In today’s competitive environment, the customer experience has never been so important. Organisations need an innovative approach to deal with an increasing number of customer queries while reducing costs and improving the quality, speed and efficiency of every interaction.

An ever-increasing amount of these queries are coming through digital channels such as email, social media and the web. Companies need to understand these interactions and respond quickly and accurately if they are to win and retain customers. However an estimated 80% of this contact is unstructured (not organised in a pre-defined format), making it difficult and time consuming to analyse and act upon.

So how can organisations deliver the consistent, rapid and personalised responses that consumers are demanding, across multiple channels?

Linguistics and the customer experience
Linguistics, the scientific study of language, provides the answer to this growing challenge. Firstly, let’s look at how linguistic techniques work. Incoming interactions, whether via email, social media or a question asked on the web are analysed, not just for the words and language used, but for the context. This enables automatic identification of both the type of query (for example about a missing delivery) and the tone of the interaction (happy, angry, neutral). The query can then be forwarded to the best agent to deal with it (such as one in logistics), along with a suggested response that can be personalised to fit the circumstances. And, depending on the tone of the interaction it can be prioritised, with urgent queries moved to the front of the queue.

Eptica – linguistics to improve the customer experience
At Eptica, linguistics is at the heart of our entire product set. Eptica Linguistic Services (ELS) is the engine that powers all of our linguistic capabilities, driving service excellence by embedding it across every channel. ELS has been developed from the technology acquired in the 2012 purchase of linguistic pioneer Lingway.

Language is constantly changing and evolving. To ensure our products are continually mapping these changes, we have our own in-house team of linguists, benefiting customers by automatically incorporating the latest techniques and research into our software now and in the future.

Our new Eptica Enterprise Suite 9.0 software transforms the customer experience by applying linguistics and Natural Language Processing across all digital channels and languages.

By using linguistic search, automatic language detection and context-based sentiment analysis with all incoming emails, online questions and social media messages, Eptica Enterprise Suite 9.0 enables businesses to harness the power of linguistics to achieve operational excellence, increase satisfaction and gain a closer understanding of customers. This increases First Contact Resolution rates, reduces Average Handling Time and provides a deep insight into the mind of the customer.

Eptica Enterprise Suite 9.0 harnesses linguistics in four key areas:

1 – Linguistic Search:
Based on a single multilingual lexicon of over a million words and 300,000 concepts, the Eptica platform directly understands the meaning of questions, regardless of market sector, context or the type of language used, including slang or text speak/Twitter. Delivered through both web self-service and internally to contact centre agents, it improves operational efficiency and increases customer satisfaction.

2 – Meaningful content extraction:
Eptica Enterprise Suite 9.0 ensures that it only analyses the relevant parts of a message, automatically removing elements such as email signatures, legal notices and greetings. This enables faster, more accurate sentiment and trend analysis, unaffected by superfluous information.

3 – Automatic language detection:
Able to recognise 14 languages, including English, French, Chinese, Japanese and Korean, Eptica quickly routes incoming messages, such as emails and tweets, to the right agent or department to ensure a fast, tailored response.

4 – Sentiment analysis:
By detecting message tone (positive, negative or neutral) queries can be prioritised accordingly. Not only does this enable timely interventions for urgent enquiries, it provides wider insight into overall customer trends across every contact channel.

Listening to the Voice of the Customer
Additionally the Eptica platform integrates customer service with the overall business to support wider objectives. Marketing departments gain a true insight into the Voice of the Customer by studying the words and phrases used by customers, both individually and at an aggregate level. This delivers a 360 degree view across the customer journey that is vital to ensuring companies best meet consumer needs.

By analysing millions of unstructured customer service interactions, Eptica Enterprise Suite 9.0 is able to feed into company-wide Big Data initiatives, providing customer intelligence that enables more targeted and effective marketing campaigns as well as predictive analytics of future behaviour.

Using linguistics improves the customer experience and deepens understanding, while increasing efficiency and helping provide faster, more accurate responses. At a time of escalating consumer demands, Eptica Enterprise Suite 9.0 harnesses the power of linguistics to deliver major advantages to businesses.

Paul BarnesPaul Barnes – VP Operations, Eptica UK and Eire
Paul Barnes graduated with a Bsc in Economics from Cardiff University. He is an Associate of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and from 1994 to 1999 he was a managing director and part of the start up team of Adam Associates (now Neverfail). Following this he became head of Netdecisions Digital Products Group, a Corporate Private Equity vehicle, between 2000 and 2001. In 2001 he was a founder and sales & marketing VP of Fluency Voice Technology until 2006, now the UK leader in Speech Recognition applications.

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