October 29, 2003

Speech Enabling Technology

Credit Union Approves over $43 Million in Member Loans Using Speech-Enabled Instant Loan Application

October 29, 2003 08:02

America First Credit Union Approves over $43 Million in Member Loans Using Speech-Enabled Instant Loan Application Powered by ScanSoft
ScanSoft Recognizes Credit Union with Milestone Achievement Award for Improved Member Self-Service

PEABODY, Mass., Oct 29, 2003 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- ScanSoft, Inc. (Nasdaq: SSFT), the leading supplier of speech and imaging solutions, today announced it has recognized America First Credit Union (AFCU), the largest credit union in Utah, with a Milestone Achievement Award for its SpeechAccess(TM) Instant Loan application, which allows members to apply and be instantly approved for a variety of loans over the phone. In addition to improving member self-service options, the speech system has processed more than 11,500 applications and approved $43 million in loans since it was deployed one year ago. The Milestone Achievement Award recognizes companies who have reached a customer service milestone with their speech service.

"Our experience with speech technology has greatly exceeded our initial expectations," stated Rich Syme, vice president of automated services at AFCU. "To date, we have used ScanSoft's speech technology to approve nearly 6,000 loan applications. Members continue to embrace the speech system and are using it rather than waiting to talk to a loan officer. As a result, we've realized significant savings and are evaluating other areas in our business where speech can be applied." AFCU has over $2.7 billion in assets and serves 342,760 members.

The SpeechAccess Instant Loan application allows members to apply for loans and use a calculator to adjust the amount, term, and payment structure to achieve the desired result. The speech system then collects the remaining information, including employment status, income, and residence information. SpeechAccess has eliminated on-hold times for 26% of members who prefer to use the system rather than wait on hold for a loan officer. AFCU members can use the speech system to apply for the following loans:

-- New or used auto

-- Checking card

-- Home equity loans

-- Personal loans

-- Recreational vehicle

-- Visa(R) credit cards

"With more than 11,500 applications processed and $43 million in loans approved using speech, AFCU has clearly reached a milestone with speech," said Steve Chambers, senior vice president and general manager of Network Speech Solutions at ScanSoft. "AFCU's commitment to improving member services and adoption of speech technology distinguishes them as a technology leader in the credit union industry."

About America First Credit Union

America First Credit Union (AFCU) is a non-profit organization that serves its 342,760 members as a financial cooperative. As expressed in the mission statement, America First's primary goal is "...to provide personal financial services of a superior quality to the members/owners, our chief concern being their financial well-being." Headquartered in Ogden, Utah, with 47 locations across the Wasatch Front and one in Mesquite, Nevada, America First is the largest credit union in the state. Founded in 1939 at Fort Douglas, Utah, with original assets of $100, AFCU now has assets of over $2.7 billion. AFCU employs 1,115 people. America First Credit Union has established itself as a leader among financial institutions in Utah, and across the nation, in finding ways to use cutting-edge technology to increase service to its members.

About ScanSoft(R) Network Speech Solutions

ScanSoft Network Speech Solutions is the global leader in advanced network speech technologies and professional services. Enterprise and telecommunications organizations around the world such as Aetna, Bank of America and Qantas Airways leverage the power and innovation of the SpeechWorks(R) Suite of Network Speech Solutions to redefine the way they exchange vital information with customers and employees over the telephone. With a global sales and engineering presence, ScanSoft is uniquely positioned to help companies create and implement sophisticated speech solutions that deliver proven economic benefits and the highest levels of caller satisfaction. For more information, visit http://www.scansoft.com/network/.

About ScanSoft, Inc.

ScanSoft, Inc. (Nasdaq: SSFT) is the leading supplier of speech and imaging solutions that are used to automate a wide range of manual processes - saving time, increasing worker productivity and improving customer service. For more information regarding ScanSoft products and technologies, please visit www.ScanSoft.com.

ScanSoft and the ScanSoft logo, are registered trademarks or trademarks of ScanSoft, Inc. in the United States and other countries. All other company or product names may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

SOURCE: ScanSoft, Inc.

ScanSoft, Inc.
Marie Ruzzo, 617-428-4444
[email protected]
America First Credit Union
Keicha Chapman, 801-778-8606
[email protected]

Posted by Craig at October 29, 2003 04:24 PM