Virginia Beach CIS system enhanced with IVR integration

Ventyx, a private software provider to the utility industry, announced the successful integration of an interactive voice response (IVR) system with its Customer Suite customer information system (CIS) at the City of Virginia Beach, empowering residents with convenient 24/7 access to utility-related city information via the phone. The resulting solution has improved efficiency in the city's call center and enhanced customer service for city residents...

ATLANTA, May 20, 2008 -- Ventyx™, a private software provider to the utility industry, announced the successful integration of an interactive voice response (IVR) system with its Customer Suite customer information system (CIS) at the City of Virginia Beach, empowering residents with convenient 24/7 access to utility-related city information via the phone. The resulting solution has improved efficiency in the city's call center and enhanced customer service for city residents.

"We're seeing some very positive results from the integrated IVR system," said Bob Montague, City of Virginia Beach public utilities business manager. "The ROI is ahead of schedule. We're on pace to have one full day's worth of call volume removed from the call center each month just in the payment extensions that customers are processing on their own. In addition, our abandon call rate is down 60 percent, and our average wait time for a customer to get to a customer service representative is down by more than 50 percent."

The City of Virginia Beach serves 135,000 customers with water, storm water and sanitary sewer services. Their successful implementation involved the cooperation of Ventyx and a host of integration partners. The city contracted with IVR Nortel to install the system, and Nortel had had three divisions involved-IVR, Computer Telephony Integration and Voice Recording. Presidio Networked Solutions was the city's overall telephony integrator who managed the agreement between the city and Nortel. The city itself had two divisions (Business and IT) involved, and Ventyx employed business, programming and hosting divisions to implement the integration.

"Integrating the IVR with our Customer Suite truly required a team effort and intense coordination," said Ventyx Senior Project Manager Jim Redick. "This is a great example of Ventyx production support working with multiple vendors and applications to provide improved client productivity and increased end customer service and convenience. The range and flexibility of our services allow us to lead, work in conjunction with other companies and/or provide consultation to support the ongoing needs of our clients."

The integrated IVR/CIS system provides a real-time interface to Customer Suite available to customers 24/7. This interface allows customers to access and process specific information over the phone without requiring assistance from the city's CSRs. As part of the interface, Customer Suite provides on-demand, real-time information to the caller. Based on the caller's response, the solution will accept updates and complete the associated transactions. During business hours, a caller has the option to transfer to a representative anytime during the call. If this selection is chosen, Customer Suite provides the representative with the appropriate screens via an integrated screen popping solution to answer the caller's questions and complete the associated transactions.

"This successful implementation provides yet more evidence of the unparalleled flexibility and workflow capabilities of the Ventyx Customer Suite," said Ventyx Program Manager Sandra Scott. "By integrating diverse customer touch points such as IVR systems, Customer Suite can manage all customer-facing processes, from simple inquiries, to marketing initiatives, to complex billing. And, it manages all customer contacts, from initiation to resolution. As a result, our clients can better serve their customers while managing costs."

Ventyx is a leading business solutions provider, delivering asset management, mobile workforce management, customer care, energy trading and risk management, energy operations, and energy analytics solutions to more than 900 energy, utility and communications customers, as well as to asset-intensive customers in selected commercial markets.

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