Multi-Beneficiary Authentication: Minimize Frustration by Becoming More Customer-Centric

​Consider this scenario: A wife is traveling abroad and her credit card is lost. She's traveling for business, and has limited time to notify the bank, put a hold on all recent and new charges, and ask the bank to issue a new card. Her husband steps in, but the bank can't authorize the transaction as he's not allowed to make changes on the account.

A similar case would be if a parent was to fall ill, and their children need to contact the insurance company to learn about their medical coverage. Once again, the insurance company can't authorize sharing this information because it only allows the client to gain access. There are countless similar scenarios where firms, for good reasons, limit access into customer accounts to the primary beneficiary / account holder.

How can contact centers enable family or other authorized individuals to access such information and make changes while still protecting the customer account from unauthorized third-party access?

This is an area where using multi-beneficiary capabilities within a voice biometrics solution helps reduce the complexity of managing multiple beneficiaries while ensuring customer data remains secure. Specifically, the process involves the company to associating multiple voiceprints with an individual account. When a caller uses the IVR systems or contacts an agent, the voice biometrics sys​tem automatically analyzes the current voiceprint against those associated with the account to authenticate.

It's important to note that multi-beneficiary authentication isn't just helping contact centers serving consumers; it also enables contact centers serving business clientele to deliver seamless customer experiences. For example, a manufacturing firm might have multiple offices managing the phone services for each individual office. The telecommunications provider for the firm would establish one account for this business client that simultaneously serves all office managers. Adding the voiceprint of each office manager helps the telecommunications firm minimize the effort of their business clientele by making it easier to support their business activities with minimal to no disruption. Such multi-beneficiary capabilities through voice biometrics are particularly helpful for contact centers to maintain their 'VIP' or 'platinum' accounts through delivering top-notch customer experiences where authentication moves from being a hurdle to an enabler for swift customer service.

Aberdeen's research shows that 20% of contact centers currently use voice biometrics, and even more are planning to incorporate it into their technology toolbox. Companies that currently use voice biometrics or are considering using it should also consider incorporating the multi-beneficiary capability. This will ultimately help transform the contact center to become more 'customer-friendly' and enable the firm to boost its ability to retain its clientele – a top goal across firms serving consumers and businesses.

To determine your need for this capability, we recommend observing voice of the customer data available through IVR surveys, online surveys, etc., to reveal the frequency of customer complaints related to lack of multi-beneficiary capabilities. We also recommend analyzing the IVR and call analytics data to reveal the frequency and amount of customer contacts where individuals other than the primary account holder have contacted the business to make changes on an account. If these requests represent a significant percentage of contacts that your company can't currently address, it is a signal that you should consider incorporating multi-beneficiary capabilities within your contact center.

We recently completed a webinar discussing Aberdeen research findings on voice authentication in the contact center. During the webinar, a participant asked about how to successfully implement multi-beneficiary authentication capabilities. To listen to the related discussion and learn cutting-edge authentication best practices, we recommend you watch the recording through here.

​Omer Minkara
VP & Principal Analyst Contact Center & Customer Experience Management​​, Aberdeen 
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