Leading Insurance Provider Call Center

Enables 14,000 agents with a single view of customer and product data and reduces costs

Published on 31-Jan-2013

Leading Insurance Provider Call Center


Big Data


With over fifty-years of commitment to providing affordable insurance, one leading provider takes pride in delivering tangible value to its customers, members and stakeholders.

Business need:
Inefficient access to huge volumes of siloed customer and product data reduced agent productivity and increased average call handle time. Agents needed faster access to information.

IBM® InfoSphere® Data Explorer seamlessly connects disparate data sources and provides quick, fluid access to all organizational information in a single unified view from one access point.

· Improves productivity for 14,000 agents, saving an average of 3 seconds on call handle time and millions of dollars annually. · Robust scalability helps ensure 99.999 percent up-time at every location, delivering a commanding query-per-second speed. · Delivers value equal to 141 full-time employees, saving US$11.2 million per year.

Case Study

With over fifty-years of commitment to providing affordable insurance, one leading provider takes pride in delivering tangible value to its customers, members and stakeholders. The company recognized that providing a positive customer experience on a service or sales call is the smartest way to maximize each customer interaction. However, over time, several line-of-business units began noticing a rise in call volumes with unacceptable average call handle time, a key measure of efficiency.

The call center environment relies on many different applications and data sources, ranging from repositories for alerts, policies and customer care documents to an Oracle Database that houses key customer information. Call center agents sometimes had to access all applications to handle just one call – opening multiple windows and jumping from one application to the next. The business managers realized that there was a need for faster, easier access to all customer information.

Faster access to relevant and accurate customer and product information would speed agent response time and shorten average call handle time. The company selected IBM InfoSphere Data Explorer to integrate huge volumes of data from across multiple sources and applications and effectively support managing inbound customer calls. Enabling the call center to operate more efficiently would have a positive impact on customer service.

Providing seamless data access across the enterprise
Integrating IBM InfoSphere Data Explorer into the call center environment seamlessly connects all disparate data sources and provides agents with quick, fluid access to all organizational information in a single unified view from one access point. With one click, agents can view relevant information collected from each repository across the enterprise.

Agents are also able to save important results into shared bookmarks – improving recall for all agents when similar questions arise. Consolidating information and simplifying access has eliminated the need to navigate through multiple applications and enabled agents to complete calls in much less time. According to company executives, InfoSphere Data Explorer adds tremendous agility to this call center’s 14,000 users, saving an average of three seconds on call handle time and millions of dollars annually.

Enhancing the customer experience
IBM InfoSphere Data Explorer enhances service and the customer experience. Executives attested that it soon became a “mission critical deployment” for the organization. Before responding to a call, agents first log into InfoSphere Data Explorer and assume one of the approved roles assigned by call center supervisors. Agents no longer struggle to find information and can quickly provide answers retrieved directly from call center applications powered by InfoSphere Data Explorer. With greater access to accurate, real-time information, agents are more efficient and achieve a higher quality of service.

Reducing agent turnover
One strategic business goal was to reduce the agent turnover costs across lines of business. The annual agent turnover rate from 50 to 90 percent had a significant impact on hiring and training costs. Each agent had to be trained on all of the company’s different applications and content repositories.

Implementing InfoSphere Data Explorer accelerated and simplified the training program. For new agents, using this single user interface, instead of multiple data sources, significantly reduced the learning curve. Agents became empowered and more efficient – immediately increasing productivity and enhancing job satisfaction. The company reduced costs to hire and train new agents, and InfoSphere Data Explorer delivered value equal to 141 full-time employees, saving US$11.2 million per year.

Supporting compliance with policies and regulations
Insurance is a highly regulated industry. From state to state, policies and regulations differ and change frequently. It is critical that each agent receives only the information pertinent to a specific client base – typically limited to a single state.

InfoSphere Data Explorer creates a unique profile for each agent based on assigned regions, policies and products sold. This practice supports industry compliance and helps ensure that customers receive accurate information for each location. In addition, InfoSphere Data Explorer alerts agents to any changes that may affect a region’s policies and key customer accounts.

By pushing relevant information to agents, InfoSphere Data Explorer drastically reduces the time agents spend on sales calls and improves the close ratio. If a policy change is made, or if a disaster increases potential calls, agents are alerted immediately and can prepare for spikes in call volume.

Delivering a scalable solution
Even in the company’s distributed operating environment, ensuring 99.999 percent up time at each location is critical. To support this requirement, InfoSphere Data Explorer provides a broad reach that effectively erases information silos – irrespective of business units or state.

By deploying several instances of InfoSphere Data Explorer across many servers, thousands of agents can log-in and access all data simultaneously. Robust scalability also helps ensure high performance, delivering a commanding query-per-second speed, so that performance during peak hours and across the United States is never compromised.

IBM InfoSphere Data Explorer delivers the efficiency and real-time access to customer information that this call center needed to increase productivity and elevate customer service. This technology empowers agents, reduces costs and improves overall call center operations.

For more information
To learn more about IBM InfoSphere Data Explorer, please contact your IBM sales representative or IBM Business Partner, or visit the following website: ibm.com/software/data/infosphere/data-explorer

To learn more about IBM big data solutions, visit: ibm.com/software/data/bigdata

Products and services used

IBM products and services that were used in this case study.

InfoSphere Data Explorer

Legal Information

© Copyright IBM Corporation 2013 IBM Corporation Software Group Route 100 Somers, NY 10589 Produced in the United States of America February 2013 IBM, the IBM logo, ibm.com, and InfoSphere are trademarks of International Business Machines Corp., registered in many jurisdictions worldwide. Other product and service names might be trademarks of IBM or other companies. A current list of IBM trademarks is available on the web at “Copyright and trademark information” at ibm.com/legal/copytrade.shtml The content of this document is current as of the initial date of publication and may be changed by IBM at any time. Not all offerings are available in every country in which IBM operates. The performance data and client examples cited are presented for illustrative purposes only. Actual performance results may vary depending on specific configurations and operating conditions. It is the user’s responsibility to evaluate and verify the operation of any other products or programs with IBM products and programs. THE INFORMATION IN THIS DOCUMENT IS PROVIDED “AS IS” WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING WITHOUT ANY WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND ANY WARRANTY OR CONDITION OF NON-INFRINGEMENT. IBM products are warranted according to the terms and conditions of the agreements under which they are provided. The client is responsible for ensuring compliance with laws and regulations applicable to it. IBM does not provide legal advice or represent or warrant that its services or products will ensure that the client is in compliance with any law or regulation.