Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Adventures in Speech Analytics- Part III

By Diana Aviles

Here we are… Part III is finally here! Where we last left off, I discussed how queries are a major aspect of Speech Analytics.  I also mentioned the importance of establishing a business need for queries; but what happens if there is not a strong enough business need to build a query for a particular topic? Well, the good news is that you are not out of luck and that leads us to part three of “Adventures in Speech Analytics”- Ad Hoc searches.

A friendly guide to ad hoc searches

An ad hoc search is a customized search you can perform within the SA tool.  It is the most common method end users interact with in the tool.  Ad Hoc searches are one of the most exciting parts of speech analytics because it allows the user to have access to deep dive into customer-agent interactions.  Similar to query building, there is a bit of strategy and patience required in order to get the best results.

I have been fortunate to be involved with speech analytics in some aspect since the very beginning of my call center career.  The one thing I often hear from other professionals is that they find ad hoc searches difficult.  I have compiled a few tips and suggestions for how you can have a positive ad hoc search experience!

I’m going to provide an example of a “tricky” type of ad hoc search situation.  Let’s say someone reaches out to you about a new pilot program they have in the Chicago call center that has agents attempting to collect a one-time charge (OTC) from customers for home security equipment upfront prior to service installation.  The ultimate goal is to help agents better ensure a sale and reduce breakage of commission.  That is where you get involved- as this person wants you to provide a weekly report of how many agents are mentioning that customers must pay for their equipment upfront.  Piece of cake, right?  Well, the thing is there are many different OTC’s going on within the organization such as installation fees and late fees.  Since this report is specific to security equipment you are probably asking yourself how the heck am I supposed to sort through hundreds of calls to find Prince Charming?

Take a deep breath and let’s start nice and slow
  • Set up your search parameters - You are going to be running this search only for one site (Chicago) so focus your energy on just that location where you know these calls are hiding.
  • Queries, Queries, Queries - Remember queries are designed to be your partners in business! Sometimes it’s helpful to take a quick look at your query database to see if you have an existing relevant query or two in the system to run concurrently with your search.  Most organizations will have queries developed around the core lines of business they offer.  In this case, you may find a few different home security related queries that have a core of the logic you are looking for.  This is going to help further vet out your search by focusing on security based mentions in customer-agent interactions.
  • Use your words - Oftentimes it’s helpful to request guidelines and scripting that was provided to the agents so that you can formulate your searches based on what the agent was instructed to say.  Keep in mind that sometimes this is not always the best approach as oftentimes keeping things simple and searching for common sense dialogue is most effective.  There is going to be a lot of trial and error here so be patient and stay optimistic.  You will surely find that Prince Charming of search terms.
  • Validation - This was mentioned in the last article regarding query building and it is still relevant when you are only performing ad hoc searches.  You want to make sure that your confidence rating of your search and data is in an acceptable range.  You found the “Keep it Simple Sweetie” approach of the term “Pay your equipment upfront”, when searched within the few home security queries, yielded a 92% confidence rating. Great going!
  • Smile and bask in the satisfaction - You are now confident that you are able to identify how many equipment OTC mentions have been made on a weekly basis.  You are now contributing to a larger picture of being able to help your organization see the correlation of collecting equipment fees up front with reducing the number of home security order cancellations.

With patience and practice you will become more comfortable with providing valuable data based on ad hoc searches.  I also recommend that you reach out to your speech analytics program manager, or if you are extra lucky to a query builder, if you ever find yourself in a difficult situation.  Sometimes there are methods and approaches that these individuals may be able to recommend to help you out of a tough spot.

Operations Manager, Speech Analytics 

With more than 4 years of Quality Assurance experience in a call center environment, Diana's objective is to simultaneously promote and educate the world of Speech Analytics with a human touch; one which further emphasizes the importance of First Call Resolution, and overall customer experience.

Follow Diana on LinkedIn.

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