CAA Saskatchewan’s Smart Decision
For those of you who aren’t familiar with the Canadian province of Saskatchewan, here’s what you need to know (especially if you’re a motorist): the winter is bitterly cold. As the VP of Automotive Services for CAA Saskatchewan, I ‘m always looking for the best way to provide all of my members an efficient and user-friendly process to get them the help they need. In 2011, my team and I were trying to think outside of the box to help our members during what would soon become one of the coldest winters to date. We also needed something that would not break the bank, was easy to implement and could handle the up and down volume spikes we receive in our call centers.
What kind of service would be robust enough to be able to integrate with the various different systems we had in place at the time and the ability to keep my members from pulling out their hair? We happened upon SmartAction in mid-2011 and thought their Artificial Intelligence app was pretty interesting. Their product and process of top notch speech recognition capabilities and artificial intelligence helped make our decision to go with them. SmartAction, at that point, had not yet developed a self-service application for road side assistance. CAA Saskatchewan needed something, and needed it fast, so I worked very closely with SmartAction and their team of engineers and project managers to develop the roadside self-service application. SmartAction was ready and willing to take on the challenge and addressed all of my concerns.
As a team, we developed the conversation and interface we needed to help our members, especially those who were in emergency situations as soon as possible. In just a few weeks, SmartAction was able to develop a self-service application that would be able to help “at-home” members by providing them with vehicle assistance while they were safely at home. The SmartAction service can create new service calls and send help to “at-home” members who are using the “Road Service Express,” and easily handles any number of calls. Thanks to the implementation of this service, our live agents are now available to turn their attention to the calls that involve emergency situations and hold times have been reduced for all members.
Prior to SmartAction going live, we weren’t able to direct calls to the correct agent to assist callers with their specific needs, whether it was for vacation planning, insurance services or roadside assistance. All of our members were being funneled into the same call queue and were required to wait, which wasn’t working for my team or members. We worked with SmartAction to help us develop a way to get callers to the help they needed. SmartAction implemented an intelligent front door that is now redirecting callers quickly and efficiently. Within one year of this application going live, our caller wait time has been significantly reduced. Callers who were in need of assistance as soon as possible didn’t have to wait in the same line behind the caller wanting to make vacation plans. It was a win for our team.
CAA Saskatchewan and SmartAction’s relationship continues to be beneficial to our club. SmartAction is currently handling 60% of all incoming roadside assistance calls while enabling CAA Saskatchewan to reduce call center operational costs by 25%. Our members are also happy with the new service, so much so they have given the service a satisfaction rating of 4.5 out of 5. We are happy with the work SmartAction has done and continue to be excited with the results we are seeing. SmartAction is now developing an application that will be able to use GPS location services to help find members who stranded on the road and can’t provide their exact location. In addition, we hope to begin using the service to help us receive membership payments and renewals. Working with SmartAction and using intelligent voice automation was a calculated gamble, but one that paid off and enabled CAA Saskatchewan to continue to provide exceptional service to all of our members.
About the Author: Kevin Lane, VP of Automotive Services, CAA Saskatchewan
Kevin Lane is currently CAA Saskatchewan’s VP of Automotive Services. His collaboration with SmartAction has proven to be mutually beneficial for his CAA branch and SmartAction.