Electric Utility Outbound Collections: Aspect Software

Author: Aspect Software

Date: 16th February 2012

The Business Challenge

An electric utility company was looking for a solution that would address the following business challenges – all critical elements in the utilities industry:
- Efficiently manage collections efforts using advanced technology with limited agent resources.
- Increase outbound outage notifications to reach customers before, during and after an electrical outage to improve the overall customer experience.
- Manage resources effectively to continue meeting government mandated compliance rules.

Developing Distinctive Uses for a Unified Solution

As a longtime user of Aspect® Unison® Predictive Dialer, Aspect® CallCenter® ACD and Aspect® Customer Self ServiceTM, the utility had significant experience working with Aspect. Pleased with the solid performance of all of the Aspect products,

the company recognized that in order to maximize resources, particularly in the collections area, they needed an outbound solution with additional capabilities, including outbound voice self-service functionality and the ability to manage both inbound and outbound calls.

The utility decided to migrate to Aspect Unified IP. Aspect Unified IP supports inbound, outbound, voice, email, SMS, chat and instant messaging (IM) to open the gateway to customer self-service, proactive customer service outreach and consumer engagement in the social sphere. This complete customer contact solution also delivers a voice portal feature, recording and quality management, and unified reporting and administration capabilities in a single platform.

The company recognized that to attain its enhanced collection goals and to build up its outage notifications procedures, Aspect Unified IP would be a good fit. Specifically, Aspect Unified IP addresses the utility’s needs by offering extensive capabilities, such as voice self-service and unique caller ID that they are unable to find in other vendors solutions.

Successfully Meeting Customer Needs

Since implementing Aspect Unified IP, the electric company’s calling campaigns have met with great success. Using the dialer to make outbound calls to customers that are 30, 60 and 90 days late on payments, in one month alone, the contact center placed 100,000 collection calls which generated 21,000 callbacks.

When the customer receives the collections call, the utility has set-up the outbound voice portal to play a message to the customer notifying them of a “Work Order” to collect payment. They are then given the option of pressing 1 on their phone to speak to an agent about making their payment. This action then generates an inbound call to the Aspect CallCenter ACD, where they are given further options through the self-service application to either make a payment via the self-service system or to speak directly to an agent.

Essentially, the company has automated almost the entire collections process with great success – they have doubled the number of call backs - and at a reduced cost.

Aspect Software

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