The Center for Customer-Driven Quality at Purdue University Has Conducted a Speech Recognition Best Practice Study Sponsored by Edify

Preliminary Results Indicate That Fifty Percent of Call Centers Not Currently

Speech-Enabled Plan on Implementing Speech Within the Next Year

May 12, 2005, 01:00 ET from Edify Corporation

    SANTA CLARA, Calif., May 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Edify(R) Corporation, a
 leading global supplier of voice and speech solutions, today announced it has
 joined forces with Purdue University's Center for Customer-Driven Quality to
 determine best practices for deploying speech recognition systems.  Dr. Jon
 Anton, Purdue University's director of benchmark research and world's leading
 expert in call center performance and best practices, is leading the study
 that will analyze the impact of speech recognition on customer satisfaction,
 operational efficiency and effectiveness in comparison to pure touch-tone
 operations. The study will determine speech recognition best practices by
 evaluating results of this exciting self-service technology on customer
 acceptance rates, satisfaction and cost benefits for touch-tone and speech
 recognition solutions.
     As the adoption of speech-enabled self-service and open-based standards
 and technologies such as VoiceXML, SALT, and Voice over Internet Protocol
 (VoIP) continue to rise, it is imperative to gauge their impact on the
 industry. Equally as important from an industry perspective, is gaining an
 understanding of touch-tone based call centers and if the move to speech is
 part of their organizational plans, and if not, identifying their perceptions
 and barriers of speech in meeting their customer service goals.
     "Speech is everywhere and call center professionals today are absorbing an
 ever-increasing amount of new information on how speech recognition can
 enhance customer service and reduce costs through self-service automation,"
 said Dr. Jon Anton.  "While offering a great perspective, organizations must
 glean from everyday real-world scenarios to fully understand the benefits of a
 well-designed speech solution and effectively benchmark their operational
 goals and metrics in either making their move to speech or enhancing their
 current speech solution."
     BenchmarkPortal, Inc., in conjunction with its academic partner, the
 Center for Customer-Driven Quality at Purdue University, fielded the speech
 recognition survey to its International Benchmarking Community of thousands of
 call center professionals in 43 different industries worldwide.  In 2005,
 BenchmarkPortal, Inc. received a U.S. Patent for its unique methodology of
 call center performance evaluation through metric gap analysis.  After an
 initial set of questions to qualify the size of the organization and its call
 center volume, participants were guided into survey branches that included:
 1) speech-enabled call centers, 2) touch-tone based call centers that plan on
 implementing speech within 12 months, and 3) touch-tone based call centers
 that do not have current plans to implement speech.  All respondents were
 asked to report on key findings such as call usage and success rates,
 marketing and survey efforts, criteria for key solution selection as well as
 the impact on customer satisfaction, plus bottom-line costs and operational
 gains.  At the end, they were asked to articulate the planned next steps in
 meeting their organizational goals.
     "Establishing best practices is very important to further the adoption of
 speech and ensure companies get the most out of their speech and voice
 deployment," said Marie Jackson, vice president of marketing at Edify. "This
 benchmark report demonstrates that there is significant value in speech for
 companies of all sizes in all industries."
     Dr. Jon Anton has also worked with Edify on his recently published book,
 "Enabling IVR Self-Service with Speech Recognition."  Christopher "Blade"
 Kotelly, chief VUI designer and director of Edify Design Collaborative, wrote
 the foreword for the book focusing on best practices for designing voice user
 interfaces.  Edify and Dr. Jon Anton will host a Web cast and report on the
 survey findings on May 18, 2005 at 9:00 a.m. Pacific.  All participants will
 receive the full published report.  To register visit
     About BenchmarkPortal
     BenchmarkPortal is the custodian of the Purdue University Center for
 Customer-Driven Quality database of contact center metrics, the largest in the
 world. It provides reports, products and services for contact centers in the
 areas of operational metrics, customer satisfaction measurement and agent
 satisfaction measurement. BenchmarkPortal's Web site can be found at:
     About Edify Corporation
     With fourteen years of industry leadership and innovation in voice and
 speech applications, Edify(R) has assisted in more than 2,000 deployments
 around the world in automating customer service, improving customer
 satisfaction and enabling new revenue generating opportunities while reducing
 costs.   Applications built with Edify are scalable, multilingual and
 flexible, allowing companies to easily integrate backend systems with multiple
 contact interfaces. Edify's open, standards-based platform successfully
 manages millions of customer interactions every day across a broad range of
 industries. The Edify Design Collaborative and consultancy experts assist
 customers with the design and deployment of speech solutions that provide
 increased customer satisfaction with reduced costs.  You speak, we
     Additional information about Edify may be obtained by calling 408-982-2000
 (USA), 81-3-5532-7827 (Japan) or +44 162 885 0222 (Europe, Middle East,
 Africa) or via the World Wide Web at
     NOTE:  Edify is a registered trademark of Edify Corporation.   All other
 product and company names mentioned are the property of their respective
 owners and are mentioned for identification purposes only.
     Contact:  Cynthia Dimidik of Edify Corporation, +1-408-486-1791 or; or Marisa Lee of A&R Partners, +1-650-762-2883, or, for Edify Corporation.

SOURCE Edify Corporation