why use speech recognition?
Some of the advantages and benefits of using automated speech recognition are as follows:
  • Savings: For routine calls, automated speech recognition is significantly more cost effective than using human operators. Please see the commercial return page for more information.
  • Opportunities: Where a business or opportunity may not have been viable with human operators, it may become so using automated speech recognition. See commercial return.
  • Revenue: Speech recognition applications can be placed on revenue generating numbers. Again, please see commercial return.
  • Speed: Transaction speeds can be very fast. Even after relatively few uses, callers readily learn to barge in to the questions and complete their transactions more quickly than when using a human operator. This can be enhanced further with the use of DTMF shortcut keys.
  • Availability: Speech recognition applications are active 24/7/365, an expensive proposition using human agents.
  • Port Management: An automated speech recognition application, once written, can easily be activated or deactivated on any number of concurrent lines or 'ports'. Doing the same with human operators is less easy as recruitment, and training times are factors. This leads to the following benefits.
    • Active Ports: If you are experiencing a long term higher or lower call volume than expected, you can easily change the number of ports deployed, and hence optimise your costs.
    • Burst activity: Where a large burst of call activity is expected for a small period of time, such as immediately after a television commercial, extra ports can be leased for that duration.
    • Sharing ports: With a hosting provider catering for a number of clients, ports can be managed so that busy periods for one client use available ports from a client that has a quiet period at that time and vice versa.
  • Coverage: Many people do not have easy access to the internet, so are excluded by an internet only option, whereas telephone coverage is virtually ubiquitous.
  • Convenience: Experience has shown that even where internet access is available, people still prefer using automated speech recognition access as it is more natural and convenient. After all, even when at home, it's quicker to dial a number than it is to boot up a computer and connect to the internet.
  • Consistency: Human operators, while flexible, result in a noticeably different caller experience for each call. An automated speech recognition solution will allow a familiar and consistent experience each time.
  • Security: A persons phone number is often a good method of verifying who they are, so some or all of an often tedious internet logon procedure can be removed.
  • Flexibility: While speech recognition is good at taking routine calls, we do acknowledge that human agents are better at taking more general enquiries. We can, subject to the infrastructure in place, switch between the automated and human agents. For example, a human agent can take the call and if required, switch to an automated recogniser to complete it.
  • Efficiency: Some information such as an address is particularly hard for automated speech recognisers. Even in this situation automated recognition can be used for the call and the recordings of the addresses manually transcribed offline. Manual transcription takes a fraction of the call handling time so accurate data can still be obtained but at a much lower cost