Improving Telephone & Internet Retail Financial Services

Improving Telephone & Internet Retail Financial Services

Research in ERPE to measure customer reaction and attitude to communication interfaces in new consumer services has influenced service provision at Bank of Scotland, Halifax and Lloyds Group. The metric and the use methodology have been adopted in several service industry sectors - telephony, retail, travel and financial services. Since 2008 the use is encountered on a daily basis by the millions of retail banking customers using Lloyds internet, mobile phone and telephone banking services.

Key outputs of ERPE research in the field of Usability Engineering are:

  • A practical and robust usability engineering metric verified with customer attitude data.
  • An associated use methodology [1 - 3] to assess and measure the commercial impact of new consumer-facing technologies in telephone and internet based retail services.

Early usability engineering research has identified the key attributes for evaluating the usability of automated telephone dialogues, culminating in the initial development of a reliable metric for telephony services. The usability metric has been continually refined to improve the customer experience. The metric has been further validated with technologies including Internet [1] automatic speech recognition and speech synthesis [2], mobile phone services [3], biometrics, including customer authentication.

Lloyds has embraced the ERPE approach for all new business processes making a material enhancement of their customer services. They have created innovative services that now handle 60 Million Internet banking customer log-ins per month via their award-winning service plus 9 Million automated telephone banking customer log-ins per month. Lloyds assesses that the impact in terms of business benefits from our research is “at least five times the many millions of funding that they have invested in the ERPE research programme”.

[1] McBreen H.M. and Jack, M.A., ‘Evaluating Humanoid Synthetic Agents in E-Retail Applications’, IEEE Transactions on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics, Part A, Systems and Humans, Vol. 31, No.5, pp. 394-405, 2001. DOI:10.1109/3468.952714.

[2] Wilkie, J., Jack M.A. and Littlewood, P., ‘System-Initiated Digressive Proposals in Automated Human-Computer Telephone Dialogues: The Use of Contrasting Politeness Strategies’, International Journal of Human Computer Studies, Vol. 62, No. 1, pp. 41-71, 2005. DOI:10.1016/j.ijhcs.2004.08.001.

[3] Peevers, G., Douglas, G., and Jack, M.A., ‘A Usability Comparison of Three Alternative Message Formats for an SMS Banking Service’. International Journal of Human Computer Studies, Vol. 66, pp.113-123, February 2008. DOI:10.1016/j.ijhcs.2007.09.005.

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Monday, 17 March, 2014 - 12:01