• April 1, 2006
  • By Colin Beasty, (former) Associate Editor, CRM Magazine

Tech Solution: Web Self-Service

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With the average agent-assisted phone call as much as 30 times more expensive than a Web self-service interaction, properly implemented Web self-service solutions can save a company time, resources, and money. Web self-service provides timely, relevant answers to customers by helping them to resolve their own issues, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. As a result, companies can increase customer satisfaction while reducing call center traffic.

ATG Answers OnDemand

Delivery Model: Web-based

Price: Starts at $15,000 (contract setup fee), with payments of $1,500 per month

Business Benefits: Companies can use Answers OnDemand to seize cross- and upsell opportunities by allowing organizations to present targeted information, promotions, and product recommendations relevant to the customer. In addition to offloading software maintenance via the hosted model, Answers OnDemand also automates processes for managing, updating, and publishing information.

Functionality: Natural language processing (NLP) performs seven levels of scrutiny on both content and inquiries to deliver the best answer to the customer. NLP analytics help prioritize content creation and maintenance through individual and clustered GAP reporting. Customizable interfaces can be linked from a company's Web environment to mirror existing branding and design policies, allowing users of OnDemand to control the answers and solutions they provide on Web sites with minimal training. Navigation functionality provides multiple options for prompting end users to help them find answers.

Contact: ATG at 617-386-1000; email at atgsales@atg.com; or visit www.atg.com

KANA Customer IQ

Delivery Model: installed software

Price: Starts at $95,000

Business Benefits: Companies can help customers with the same automated help systems used by call center agents to increase self-service adoption and curb call volume. Customers get the same answer on the phone or the Web, increasing customer satisfaction through response consistency. Last, a channel-independent knowledge base reduces implementation and maintenance costs as information is authored only once for multiple audiences.

Functionality: Customer IQ can support more than 25 languages. Expert reasoning capabilities, including natural language query, clarifying questions, diagnostic scripts, advice modeling, and dynamic learning, present solutions in order of popularity, making it easier for customers to find answers. Automated search capabilities combined with customer and Web page data quickly pinpoint relevant solutions to reduce search time and increase accuracy. The unified knowledge base lets customers find answers to their inquiries with the same automated guidance solutions used by agents, ensuring consistency of answers across channels.

Contact: KANA at 1-800-737-8738; email at education@kana.com; or visit www.kana.com

Knova Self-Service

Delivery Model: installed software

Price: Starts at $100,000 and scales with seats. (Average license fee is approximately $200,000.)
Business Benefits: Knova Self-Service is a single knowledge platform that encompasses all support channels. Companies can offer their customers guided search processes to help answer complex service issues. In addition, root cause analysis enables companies to gain insight into product and customer trends based on Web traffic.

Functionality: Knova Self-Service comes with resolution wizards, a customized set of business rules to guide users through an optimized resolution experience to target repeatable, high-cost issues. Diagnostic NLP search supports customers by helping them search for and pick concepts relevant to their needs. Knova Self-Service also has a comprehensive analytics data mart to analyze product trends and issues in self-service traffic and perform root cause analysis. Finally, the knowledge source manager drives customer interactions through any channel, with access to Web, Microsoft Office, PDF, HTML, database records, and other content formats.

Contact: Knova at 1-800-572-5748; email at info@knova.com; or visit www.knova.com

Contact Editorial Assistant Colin Beasty at cbeasty@destinationCRM.com

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