Contra Costa Health Services is the largest department of Contra Costa County government, providing high quality healthcare services, community health improvement and environmental protection. Only 6% of the CCHS budget is from the County's general fund. The remaining 94% is supported by federal and state funding programs, such as Medi-Cal and Medicare as well as program grants and fees.
In a successful effort to efficiently serve callers while aiding an overwhelmed support team, CCHS has automated selected calls from their Member Services and MyChart Support Call Centers with Hyro’s Adaptive Communications Platform, streamlining 67% of calls surrounding their two most popular use cases for members to self-serve via SMS. Of those who opt to self-serve versus waiting for a live agent, 95% proceed to successfully complete their objective, such as resetting their MyChart password or selecting a new primary care physician (PCP).
<div class="tagline">The Challenge</div>
While satisfied with the quality of service and resolution rate from call center agents, Contra Costa Health Services needed to start offloading repetitive tasks from their support team, as staffing issues, turnover and burnout began to take charge in 2021. The highest bucket of calls (45%) to CCHS seemed to revolve around the same use cases, including requesting new primary care physicians (PCP) and password resets.
As CCHS started to unwrap the challenges at large, they honed in on revamping their IVR system to include more robust natural language capabilities that could decipher between caller objectives and either resolve or route them accordingly. The idea of offering those tasks that are low touch, such as requesting a new PCP or password reset, as self-service for their members started to gain traction.
For CCHS, that meant trying to find a conversational AI solution that could navigate the call center while deflecting to SMS where applicable, à la omnichannel.
<div class="tagline">The Solution</div>
Contra Costa Health Services was looking to optimize their support operations, already understaffed due to labor shortages in the US, while offering their members 24/7 services surrounding popular use cases. Despite already using Hyro as their voice and chat interface on CCHS’ website, CCHS was still fielding hundreds of member inquiries per day via their call center. IVR systems weren’t enough to stymie the overwhelming volume of repetitive calls being received by CCHS’ support teams. CCHS understood that natural language understanding would be paramount to producing more successfully automated conversations, boosting goal completion rate, and gaining actionable business insights along the way.
With Hyro, CCHS succeeded in automating their Member Services Call Center with real-time PCP changes as well as deflection of MyChart password resets via SMS, allowing CCHS support staff to focus on more complex member demands.
<div class="tagline">The Results</div>
In under 14 days, Hyro went live on Contra Costa Health Services’ call center. Within 3 months, CCHS saw a 450% increase in goal completion rate (GCR) for processing new PCP requests without allocating additional staff. For password resets, 95% of all members who opted to self-serve after dialing into CCHS’ call center, who were then sent an SMS, successfully completed their objective. Simultaneously, Hyro’s AI-powered voice assistant helped deflect 67% of incoming calls related to MyChart password resets and new PCP requests from call center staff. Dodging prolonged wait times, members resolved their queries in less than 60 seconds, improving member experience while reducing overall friction.
By redirecting members from the call center to SMS and self-service webpages, CCHS succeeded in driving increased traffic to existing online resources–a key goal in their omnichannel digital transformation strategy for 2021 and beyond. There’s more value for CCHS in having members frequent their website, built out to convert and deliver on more use cases than can be easily accessed via phone or SMS.
In the past year, Contra Costa Health Services has automated thousands of successful conversations with members, generating hundreds of PCP and password changes per week, many of which would have been missed if they’d needed to be handled by live agents. As a result, CCHS Member Services Call Center representatives are less overwhelmed by repetitive tasks and can set their sights on solving more complicated issues, bringing about the often-underrated benefit of lower agent turnover in a time of surging labor shortages.
<div class="tagline">The Future</div>
In the coming months, Contra Costa Health Services plans to offer its members total open dialogue, so that Hyro will recognize CCHS members’ goals via natural language understanding (NLU), and either automatically resolve the task by voice or direct the member to continue the task via SMS. If the query will be flagged as out of scope, or there will be an escalation detected, the call will be forwarded to live agents.
We were seeing an uptick in calls to our Member Services Call Center around services that we’d optimized online, and members just weren’t navigating there. Moving them from one channel to another was the biggest hurdle.
The ability to ‘time shift’ agents’ work from handling repetitive tasks over the phone to processing forms that were collected through SMS was key. Members didn’t need to wait on hold, and staffing didn’t need to be burdened.
By sending members from one channel to another, testing their digital literacy, we were able to collect critical data around member behavior and tweak accordingly. Knowing that members have the capacity to successfully self-serve is important for us as we move to an omnichannel approach.
We appreciate Hyro’s partnership and agility, along with their success in helping to connect between different departments at CCHS to get this live quickly and effectively.