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Question: Should speech and text analytics be used outside the contact center?


Speech and text analytics, known jointly as interaction analytics (IA), can and should be perceived, managed and applied in a way to benefit the entire enterprise and its customers. The potential uses of IA span all customer-facing departments in an enterprise, including sales and marketing, among others. Interaction analytics should be used to improve and optimize many sales-related activities, including determining which products and/or services are trending up or down, which channels and salespeople are most effective and best received at any point in time, the prices that are right and which ones need resetting, and more. 

Marketing also stands to benefit from using IA solutions, as the findings are likely to save the company significant expense while increasing revenue generated from initiatives. Interaction analytics should be used to replace or complement focus groups and to validate new ideas for products and services identified by focus groups or suggested by customers. IA should be used to test-market new programs before making major investments; this takes the concept of A/B testing to a higher level. Interaction analytics can be used to identify at-risk customers before they are angry enough to threaten to close their accounts, and these solutions can help determine the most effective methods and channels for interacting with customers and prospects. Interaction analytics should be used to conceptually “take the pulse” of a company’s customers and reduce the risk of social media mistakes, which are very costly to a brand. It should be used to identify the products and services that are trending at any given time, positioning companies to more quickly meet the needs and wants of their customers. 

Many other departments will also benefit from gaining a first-hand view of customer expectations and feedback. This includes auditing and compliance functions that need to make sure employees follow the company’s rules and guidelines when interacting with customers and prospects. The legal department can capture and understand facts from the voice of the customer or the voice of the employee, to support a legal position. Along the same lines, IA is being used to ensure that agents fully adhere to a variety of regulatory guidelines, such as PCI DSS, the European Union’s GDPR, and the TCPA in the US, just to mention a few. Collections can use IA to make sure agents are adhering to the many guidelines for interacting with customers who owe money, and they can use its predictive analytics features to determine which customers are most likely to pay. Human resources can utilize the solution to identify the candidates who are best suited for various jobs. The enterprise uses of IA have few limits and are restricted only by a company’s willingness and receptivity in operationalizing the findings of this artificial intelligence-based solution.