Interactions and Arise Virtual Solutions Partner on Virtual Assistant

Interactions, a provider of speech and natural language technology, and Arise Virtual Solutions, a provider of work-from-home agent business process outsourcing (BPO) services, have partnered to expand the delivery of conversational virtual assistant solutions for customer care.

Arise will bring Interactions' virtual assistant solutions to its customers and combine Interactions' Adaptive Understanding technology with its own virtual customer care platform.

Interactions solutions are based on the company's patented Adaptive Understanding technology, which blends artificial and human intelligence to deliver responsive, highly conversational customer interactions.

The combined offering will enable consumers to accomplish tasks in self-service or transition to a live agent when human interaction is needed. That will provide companies "opportunities for offering better customer care," says Jane Price, vice president of marketing at interactions.

 In this partner model, Arise’s platform will enable the Human Assisted Understanding and act as part of the machine learning loop within the application.

Mike Iacobucci, CEO of Interactions, points out that this is a new form of selling for Interactions. "Up to this point, Interactions has been selling direct to the enterprise," he says. "Over the last year or so, we've reorganized the software in our platform to open it up to companies like Arise."

"Arise brings a unique capability as our partner. Their success as a technology company in the customer care market as both a BPO and customer care pioneer highlights the company's commitment to bringing practical, and innovative options to enterprises," Iacobucci adds. "Arise is the perfect partner for us as we work hand-in-hand to eliminate our clients’ ongoing frustration with dated IVR technology."

Arise's unique ability to schedule in 30-minute increments enables the combined solution to quickly scale to accommodate rapid increases in call volume.

"Partnering with Interactions opens new doors for Arise as it offers us the ability to combine the latest advances in customer care technology with a human touch, further setting Arise apart from its competitors when it comes to quality customer care," said John Meyer, CEO of Arise, in a statement. "Interactions' offerings enables us to expand our portfolio by providing greater conversational self-service options while call centers using our platform handle those calls that are better suited for live agents, either due to complexity or business practices."

Meyer added: "This partnership is an ideal alternative for businesses looking to bring offshore customer care back on-shore, by providing both higher quality and lower cost."

Iacobucci says Arise benefits in another way: "Arise is expanding their labor force, and adding this to their platform makes a lot of sense for them," he states.

The partnership also opens up new opportunities for Interactions. "2015 was a banner year for us," Iacobucci says. "We're seeing broad customer adoption of intelligent assistants for customer service."