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ThoughtSpot, VoiceBase partner to provide complementary tools
The complementary capabilities of ThoughtSpot's BI platform and VoiceBase's speech analytics tools can now be combined due to a new strategic partnership between the vendors.
ThoughtSpot and VoiceBase revealed a strategic partnership on Tuesday that aims to aid customers of each vendor by providing them with the other's capabilities.
VoiceBase is a speech analytics vendor. Its platform uses augmented intelligence and machine learning, including its own query language that responds to natural language processing to derive insights from data mined from call centers and other communications with customers. ThoughtSpot is a business intelligence vendor using AI and machine learning to search data to uncover insights.
From ThoughtSpot's perspective, the new partnership will enable users who have direct customer contact to access voice data.
The vendor has a history of developing partnerships to expand the capabilities of its platform beyond its own innovations, and before its partnership with VoiceBase, ThoughtSpot could access structured content in relational databases but not the semistructured and unstructured data of phone calls and text exchanges.
"This data that's been dark before is now accessible to ThoughtSpot in an open format," said Cindi Howson, ThoughtSpot's chief data strategy officer. "The beauty of it is we can take calls that are happening maybe in the call center and combine it with other data that our largest customers have already been analyzing."
Net promoter scores, sales data or how data relates to calls to a call center are some examples Howson gave of the new kinds of data now available to ThoughtSpot.
VoiceBase users, conversely, will now be able to combine their voice data with a search-based BI tool to more easily make data-driven decisions. VoiceBase does not offer a data visualization layer on top of its data preparation.
"At a high level, the benefit to our customers is being able to leverage ThoughtSpot as a tool to surface that dark data that's within voice in order to be a more data-driven company," said Jay Blazensky, VoiceBase's co-founder and chief revenue officer.
Regarding the decision not to develop its own proprietary visualization layer, he added that VoiceBase did not want that feature to become the focal point when trying to attract new customers. In addition, he said that VoiceBase wanted to have an open architecture rather than one that kept data from being shared.
"We have the opposite mentality," Blazensky said. "If you can redact sensitive information from this content, then you can put this data at the fingertips of analysts throughout the enterprise that are familiar with a tool like ThoughtSpot."
Mike Leone, senior analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group, said that the vendors offer complementary tools and customers of each should benefit from the new capabilities.
Mike LeoneSenior analyst, Enterprise Strategy Group
"The partnership makes great sense for both companies," Leone said. "As organizations look to leverage more unstructured data for analytics, 'voice' is a goldmine. VoiceBase will enable ThoughtSpot to deliver even greater value by simplifying the incorporation of a valuable new dataset rich in potential insight."
Speech analytics, Leone continued, is a natural next step for data-driven enterprises that rely on sales and customer experience to help drive their business.
"And for VoiceBase, I would be shocked if there was significant, if any, customer overlap with ThoughtSpot, so it's greener pastures for them," Leone said.
From a timing standpoint, with more people working remotely than ever due to COVID-19 and more conversations taking place electronically than ever, more voice data is being mined than ever before.
Nevertheless, ThoughtSpot's move to partner with VoiceBase now about four months after many organizations closed their physical doors and began remote operations is a coincidence, according to Howson. Instead, she said, it was driven by customers wanting to access voice data and take action based on that data even before the pandemic.
However, Howson said COVID-19 provides new use cases for the combined technologies.
Telehealth, for example, is one new application given the surge in online healthcare appointments compared with how few were conducted electronically just a short time ago.
While the partnership between ThoughtSpot and VoiceBase stands to quickly benefit each's respective customers, beyond platform integrations the vendors might go the next step and work together to develop new products.
Blazensky said that he's seen custom-built applications VoiceBase and ThoughtSpot could combine forces to make more powerful, while Howson noted that rather than add capabilities through acquisitions ThoughtSpot frequently works with its deep array of partners on new innovations.
"It's such a good technology partnership because the thing that ThoughtSpot values is co-innovation with our customers and with our partners," she said.