The overall change has been very dramatic, according to Henderson. "When we initially implemented CallMiner, it took us about a year to get in and figure out what we had," she says. "We went from nothing to all this very quickly."

The results

  • Improved customer satisfaction by 26 percent
  • Saw agent quality jump 19 percent
  • Increased collections by 48 percent
  • Sales of points protection reservation cancellation insurance increased 16 percent

Customer: Wainwright Ryan Eid
Vendor: BigHand
Product: Voice Productivity

Based in Melbourne, Australia, the law firm Wainwright Ryan Eid has developed a broad national and international client base since its founding in the mid-1950s. The company practices in a number of areas, including intellectual property, commercial and business law, building and construction law, dispute resolution, franchising, and property and taxation law.

Wainwright Ryan Eid works with industry associations and institutions, private and public corporations, and global private clients in Australia and the United States, Middle East, and Europe. The law firm advises clients about international trade and commerce law, including importing and exporting, mergers and acquisitions, completing due diligence, risk management, negotiating and drafting contracts, and the sale, acquisition, and financing of shares and land.

With such an extensive worldwide client base, the company is always seeking operational improvements, including those in its transcription system. Wainwright Ryan Eid's analog tape dictation system, which it used for many years, was hampering its potential for growth, translating into increased costs and declining productivity. For example, in spite of many hours of transcriptionist work, the firm still experienced document backlogs of up to two weeks.

To combat the problem, Wainwright Ryan Eid turned to BigHand, and in September 2012, began deploying BigHand's Enterprise edition Voice Productivity solution. The technology, which was specifically created for law firms, automatically records, edits, and transfers digital dictations and voice files that can be shared with employees company-wide.

"At a time when the Australian economy is slow, we recognized that technology had to play an integral part in making sure we remain competitive and continue to provide our clients with a top level of service whilst keeping costs down," explains Troy Edwards, manager of the law firm's BigHand project. "We did look at some standalone speech recognition software, but we quickly came to the conclusion that for it to be adopted and effective firm-wide, we needed advanced development and support."

BigHand's Voice Productivity solution provides two types of speech recognition. The first sends dictation to a server for transcribing; the other is performed on the client side, and allows text to be typed in real time as information is dictated. Employees can convert voice to text and finish documents without ever needing to touch a keyboard. The solution can be used with iPhone and Android, Windows Mobile, and BlackBerry devices.

The technology also enables emails, documents, and file notes to be structured more quickly since they only have to be proofed, and not listened to, typed, and reheard again. The finished transcribed work is placed into the work flow, with proofing work completed by the next available staff member instead of a dedicated secretary, Edwards says.

With the speech recognition solution, the law firm was able to improve work flow by allowing employees to access documents as soon as they are submitted, whether they are generated on-site or from an author's smartphone. Edwards said that the staff previously spent almost 80 percent of their day typing; with the BigHand software, that number has fallen to roughly 65 percent, as authors can file dictations directly into the company's templates. In addition, BigHand's solution has increased document turnaround time by 50 percent.

"[Our assistants] are now able to pick up additional activities, enabling them to contribute to a wider variety of tasks, which in turn improves their motivation, job satisfaction, and ultimately, their productivity," Edwards says.

BigHand's software increased the law firm's first-time accuracy rate from 70 percent to 95 percent in just one week. In addition, the authors' initial profiles were trained by BigHand in as quickly as 30 minutes. The seamless transition enables authors to dictate in a natural fashion, without having to learn the system. As it is used, the solution is constantly recognizing speech patterns, with accuracy improving over time. Wainwright Ryan Eid's backlog, which had stretched into two weeks during peak times, was reduced to nearly zero.

"Minimal impact on workload, combined with efficiency gains and cost reduction, has proved the investment to be a great success," Edwards said in a statement. "We recommend that firms who are seeking new ways to give themselves a boost in a slowing economy look to BigHand to provide them with the technology and tools required to boost efficiency and cut costs. The return on investment is quickly realized, and the results speak for themselves."

The results

  • Decreased document backlog from 14 days to nearly 0
  • Increased first-time accuracy from 70 percent to 95 percent after one week
  • Cut time assistants spent typing per day from 80 percent to roughly 65 percent

Learn more about the companies mentioned in this article in the Speech Technology Buyer's Guide:
Learn more about the companies mentioned in this article in the Vertical Markets Guide: