Smiles on Hold: How Intelligent Customer Routing Turns Wait into Wow!

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1 Smiles on Hold: How Intelligent Customer Routing Turns Wait into Wow! Table of Contents Section 1: Intelligent Customer Routing and the Excellent Customer Experience... 2 Section 2: Intelligent Customer Routing and Return on Investment... 4 Section 3: Money-saving benefits and exceptional customer experiences... 5 Section 4: Making it Work... 6 Section 5: Rethinking Routing... 7 Learn More... 7 Grappling with higher costs and lower budgets in delivering service? Don t sacrifice your customers for lower costs. Instead, how about enjoying lower costs, high satisfaction, and new revenue streams? Avaya s Intelligent Customer Routing solution is where money saving, money making, and excellent customer experiences happen. Most people believe that increasing customer satisfaction and decreasing the cost of customer service are mutually exclusive concepts. But what you ll soon discover is that you can lower costs, increase ROI and improve relationships with your prospects and customers. The strategic use of Avaya s Intelligent Customer Routing (ICR) solution enables you to accomplish both business objectives. Don t let the word routing confuse you. ICR is not just about routing, it s about enabling superior customer experiences as delivered by intelligent technologies. It s about letting you create a customer service strategy to exceed customer expectations by leveraging unified self service and assisted service in the most effective manner. Even in an economic downturn, delivering an outstanding customer experience remains a key area of importance for organizations of all types. Forrester Report, 1/9/09 Theoretically, you could achieve this with conventional technology and maybe some outsourcing. Or, you could try to custom-design it into your current WHITE PAPER 1

2 applications or systems. But the costs of either approach would likely outweigh the benefits. New technologies are enabling dramatic shifts in efficiency for both customers and companies. Leveraging this solution, you can completely turn around the customer s end-to-end experience. No more static messages or repetitive music. No more press 1 for X, press 2 for Y. With ICR you can turn frustrating into easy, boring into pleasing, and unproductive into productive. How? With a highly interactive customer experience that optimizes the business potential of every call. With ICR you can segment calls based on unique business-logic algorithms that contribute to highly personalized service from start to finish. Such sophisticated segmentation lets you treat every caller in ways that are most relevant to them whether that s offering them a convenient callback, sending them to the perfect expert, asking them relevant questions to speed up the overall transaction, or offering them the ability to do more in automated applications. You can give callers fast, intelligent, and personalized self-service that lets them provide information or get questions answered without an agent. When live assistance is needed, you can send your valuable prospects and customers to an agent, while you offer options to do more while they wait in queue. And, you can make sure they reach the right agent or expert not just the first-available one. Then the call arrives with the information the agent needs. This solves three problems at once. It lets your customers accomplish more in self service, makes your agents more available to higher-value callers, and yields greater efficiency in every transaction. ICR lets you do all this and start saving money immediately. The largest expense categories in your contact center are carrier services, contact management applications, agent staff and agent support resources. ICR savings can come from all of these areas from reducing or eliminating costs associated with site-to-site transfers, to simplification of infrastructure by making the most of technologies such as Session Initiation Protocol (SIP), to smarter use of live agents and enterprise experts. In addition to saving money, you can gain competitive edge and create new revenue streams. Because you truly know your customers and what their buying and behavior patterns have been in the past, you can extend offers and information that pertain to every caller. For example, you can make offers that relate to products and services they already have, present current promotions in ways that are relevant to each caller, or explain the benefits of renewing or extending a current contract. Section 1: Intelligent Customer Routing and the Excellent Customer Experience By leveraging ICR you can offer each and every customer a personal concierge for their service experience. Here are just a few ways ICR lets you create differentiating customer experiences that achieve higher levels of caller satisfaction. Intelligent self service satisfies more callers. Prospects and customers can receive personalized greetings and options before you place them in queue. Let callers know your organization recognizes them and speaks their language. Then let them efficiently address the reason for their call without needing to speak to an agent. For example, you can say something like, I see you have an open order. Would you like to know its delivery status? 2

