Silver State Schools Credit Union Transforms Contact Center with Seamless Blend of AI Automation and Personalized Human Support

Saves $41K+ per month, reduces Average Wait Time by 59%

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Challenge
Challenge
Solution
Solution
Challenge
digital-first service
The shift from in-branch to phone interactions has driven up call volumes and created staffing challenges. Routine, repetitive calls often monopolize reps time while driving up the Average Wait Time (AWT).
Solution
Glia’s Phone GVA, integrated with Glia Call Center, is able to fully contain 1 out of every 3 calls without requiring human support, freeing SSSCU’s service reps for more complex issues and those that require a more personalized touch. With Phone GVA the AWT is down 59%.
Challenge
digital-first service
Legacy touch-tone IVR was frustrating members and resulted in many calls routed to the wrong queues. SSSCU wanted an automated phone self-service solution that maintains a connected, personalized member experience—without linear expansion in additional headcount and budget.
Solution
As an entry point, Phone GVA answers many questions, but also quickly connects members with the best service expert within SSSCU to guide them and provide quick resolution. SSSCU has been able to manage increases in call volumes without significantly adding to the service staff. This has resulted in strong ROI with an estimated savings of $41,600 per month.
Challenge
digital-first service
SSSCU wanted a flexible interaction platform that could handle today’s high call volumes, meet the growing member base opting for on-screen digital service and evolve to meet member expectations as they evolve in the future.
Solution
The Glia Interaction Platform integrates GCC, Phone GVA and Digital Customer Service (DCS) on one platform, allowing SSSCU to assess needs in real-time, iterate and provide the right service mix as member expectations shift.
Results

$41,600

Estimated ROI per Month

33%

Phone GVA Containment

↓59%

Reduction of Average Wait Time

2 m 11 s

Reduction of Average Handle Time

<100 days

Time to Deployment
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$1.2B in assets under management
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60,000 members
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10 Branches

Excellent Member Service for a New Era

Silver State Schools Credit Union (SSSCU) was founded in 1951 with a vision to deliver “excellent member service and financial solutions for life.” More than 70 years later, this remains the credit union’s core mission today, serving a growing community across the greater Las Vegas valley.

Over the past several years, SSSCU has experienced an accelerated shift from branch service to phone support, driving significant growth in call volume. This led the credit union to reevaluate its call center and explore new ways to handle the steady increase. Call center staffing, particularly the ability to scale the service team and provide on-going training, was a primary consideration.

At the same time, SSSCU has seen a growing demand for digital-first options, though not yet enough to meaningfully offset call volumes or lower average wait times for members who prefer to call in. Planning for the future, the credit union wanted a unified solution that operated seamlessly across the call center and digital service to accommodate member preferences as they evolve. SSSCU’s digital chat application was not integrated with its legacy call center, creating a disparate system that was cumbersome to manage.

“Our members have been gravitating more toward remote service options, yet we saw that our channels were disjointed. Digital solutions were bolted onto the call center, not baked in,” said Ariana Hites, VP of Digital and Payment Services for SSSCU. “We realized we needed a new approach that would provide a seamless experience for all members, including those who prefer to call in and those who want to interact digitally.”

Rather than pursuing typical call deflection strategies that push members to other channels, the SSSCU team sought ways to increase efficiency to help reduce wait times and improve the member experience. The credit union began assessing automation with Intelligent Virtual Agents (IVAs) that could greet callers, handle routine interactions and seamlessly route more complex issues to SSSCUs live service experts.

The Concierge Service Model

SSSCU was looking for a single solution that could enable seamless member experiences in any channel and support its concierge service approach with a combination of AI and human servicing. Just as a service representative greets members in a branch and directs them to appropriate experts, such as a loan officer, SSSCU wanted a managed approach to guide callers and accelerate resolution. This required an integrated platform, but most vendors had either a good call center offering or an IVA product or a digital-first solution, but not all three.

Glia stood out based on its ChannelLess architecture that unified all member interactions on a single platform with strong, proven solutions for all three—the call center, an AI-driven phone virtual assistant and digital-first solutions. The seamless member experience that the Glia Interaction Platform provided was a strong fit for SSSCU’s digital transformation to provide frictionless member service. The single platform proved easy to implement and manage, delivering results quickly.

“Silver State Schools Credit Union provides a highly personalized member experience, based on the concierge service model. We didn’t want to phase in new solutions one at a time and force members to relearn how to interact with us over and over. Glia’s unified Interaction Platform gave us a comprehensive interaction solution that allowed us to digitally transform all at once, maintain high-touch service, and meet member expectations for seamless experiences,” said Ben Christensen, CIO for Silver State Schools Credit Union.
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No Compromise: Efficiency and a Personalized Member Experience

SSSCU deployed the Glia Interaction Platform, including Glia Call Center (GCC), Phone Glia Virtual Assistant (Phone GVA) and Digital Customer Service (DCS) together as part of one launch. In addition to offering members a single step to improved service, implementing the full interaction suite at once created new efficiencies, especially in training the service team one time, on a single platform for all interactions.

