As the shopping season approaches, retailers can expect disgruntled customers.
Posted Nov 15, 2007
As the holiday season approaches, retailers can expect to receive angry phone calls from disgruntled customers, with complaints ranging from entire shipments gone missing to sweaters delivered in the wrong color or size.
With the aggressive retail competition that plays out each holiday season, companies know they can lose a fortune by not immediately resolving the concerns of unhappy customers. "When you get a lot of calls, you need to react very quickly," says Yoel Goldenberg, vice president of contact center and enterprise solutions at NICE Systems.
To help retailers prepare for the inevitable avalanche of customer complaints, NICE Systems has put together a five-part contact center product suite called NICE SmartCenter. This technology, built from the combination of existing NICE applications with workforce and performance management tools gained during NICE's acquisitions of IEX and Performix late last year, allows companies to fully monitor employee and customer interactions to resolve conflicts early on.
The NICE SmartCenter offers:
customer feedback surveys; and
Other components of the SmartCenter application include keyword-spotting based on phonetic searches, call-logging, transcription generation, text mining, and emotion detection. Everything in the product suite is linked back to the user's CRM and sales tools as well.
The system can be programmed to spot hundred of keywords, and even has a component that will allow managers to know when a customer's decibel level became elevated or when foul language was used. These pieces of the solution, though, operate not in real time but in near-real time. "It's better to let the agent handle the call, and if more action is needed after the interaction has ended, then the call center manager can get involved," Goldenberg explains. "You do not want to send the message that as soon as a customer says the 'F'-word a manager will get on the line."
The delayed response also lets the manager get all the background before dealing with the customer, and to get back to him only when she's ready, Goldenberg adds. It also eliminates unnecessary files and records, allowing managers to respond only to those calls that require further action. "If the customer called, got what he needed, and hung up, you do not need to have a full transcript, etc." Goldenberg says. "You only need it if the customer is having problems."
Goldenberg describes the NICE SmartCenter as "an electronic market analyst," letting customer service agents and managers know what customers like and don't like about a company and its products, what they're complaining about, and even, in some cases, what the competition is doing.
The two major advantages of the system, he says, are its speed and accuracy. "If a customer is threatening to leave [the company], you can catch it earlier and have a better chance to save [the business]."
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