3 A Case in Point: Lower costs and higher satisfaction In a market where repeat business is essential, one of the world s largest tax service providers was sending at least 60% of their calls to high-cost providers, paying on a per-call basis. By using ICR, they can now handle huge spikes in call volume with lowered costs. And they re increasing caller satisfaction by intelligently taking callers out of the Interactive Voice Response (IVR) to send them to the right agent. ICR lets them provide this exceptional service while driving the majority of calls to completion through automated self service. Their challenges were: Highly seasonal business, with huge spikes in traffic during their busy period up to 3 million calls a day. About 60% of their calls were handled by a cloud-based IVR, charged per call, creating high recurring operational expenses. Remaining calls went to the company s communications system for agents to handle. The value they re now realizing: In-house self service, in front of their ACD, easily handles volume spikes and controls costs. And they pay no cost penalties for servicing more calls via self service (now up to 80% of their calls). Immediately realized substantial ROI by moving a cloud-based IVR on site, thus eliminating associated network costs. Smarter decision making with a new depth of actionable reporting data. Retaining more relationships by empowering callers to get quick answers to the most commonly asked questions via self service, then intelligently sending them to the right agent at the right time whenever that s more helpful. You could serve a customer calling into a local branch with the same level of personalized experience. You can also tailor experiences based on recent product purchases, inquiries, or services requested or performed. Efficient use of hold time lets you truly blend self service and queuing. Some callers need live assistance. Instead of music or generic recorded messages, ICR lets you offer flexible, productive, and engaging ways to interact while callers are waiting for an agent. You might ask them to participate in a survey, collect information that will be helpful to the agent, or offer an opportunity to be notified when a related product is released. Maybe they paid their bill a few days late last month via credit card. You can offer to send SMS payment reminders or bill pay approval, creating a convenience for the customer, further ensuring on-time payment for you, and maybe even reducing paper billing expenses. Ultimately, this interactive queue time can create a perceived shorter on hold experience for the customer, creating higher levels of satisfaction. Intelligent routing gets callers to the right agent or resource with the right information. This is a great way to speed up transaction time and increase the agent s ability to provide excellent customer service and your callers will appreciate not having to repeat information they have already provided. You can achieve all this because your system can have a presence beyond the contact center that extends throughout a worldwide organization. That way, a caller can talk to an expert who is just the right person to serve their needs. Plus, the call can arrive at the agent s or expert s desk with a load of useful information in the SIP header, such as the customer name, account number, and that the customer abandoned an online shopping cart just prior to the call. The sluggish economy has led to a change in strategy in the contact center: the focus has shifted from customer acquisition to customer retention. Gartner Report, 05/09 customers that get their problem solved on the first goround are likely to be happier customers. Gartner Report, 02/09 3

4 ICR hard dollar savings By leveraging SIP in the enterprise, you can Reduce or potentially eliminate take back and transfer fees. Eliminate hardware associated with carrier information feeds. Simplify, because fewer resources are required to support the system. By migrating to SIP services and network, you can Save money on long distance and toll-free numbers. Consolidate trunks. Implement improved disaster recovery and business continuity strategies. By shifting call control to a peered SIP solution, you can Simplify IVR and total solution integration. Reduce network charges due to shorter hold times on self-service ports. Reduce number of ACD port connections. By improving your live agent resource utilization and efficiency, you can Save money on labor costs through improved virtualization in a consolidated Avaya call center environment. Increase deployment of screen pops with SIP-based call and data delivery. Section 2: Intelligent Customer Routing and Return on Investment Escalating costs and diminishing budgets have probably made you put new investments on the back burner, even though they could generate more revenue and increase customer satisfaction. At the same time, you can feel your competition gaining, and you know a sure way to stay ahead is to differentiate your organization through the experiences you provide your prospects and customers whenever they contact you. As we have seen, you can use ICR to achieve higher satisfaction. The good news is that you can do this at a lower cost and discover new ways like these to save money: Reduce call management infrastructure costs, support personnel, and license fees related to excess capacity created. Reduce recurring carrier expenses associated with transferring and connecting calls. Stop wasting money by consuming outsourcer contracts to the full extent of your commitments. With ICR, cost savings like these are often immediate and can add up to millions of dollars a year. But you can also use ICR to make money: Offer flexible, data-driven promotions that are highly relevant to each caller. Up-sell and cross-sell even handle complete transactions all while callers are in queue. Without ripping and replacing hardware, you can leverage your past investments as you evolve toward exciting new architectures and true multimodal communications that combine video, chat, voice, fax, SMS and . ICR requires only evolutionary infrastructure investments. And yet it can let your organization smoothly transition to a revolutionary, next-generation contact center that will be the envy of your competition, the first choice of your customers, and a gold mine for your business. Improve contact center performance with reduced call handle time, reduced call transfer, and improved first call resolution. 4

