We recognize that our speech analytics customers use speech analytics in different ways for different reasons.
A sales VP would use speech analytics to increase sales, which is a metric that is too easy to track. A support (CX) VP would use speech analytics to ensure customers have a delightful experience with the company, which could be tracked by NPS scores. In either of these cases we run a series of complex algorithms to deliver an easy-to-read and actionable score for every call. These scores are used to create the report that agents and supervisors can get to help them know what they are doing well and where they can improve to hit their sales goals or increase their NPS numbers.
How, then, would a collections agency use speech analytics? Well, you could definitely use speech analytics and see how they change metrics you are probably measuring, such as DSO, RPC, and PTP. Instead of relying on your agents to manually report that they are talking to the right party, or that they get a promise to pay, you can easily set up a speech analytics rule that looks for certain language to indicate a positive or negative hit for those (and other) criteria.
Moving metrics is great. But in the collections world there is a much more important and compelling reason to use speech analytics. How would you like to know, with near 100% accuracy on 100% of every inbound and outbound call, that you are not in violation of any federal laws? Put another way, how would you like to decrease your risk of having to pay federal fines for violations your agents make?
Nothing should be more scary to a small collections agency owner than knowing that one rogue agent could say something, again and again, and incur tens of thousands of dollars in fines. Check out this snippet from an article from Ryder Law:
The Minnesota Department of Commerce brought down the hammer on a local debt collector recently, stripping First Financial Services and its owner of their collection licenses and levying $100,000 in fines for violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
It is not known if the company and owner can borrow the money from a family member, put the fines on a credit card, or make monthly payments to cover the hefty fines.
Want to rethink that training you were preparing for this week? This is scary stuff.
At Snowfly we know that positive reinforcement, recognition, and even rewards are a great complement to train and motivate your employees. This leads to better retention, better employee performance, and better job satisfaction. But recognition, incentives, and training are just parts of your job to ensure that things are happening in accordance with the law. The best way to know what is being said on the phones has historically been to do a manual audit. Listen in on live or recorded calls and listen for violations. Listen for topics to include in your training. Listen for star, or problem, agents.
But those audits have two serious flaws. First, you can only listen in on a percentage of calls, unless your auditing staff is as big as your agent staff (which is uncommon). Second, let’s say you have an amazing auditing staff that listens in on every single call (impossible, but just imagine with me). You are relying on individuals to catch everything. Humans will do some things very well, even things a computer finds hard to do (like determine from the tone of either person on the call the meaning behind every word), but there are so many factors that could cause a phone auditor to miss or mistake parts of a call. Is the auditor tired? Is the auditor thinking about after-work plans? Does the auditor miss certain parts of the conversation due to distractions, phrase fatigue (where they have heard a phrase so many times it doesn’t stand out anymore), or are they biased for or against the particular agent then are listening to? Human nature is such that we can’t get 100% consistent, non-subjective results, even if we can audit for 100% of calls.
We’re not saying that Snowfly Speech Analytics eliminates the need for humans. But let us use technology to virtually eliminate your risk and have humans monitor the reports to determine next steps. This could be figuring out what the next steps are, such as individual or team training. It could be figuring out changes to onboarding or the operating procedures. It could be rewards or discipline. It could be changing hiring practices… it could be a plethora of things. This is what good managers do: they take accurate information and make decisions to create or change systems and processes.
Snowfly Speech Analytics is an affordable solution that helps collections agencies get there. From business optimization to reduction in violations risk to improving the culture, retention, and performance on your team, we are ready to help.