Western & Southern Financial Reduces Operational Costs with Interactive Intelligence Communications Software

Western & Southern Financial Group has reported reduced costs as a result of deploying the all-in-one IP communications software suite from Interactive Intelligence.

Western & Southern, a financial services company that provides life insurance, retirement planning, and investment products, has deployed the Interactive Intelligence Customer Interaction Center (CIC) software suite to support its 5,000 employees located at 185 offices throughout the United States, including 180 sales offices.

“Based on the many benefits of our initial CIC deployment, we’ve expanded its use company-wide,” said Western & Southern’s manager of communication services, Tom Frenette. “In our call center alone, deploying CIC’s interactive voice response application enabled us to update recording options in-house, which saved us $70,000 in third-party fees.

With its additional applications, CIC has also helped Western & Southern improve customer service.

“CIC’s remote office support has given us business continuity and ensured that we no longer lose calls,” Frenette said. “By enabling distributed employees to share voice mails, faxes and call recordings across the network, CIC has also enhanced collaboration, thus further improving our service.”

In addition, Western & Southern has reported improved employee training as a result of deploying CIC.

“CIC has given us the most flexible and feature-rich communications solution for training and managing our 2,600 sales agents located across 180 offices,” Frenette said. “And because all employees now use a single communications system across sites, we can more effectively track, record and manage sales leads, thus further improving our bottom line.”

Western & Southern first deployed CIC at its rapidly growing customer relations center in Cincinnati. The company then expanded its deployment to several of its subsidiaries’ offices. This year it deployed the system for its sales offices.

“Before our recent expansion of CIC, our remote offices were using a Panasonic key system, along with thousands of POTS (plain old telephone service) lines that were costing us approximately a million dollars a year to maintain,” Frenette said.

In addition to contact center automation features such as interactive voice response and automatic call distribution, Western & Southern uses CIC for presence, quality monitoring and scoring, outbound and blended dialing, and Web self-service and e-mail auto response.

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