5 A Case in Point: High ROI and retaining more relationships. A leading global financial services firm had assets of $2.1 trillion and operations in more than 60 countries. Here s how it dramatically reduced costs while increasing agent productivity and personalized service. Their challenges were: High TCO due to complex legacy architecture and proprietary CTI integration. High take back and transfer (TNT) costs. High costs associated with staffing, training, and integration on proprietary application program interfaces (APIs). The simplified solution they chose: An ICR model that integrated with their existing self-service platform. Call context data is now transported via SIP, reducing the need for their proprietary, custom-built CTI integrations. The value they re now realizing: Simplified CTI configuration reduces maintenance time and costs. Support staff can be assigned to other tasks. Dramatically reduced costs from displaced network charges by leveraging ICR to provide native intelligent work distribution based on real-time data. Increased agent productivity by collecting additional customer information during wait time in queue. This convenience is shared with the customer, who has a more efficient and personal experience with the agent, thus deepening the customer s relationship with the organization. Section 3: Money-saving benefits and exceptional customer experiences ICR is not about adding technology; it s about creatively using what you already have to achieve your objectives. Here are some examples of how ICR can help organizations reduce total cost of ownership and enhance customer experiences. Reduce total cost of ownership Optimize environment. Centralize applications and management by centralizing self service and speech systems. An application is created or changed once and deployed across the enterprise. This streamlines workforce resources since fewer people are needed to run this efficient system. Reduce infrastructure and licensing footprint. Using the conventional approach, calls first hit an ACD then are sent to self service. With ICR, calls go directly to a speech-enabled IVR. This reduces infrastructure and licensing needs on the ACD and allows growth by adding ports instead of PBX systems. This approach enables efficiency while allowing room for growth on existing platforms. Enable enterprise connectivity via SIP. Leveraging SIP you can get real time data and look across the enterprise to decide where to send a call depending on available skills and locations. SIP then simply passes the call and data along the enterprise network, eliminating carrier routing and long distance charges. This creates an evolution strategy that continues to leverage existing platforms and technologies. Optimize resources. ICR lets you manage (fully consume) outsourcer costs. One company moved into the ICR model with four different outsourcers. Because they now have a complete view of their enterprise, they can fully exhaust their monthly contracts. For example, if it s the 29th of the month with 20,000 calls left, they can ensure exactly that many calls are routed to the outsourcer. Leveraging SIP for call delivery also eliminates costly take back and transfer (TNT) fees. Cut agent talk time in half with predictive in-queue treatments. You can blend self service with queuing, using queue time to up-sell or cross-sell based on estimated wait time (EWT). With ICR, your system can consider call flow options based on a sophisticated set of business criteria and available EWT, and then execute personalized, advanced wait treatment (AWT) applications. This approach can dramatically increase contact center efficiency: The more productive customers are while they re in queue, the less time they ll take when they re talking to agents. Enhance customer experience Differentiate and personalize each contact. ICR makes the self service experience more effective while lowering costs (as described above) by letting you provide 5

