• Create BookmarkCreate Bookmark
  • Create Note or TagCreate Note or Tag
  • PrintPrint
Share this Page URL
Help

Part: I The Background

Part I: The Background

In recent years large companies have started to use speech-recognition technology to serve their customers better, save money, and even grow revenue. However, the technology alone doesn't enable these benefits—effective speech-recognition user-interface design is critical to achieve these goals.

Many companies are confronted with the question: How can we satisfy thousands (or millions) of customers who, for the most part, all want the same information? To answer this question, we think about using automation technologies and self-service technologies. Connect a database to a Web server, add a good user interface, and millions of people who have computers can get information they need. However, not everyone has access to a computer when they want or need to use one. And some problems or questions are still best handled by a live customer-service representative. The telephone is a logical technology to take advantage of, since telephones and cellular phones are ubiquitous.

One solution that takes advantage of the phone as a medium for self-service is the call center. Hire lots of people to answer phones, train them correctly, and provide them access to the right information. Once again we solve a business problem, but unfortunately time has shown us that call centers are often poorly staffed by representatives who may or may not represent the company well to a caller who may have had to wait for several minutes, only to be talking to the wrong person. In this all-too-common case, the problems are not solved—they are exacerbated, and with this solution the company does not get any cost-savings associated with self-service automation.

So how can we satisfy thousands or millions of customers who need or want to use the telephone to interact with the company? Touchtone systems have been used to solve this problem, but are infamous for their caller-satisfaction catastrophes that result from poor design and technological limitations. Speech-recognition technology can overcome many of the technological limitations associated with touch-tone systems, but must be used the right way, for the right customers to solve the right business problems.

Part I of this book is a primer that covers why businesses have chosen to deploy speech recognition, the basic principles of the recognition technology, and the psychological aspects that underlie all speech-recognition applications. It is important to consider how each of these three elements are inexorably related: the business problems can only be solved using robust technology; however, understanding and using the best technology doesn't mean that callers will want to use the deployed system or will be able to use it. A system that fulfills all the objectives can only be rendered if the designer has an understanding of social psychology and how to apply it.



PREVIEW

                                                                          

Not a subscriber?

Start A Free Trial


  
  • Creative Edge
  • Create BookmarkCreate Bookmark
  • Create Note or TagCreate Note or Tag
  • PrintPrint