7 Top Tips to extract value from your Speech Analytics solution

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Speech analytics technology is a substantial investment for any business, with the potential to deliver a multi-fold return over its lifetime. Understandably, simply deploying the technology and hiring some analysts won’t achieve the results you’re looking for – yet this is a common scenario that we find our clients dealing with. For a speech analytics programme to be successful, it must be woven into the strategic vision of your business, built into your business intelligence armoury and beamed into the consciousness of stakeholders.

So, how do you achieve this? It’s not as easy as the speech analytics sales pitch would have you believe, and this is where our expertise can be truly beneficial to your organisation.
Here are 7 steps to follow to ensure that each speech analytics project delivers on the promise of the technology.

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1. Define Your Objective

The simplest step is often the one most overlooked. It is critical to clearly define and agree your objective with stakeholders. This allows you to be certain about what metric you want to improve, ensure it fits within the strategy of the wider business and understand whether it’s a worthwhile endeavour.

2. Identify the Drivers

We have more data than ever at our disposal – so why do we still assume the drivers of an issue before proving it with facts? Identifying and sizing the true drivers through data analysis here will form a factual foundation and focus for the remainder of your project. Discovering the facts here also helps you prioritise against other projects through being able to compare scale and relevance.

3. Build your Categories

A common theme among organisations is skipping the previous steps and starting their journey here. The main problem this causes is a lack of direction on what actually needs building, leading to overdue or incomplete projects and missed opportunities to add value.
Building the right categories is one thing, building them right is another. Now that you’ve identified the drivers, this will provide a solid outline of scope. However, the balance of accuracy and recall of your categories is now the key focus. Are you excluding too many calls in your quest for 100% accurate results?
A key tool in keeping your balance along this tightrope is often overlooked; false-negative testing. Those calls where a phrase should have been said, but wasn’t picked up by your category, are a veritable treasure trove of language and terms to include in your build. This type of testing is critical when automating quality checks – you don’t want to be telling someone they’re failing when they’re not due to a part-tested category!

4. Find the Performance Baseline

The initial results coming through from your category build will form the baseline for the drivers and metrics you’re looking to affect. Consider retro-processing historic data to give you a representative dataset to work from. Benchmarking against a small or unrepresentative dataset will reduce the accuracy of your findings and jeopardise the validity of your project.
The future value or benefits should be calculated from this baseline – after all, this is what’s happening right now in your organisation. The pitfall here can be neglecting the baselining step; believing that once the build stage is complete, everything will fall into place. In reality, we are only at the halfway point of the journey; each step here on out is just as significant in finding, proving and delivering the value of your analytics project.

5. Size the Potential Benefits

Now that you have an understanding of current performance levels, it’s time to start sizing the benefits of any improvements to this baseline through further data analysis. This is still in the ‘what-if?’ phase, so look for sensible and tangible incremental gains. The goal here is to show what benefit your recommendations could provide to the metric or KPI you’re focusing on – the key in demonstrating it is to put that benefit into a common currency that the business will understand at all levels. (Spoiler alert: it isn’t always £££!)

6. Track Performance Changes

So, we’ve defined, identified, built, baselined and sized. Surely that’s the end of it? The findings have been presented and accepted, and everyone is happy. What else needs to be done? It always surprises us that more organisations don’t take these last two steps more often – this is where the value of your speech analytics programme is proven!
After your recommendations have been implemented, it’s now time to keep the spotlight on them. These are not only your initiatives generating value for your organisation, but also initiatives showing that your speech analytics programme is working. Performance should be documented at regular intervals and analysed, with any significant changes documented and discussed. The timeframe for tracking should be agreed in advance with Stakeholders, and they should be regularly updated with progress – it may be there’s another action required to kick-start activity. Perhaps a few Team Managers need a nudge to begin coaching the changes, or does someone need to ‘push the button’ on a new process?
If you’re not tracking it, it’s more likely to be ‘just another recommendation’ that falls by the wayside.

7. Conduct a Post-Implementation Analysis

This is where we find out the true benefit of your project and its recommendations and it goes hand-in-hand with the tracking spoken about in the previous step. You’ll already know roughly how it’s gone from the tracking, however a holistic Post-Implementation Analysis enables you to really consolidate the project.

The regular excuses for not performing a Post-Implementation Analysis are, simply, time constraints or being a low priority. However, being able to understand whether you met your objectives, what the value of any benefits were and if there are any further recommendations is critical; this means you can evidence what value your speech analytics function has brought to your organisation.
So, how do you generate value from speech analytics? Follow our steps to success and get in touch with us!