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Alaska Communications Systems Deploys Virtual Reps

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Posted September 5, 2001 By eCRMGuide.com Staff     Feedback

To avoid giving subscribers the cold shoulder, the Alaskan telco uses Edify Corporation's virtual Customer Service Representative technology to manage its support services more efficiently.

Alaska Communications Systems (ACS) will implement virtual Customer Service Representative (vCSR) technology from Edify Corporation to manage its support services more efficiently. Said Michael Jones, senior manager of business solutions at Alaska Communications Systems, "At Alaska Communications Systems we're committed to providing the highest quality service to our customers. By automating customer interaction, our customers will have quicker access to information and our customer service representatives will have more time to devote to issues that require individual attention."

ACS is Alaska's full-service telecommunications company, providing more than 400,000 subscribers with long distance and facilities-based local telephone, wireless, data, network, and Internet services. High demand requires comprehensive customer support and vCSR technology, coupled with Edify Voice, will enable 24-hour-a-day access to automated services such as account balance and payment information; service feature additions and changes; order scheduling for installations, repairs, and disconnects; directory assistance; special promotions and campaigns; and customer satisfaction surveys.

Edify solutions were chosen, said Jones, because of the sophisticated technology, ease of development, connectivity, service and voice technology that they offered. According to Jones, ACS anticipates at least 10 to 15 percent of all customer calls to be managed by Edify Voice. "We break even on our investment in Edify technology when we reach a self-service rate of 4.5 percent of all calls, and currently we are at 6 percent with no advertising."

"In the competitive Telco services market, customer satisfaction is often the big determinant in whether companies keep or lose business. Leveraging our vCSR and speech technology offerings, volume customer service operations can quickly improve overall customer service and retention," said John Kirst, senior vice president of marketing at Edify.

Edify Voice vCSR is built on Edify's Electronic Workforce platform, handling input and output from multiple channels — voice, Web, e-mail and wireless — and integrating with existing desktop and legacy systems. Kirst noted that advanced speech and voice technologies should be used to help provide improved customer service while reducing cost and increasing customer satisfaction.

Headquartered in Anchorage, Alaska, ACS provides communications services to three-fourths of the state's population, serving residents in 74 communities.

Edify, a subsidiary of S1 Corporation, develops multi-channel customer interaction solutions. The Santa Clara-based Edify has offices in London, England, Sydney, Australia, Tokyo, Japan, and Hong Kong and serves more than 2,000 custom

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