March 14, 2012
Apogee, Flint Energy Partnership Combines BillingInsights and IVR
By Rajani Baburajan, TMCnet Contributor
Apogee Interactive, a provider of online energy efficiency solutions to the utility industry, in partnership with Flint Energy, recently combined Flint Energies' Interactive Voice Response (IVR) with Apogee's new Interactive Text Response (ITR) enabled by the company’s BillingInsights.
Recently executives from both companies shared insights on the combined solution at the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association's 2012 TechAdvantage Conference. Addressing the conference attendees, Apogee Interactive Business Development Executive Jon Scott, and Flint Energies' Sr. V.P., Jimmy Autry, highlighted the success of the solution and said ITR is the way of the future.
Apogee's BillingInsights gives automated answer to customer’s queries regarding billing. The solution features a sophisticated analysis involving customer billing data, meter-read dates, and coincident weather.
By integrating IVR with BillingInsights, customers can listen to a voice message explaining the differences in their bill amounts and offering suggestions for why it may have changed and tips on how to lower them. The combined solution also includes Interactive Text Response that allows members to receive this information via text message. The text message also links to Flint's BillingInsights tool on the Web site, where detailed information is displayed.
“Customers want quick answers and have come to expect them to be available 24/7, and increasingly, they aren't talking as much as they're texting,” said Apogee president & CEO, Susan Gilbert, in a statement. “This customer service benefit of ITR is huge by itself, but combine that with the enormous savings potential from freeing up CSR (News - Alert) time and you have a game-changer for utilities striving to make the most of every dollar."
Both Apogee and Flint Energies have been partners since long. Flint has been instrumental in the evolution of Apogee's powerful, RESNET accredited online energy use applications. The company is currently responsible for making Apogee's complete suite of energy education and bill analysis tools available to members.
Speech technology is one of the few industries that showed greater resilience during the recession. A recent report from Global Industry Analysts (GIA) finds that global speech technology market will reach $31.3 billion by the year 2017. This industry segment contributed to a major share of the revenue for the software industry, according to GIA.
Edited by Juliana Kenny
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