CIBC begins speech technology roll out

CIBC begins speech technology roll out

Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce is rolling out speech recognition technology across the breadth of its telephone banking operations, offering voice-activated bill payment, retail banking and mortgage services and discount brokerage.

Using only their voice, CIBC's more than 2.5 million telephone banking customers can now register their bills from any phone. Over the next several months CIBC plans to incorporate speech recognition in additional retail banking applications including bill payment, cheque re-ordering and its branch and bank machine locator service.

The bank is working with a team of speech technology companies - Norstan Canada, InterVoice-Brite and SpeechWorks International - to integrate voice recognition technology across multiple lines of business.

CIBC Mortgages Inc. will add speech recognition to its automated telephone service in mid-July to enable its English and French language customers to obtain current mortgage rates and information about a specific mortgage including interest rate, principal payment options and history, tax payment and reprints of various statements.

CIBC Investor's Edge - CIBC's discount brokerage service - has been providing clients with real-time quotes over the telephone since early last year. Using simple voice commands from virtually any phone - including wireless phones -across Canada, clients can now place equity trades, review account information and open orders.

Janice Wagner, vice-president, channel strategy and development, direct to consumer banking, CIBC, says the bank is introducing the services in response to customer demands for faster, more convenient access to financial information. The technology answers customers in a natural-sounding voice, immediately responds to spoken instructions, and completes the transaction, she says. Once customers become familiar with the service, they can speak over prompts and complete their transactions more quickly, adds Wagner.

"Customers are already choosing to complete 80 per cent of all calls using our automated telephone banking service and this technology allows us to add services that were previously too complex to automate," says Wagner. "Providing a speech interface eliminates the cumbersome and tedious touch-tone entry of longer alphanumeric strings required for some transactions. Now customers can simply say the name of the bill they want to register, the type of mortgage information they need, or name of the stock they want to trade. It's simple, intuitive and convenient."

The CIBC speech recognition solutions were developed with Norstan, a supplier of telephony based solutions and its partners, SpeechWorks and InterVoice-Brite. All of CIBC's speech applications use software from SpeechWorks, a provider of network-based speech recognition and text-to-speech (TTS) technologies and services. The services run on a platform supplied by InterVoice-Brite.

Comments: (0)