No One Talks About It But Talking Is Crucial In Customer Engagement

No One Talks About It But Talking Is Crucial In Customer Engagement

Having decent speech tech systems so customers don’t have to go back and forth is make or break for a company, says Brett Feldon of Salmat.

With Australians set to spend more than $43 billion in the pre-Christmas trading period, businesses need to be prepared for incoming enquiries or risk losing customers.

For a customer, making calls to a business – particularly big business – can be tedious and time consuming. There is nothing more frustrating than having to navigate your way through to people who have no clue what you are asking, let alone meet your needs.

It’s a constant issue of customer service – yet no one is talking about one of the most common cause of negative customer engagement; talking.

It is the most important part of the customer journey. You may not think it’s sexy or even that interesting compared to some of the other more glamorous customer engagement out there, but get it wrong and the customer will not only hang up but they will forever associate your brand with that particular experience – and tell everyone!

Instead of customers spending a minute or two on the phone getting bounced around through people to find the correct end place, the objective is to try to take the understanding of the organisation structure off the consumer and make that the responsibility of the technology through Virtual Agent.

Speech technology makes the process simpler through three trouble-free processes:


Getting the call to the right place, with agents ‘armed and ready’ for the call creating an effortless start to the conversation. This enhances the customer experience by reducing customer effort and call duration. It also enables targeted call delivery and specific skill set training for more engaged and effective agents ultimately bettering your bottom line.


Providing secure caller identification. The Virtual Agent technology, offered by Salmat, replicates the work of a live agent, asking the identity of the caller then retrieving information from the customer data system and asking a series of questions that are of natural dialogue to the caller in order to verify their identity based upon the data that was supplied.


Providing additional information through simple automation of items and services – the snippet of targeted information gathered will shrink the level of conversation between consumer and agent. This increases overall value and streamlines the sign up process and acceptance of terms and conditions.

This technology makes the overall call experience a breeze to get from where you are, to where you want to be in a matter of minutes. Many organisations see around 46 seconds saved in handling time compared to other live-agent authentication services.

Speech technology is no longer a luxury, but critical for survival and the key to profitability. No contact centre should be without it.

Brett Feldon is a director of Biometrics Institute and GM Speech Solutions Salmat.

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