6 flexible and personalized services that are relevant to each caller. For example, offer video self service to customers who have 3G cell phones. These They know me! services can extend to every agent contact, because the more you know about the caller, the more your agent knows about them, too. Make every moment count. Blending queuing and self service lets you provide high levels of personalized interactions and efficiency for your customers. But you can also use it to improve customer convenience. For example, the system can say, I see you have a checking and savings account with us. Did you know we can pair them for overdraft protection? Get callers to the right person (agent or expert). Anticipate or quickly learn what customers are calling about to ensure callers receive faster service and always get to the right resource. The system can consider wait time and segmentation models to route customers or to flow them into meaningful exchanges, such as, Do you want to wait about 15 seconds and talk to the person you spoke with yesterday, or would you rather talk to someone else right now? To ensure higher revenue, the system can re-connect a customer to a branch expert based on past successful interactions, or consider data such as agent sales rates. For example, if a customer calls who has a high purchase history, and recently called about an item but did not purchase it, the system can send them to a high-closing sales person. Legacy IVRs are dinosaurs when it comes to managing customer support. Older, proprietary systems are inflexible, expensive to maintain, and make it difficult to respond quickly to customers. Forrester Report, 04/09 Section 4: Making it Work By the time a call arrives in a traditional contact center, technological constraints have already narrowed the options for routing the call. That s because self service and other resources are tucked away behind communication platforms. No matter how well-intended the search for the shortest queue, the typical result is a convoluted routing process. Callers are transferred back and forth increasing wait times, running up network expenses, and placing unnecessary demands on redundant resources. The ICR model perceives routing in a completely different way. By leveraging the full potential of IP telephony and SIPenabled environments, ICR combines existing technologies to create a new deployment and call management model. With ICR, resources like self service are located in front of the communications platforms in a peered SIP environment, so incoming calls can connect directly to them. This powerful difference lets you create personalized customer service at an unprecedented level. Customers can enjoy dynamic in-queue treatments based on context, customer profile, business rules, existing marketing or sales campaigns, and other strategies. You can use video, speech, and interactive response to make every customer contact a superior experience for your customers and your organization. Self service within this architecture is much more efficient because a call reaches it directly consuming no PBX or ACD resources or agent licenses. If assisted service is required, ICR gets the caller to the right agent. 6

7 ICR HELPS YOU Reduce TCO Optimize resources Optimize environment Reduce recurring AND expenditures Enhance customer experience Differentiate and personalize each contact Ease of interaction and efficient use of callers time Get caller to the right person (agent or expert) And wherever ICR routes that call, it delivers the data related to the call as SIP Call Context Information (CCI) ensuring superior customer convenience and unparalleled analytics. Start from where you are and build into the future Securely grounded within the systems you already have, Intelligent Customer Routing from Avaya lets you smoothly evolve into and through the customer experience revolution ahead. You can start heading into the future today while using your existing telephony software and end points, applications, agent selection and routing configurations even the same reporting modules. With new open standard technologies you can go well beyond IVR in self service. You can rely on a more agile and adaptable framework that delivers a superior customer experience while dramatically simplifying your infrastructure and the way your applications integrate. For the last five years CRM has focused on adoption of VoiceXML and VoIP to combine voice and data. But now You can interweave the latest contact center applications including Intelligent Customer Routing, multi-media/ multi-modal channels (such as video, chat, SMS, voice, fax and ), and even Proactive Outreach. You can deploy an intelligent branch solution so overflows can spill over to other branches. Calls on a certain subject can go from a branch to a customer service specialist, or engage enterprise experts beyond the contact center. You can use outsourcers to fully optimize your costs and expenditures using them only when they re needed, and making sure you fully utilize your monthly minimums. That way you re not using your in-house agents while paying fees for unused outsourcer contracts. You can efficiently combine self service with queuing to deliver personalized content or intelligent self service while callers are on hold. Callers will perceive a shorter time in queue, feel more productive, and feel good about doing business with you all of which enhances customer loyalty. You can kick off every call with intelligent treatment so you can accurately identify customer needs, allow customers to self-serve whenever possible, and provide intelligent call treatment options all before transferring those who require live assisted service. Section 5: Rethinking Routing You now know that increasing customer satisfaction and decreasing the cost of customer service are not mutually exclusive concepts. You know how Avaya s Intelligent Customer Routing (ICR) solution lets you rethink the way you handle your customers end-to-end experience. And that by combining the concepts of queuing and customer service you can lower costs, increase ROI and improve relationships with your prospects and customers. Learn More For more information on how to turn wait into wow! with ICR, contact your Avaya Client Executive or Authorized Avaya BusinessPartner, or visit us at 7

8 About Avaya Avaya is a global leader in enterprise communications systems. The company provides unified communications, contact centers, and related services directly and through its channel partners to leading businesses and organizations around the world. Enterprises of all sizes depend on Avaya for state-of-the-art communications that improve efficiency, collaboration, customer service and competitiveness. For more information please visit Avaya Inc. All Rights Reserved. Avaya and the Avaya Logo are trademarks of Avaya Inc. and may be registered in certain jurisdictions. All trademarks identified by, TM or SM are registered marks, trademarks, and service marks, respectively, of Avaya Inc All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. 09/09 GCC4345 avaya.com

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