19,000+
calls handled per month with GCC & Phone GVA
33%
of calls contained without the need for a human agent with Phone GVA
↓59%
reduction in Average Wait Time
↓2+
minute reduction in Average Handle Time
$41,600
cost savings per month

Results have been impressive. SSSCU now handles more than 19,000 calls per month with GCC, a complete cloud call center solution built for financial institutions. GCC is highly scalable to handle further increases in call volumes, is easy to manage and is fully integrated with digital-first options. As a result, it provides deeper member context than legacy call centers and can connect off-screen phone calls with on-screen experiences within the same uninterrupted interaction. 

It all comes together with Glia’s turnkey AI Virtual Assistant for dial-up telephone, its Phone GVA. This serves as the entry point to the contact center, greeting callers, answering frequently asked questions and routing more complex queries to the right service queues. As part of SSSCU’s concierge service approach, it has developed dedicated interaction queues that quickly match a member exploring an auto loan, for example, with a lending specialist who can provide in-depth advice and a personalized experience.

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The cornerstone to SSSCU’s success was the seamless collaboration between the AI assistant (Phone GVA) and the human representatives over the phone, providing members with both intelligent automation and high-touch human service. The credit union knew that while AI could have a big impact by automating routine calls, a lot of high-value interactions would still go to service reps.  Indeed this hands-on, personal service is a core part of SSSCUs promise to its members. The Phone GVA offered as part of a unified solution with GCC was the right fit, blending AI and human servicing in a single platform. The Phone GVA answers simpler questions and transfers more complex queries to human service reps. Critically, when this transfer from AI to human rep happens, the Phone GVA passes on the full transcript of the conversation. This allows a service rep to quickly understand what a member needs and offer immediate guidance, accelerating resolution. A loan officer, for example, can see from the transcript that a member is exploring personal loans and can start off with options appropriate for that member.

This combination of AI and high touch human servicing within a single platform is quickly delivering considerable value for SSSCU. The Phone GVA is containing 33% of calls without requiring a live human representative. By answering routine questions quickly, the Phone GVA has reduced the average phone wait time by 59% and trimmed 2 minutes and 10 seconds from the average handle time. This has resulted in impressive ROI, with an estimated $41,600 in savings per month.

Glia’s DCS module—part of the Glia Interaction Platform solution—provides SSSCU with digital-first member services, including chat, on-screen voice and video as well as CoBrowsing to meet the growing demand for online collaboration. As an education-focused credit union, SSSCU sees itself as more than a financial partner, putting a great emphasis on teaching fiscal literacy and wellness. CoBrowsing in particular has helped the credit union guide members to learn financial fitness.

Partnering for Continuous Improvement

Deploying the Glia Interaction Platform was an inflection point for SSSCU, providing a solution that elevates member service today and into the future to meet expectations as they shift. The credit union is exploring opportunities with video to further personalize service, for example.

To enable ongoing success and help the credit union continuously optimize their member interaction solution, Glia has partnered with SSSCU from initial onboarding and deployment to maintaining a close relationship with regular meetings. Glia’s Whiteglove service aligns to SSSCU’s iterative approach to continuously enhance the member experience and ensure full value realization. From the beginning, Glia listened to SSSCU’s goals, jointly created a plan with solid KPIs and teamed closely with the credit union’s IT and service teams.

“Financial services is essentially a commodity at this point. It’s the member experience that is the differentiator. We are constantly looking for ways to understand member lifestyles and deliver service that matches their expectations. That means smoothing out bumps along the way and continually iterating how to solve member problems over and over. What has been great about the Glia partnership is that we have both a flexible, single-platform product that helps us evolve and a vendor committed to our success,” said Christensen.

The launch of the Glia Interaction Platform with GCC, Phone GVA and DCS all at once was smooth, taking less than 100 days to complete. Training was straightforward, allowing the team to learn one system for all interactions. This has provided service efficiencies as well over SSSCU’s previous solution that had reps toggling between multiple systems.

With all interactions unified on the Glia Interaction Platform, the SSSCU team is able to easily assess data across all channels, identify emerging trends, and quickly align to member expectations as they evolve. This has been critical to the team’s iterative approach and focus on continuous improvement.

Based on data-driven metrics, the team continues to enhance the solution. For example, SSSCU has evolved the Phone GVA greeting to offer more personalized self-service and continues to evaluate ways to further improve the experience. 

“Iterating responses for Phone GVA has been very easy within the GVAs self-serve content management tool, allowing us to quickly adjust and optimize the experience. A big lesson from the initial launch is that how we word or phrase responses matter. We continue to assess, learn and make the chatbot even more effective,” said Heidi Muenchow, Digital Solutions Manager at Silver State Schools Credit Union.

Perhaps this iterative approach and SSSCU’s obsession on delivering the best member experience is why it has earned a Best of Las Vegas Gold Award by Las Vegas Review-Journal readers for a 5th consecutive year.

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