A constant challenge companies face is how to maximize the efficiency of their operations while maintaining compliance with government regulations. For example, how do you handle privacy while simultaneously being able to take advantage of analytics, which could provide better CRM for customers?
Plum Voice, a 14-year-old company with more than 500 customers, is one of the key vendors looking to help in this area. Its new VoiceTrends Call Analytics (News - Alert) solution now includes PCI compliance, meaning companies in industries such as financial and health care will be able to use analytics without compromising sensitive consumer or patient data. Prior to announcements such as this, companies had to forego their ability to analyze customer data because of HIPAA and PCI (News - Alert) regulations.
“It’s a complex balancing act that forces companies to make a tough choice between leveraging data that can help fine-tune the IVR and improve the customer experience, or turn off analytics to secure the data at the risk of alienating customers with a less than ideal IVR,” says Plum Voice CTO Matt Jones. “With this new VoiceTrends solution, companies no longer have to make the choice. We’re able to offer the best of both worlds: the ability to keep customers within the system and, subsequently, lower customer service costs, while still protecting sensitive data.”
The way the system works is, it allows companies to set up specific data points to keep, and the system logs only the information it needs to improve the IVR without logging the corresponding customer data.
I had a chance to learn more about the company via an interview with Scott Wilson, CMO of Plum Voice. Our exchange is below.
Provide examples of how this analytics would work in the real world.
VoiceTrends automatically analyzes all of the key metrics that lead to poor caller experience. Proper measurement is the key to continuous improvement and, therefore, the key to creating iteratively optimized communication applications. Most IVR analytics tools on the market today are not actually designed for IVR but are instead derived from generalized business intelligence platforms that have been white-labeled and reconfigured. As such, they require IVR applications to adapt to the analytics tool, as opposed to the other way around. IVR developers must learn to manually set parameters, identify and log pertinent information, keep up to date on disparate IVR and analytics APIs, and maintain extra code or configurations. The IVR expert must also become an analytics expert to gather all valuable information and make headway.
VoiceTrends logs the pertinent information and populates ready-to-go reports to reveal useful insights. Business users can easily deduce how to make their voice and messaging applications more efficient and more accepted.
- Failure Analysis – Identifies where callers are hanging up frequently or transferring
- Trend Tracking – Logs which menu options are selected most often and in what order
- A/B Comparison – Compares data from A/B script tests
- Speech Rec Optimization – Logs speech recognition attempts and identifies spots that need grammar improvements
- DTMF (touch tone) event tracking – Tracks choices for each menu and data input/output.
- Sensitive data mode – When VoiceTrends is set to private mode, the platform takes into consideration the source of the data it is about to log and automatically masks any data originating from a sensitive source
This provides the best of both worlds – masking sensitive data while still allowing the analytics platform to track all of the details required for performance analysis.
What is key when trying to improve CRM via an IVR?
Personalization. Leveraging CRM customer data can improve the self-service caller experience through personalization. Offering menu options based on customer type and preference as well as using empirical data helps businesses offer the right information to the right customer, on-demand through their IVR system. When customers need to transfer to an agent to handle more complex issues, CRM data can help connect callers to agents who have dealt with past issues well.
What’s next for Plum Voice?
Plum will continue to improve its cloud communications platform with new offerings that make developing and measuring the effectiveness of IVR applications easer. Plum's revenue grew 46 percent in 2013, and we have similar growth projections for 2014 with a primary focus on health care, financial services, and BPO verticals.
Edited by Stefania Viscusi