Artificial Intelligence (AI) and the use of chatbots is a rage that’s promising to transform many traditional functions across industries as well as vastly improve customer experience. Among the many applications of AI, contact center automation has garnered attention for the value it delivers to the enterprises. Like most evolving technologies, there’s hype and fear associated with AI-inspired contact center automation, which goes beyond just replacement of human agents with talking machines. Decision-makers need to steer clear of the doubts related to deployed outcomes and unrealistic expectations before they take the plunge.
Customer service executives are spoilt with choices: between self-service options and live agents, the onus of providing a good customer experience is a dicey problem. The self-service possibilities come with their set of restrictions and it’s unaffordable to have live agents answer every little query. AI couldn’t have come at a better time for the contact center business.
Gartner bets that AI and chatbots are going to take care of all tier-one tasks related to customer interactions by 2020 which will ultimately foster better customer experiences and enable employees to shift their focus to complex and more important tasks.
Challenges in the way of contact centers
Most customer service centers and contact centers have a big problem staring them — there is a humongous lot of data to sort through. The number of call recordings in a contact center per day runs into thousands of lines. While it’s a great idea to listen to a call to gain business insights, this method is unrealistic as well as impractical. Besides improving their overall performance, companies wish to know the following:
1. The opinion and complaints of customers regarding the durability of a new product.
2. The status of refunds after making modifications in the phone script.
Impact of chatbot contact centers on customer experience
As long as the queries are simple, bots can satisfy them more quickly than humans, though the tone of customers is better perceived by a live person at the other end. Hence, even as natural language processing (NLP) is being incorporated, it’s essential to keep both bots and humans for customer interactions. Bots can provide quick fixes and as soon as things start to get complex for the bot, human staff can take over.
How this relates to overall customer care
Contact center staff shouldn’t fear the working of chatbots. Instead, they should focus on how they can work in amalgamation with AI chatbots to improve on customer experience. Users expect chatbots to be precise. Friendliness and expert answers are far from their expectations. Chatbots are already available 24×7. When things start to get out of control and expert advice is required with a friendly attitude, humans can step in.
Bots can start by handling the initial customer conversation. Before passing the query to an agent, the bot can acquire relevant information about the customer. This reduces the waiting time and makes customers feel valued and important. If the doubt is simple, the bot can handle on its own. If it requires human intervention, the bot can forward it to the concerned authority based on the information received by a bot.
Contact center transformation through AI & chatbots
Increased automation and the greater diversity of customer contact channels will complicate, not simplify, the job of contact center agents. Hence, enterprises need to anticipate the looming crisis and start retooling their contact center architecture to be cognitive. In the next 10 years, cognitive contact centers will incorporate AI to personalize agent/customer matching, augment agent capabilities, and offload management tasks, allowing firms to focus more on strategy.
Conversational AI is a key component to enhance the customer experience and reduce the operational cost for contact centers. Cognitive contact centers will eliminate touchpoint silos by going channel-less
- Agent Assistant: Helping live agents with the proper intents and relevant data to transform a call into action with intelligent decision
- Agility: Ensure agility with faster response times, using unlimited computing power
- Higher Customer Satisfaction: Improve the NPS score owing to better customer engagement and interaction
- Operational Efficiencies: Reduces overall contact center costs through increased use of self-service and improved agent utilization
- Understands Context: Ability to carry over context across conversations and ability to switch contexts to other tasks
- Handle Multiple Queries: Ability to handle tasks across multiple skills without any new learning cycle
- Omni-channel: Can provide the context of the interaction across every communication channel, ensuring consistent experiences across the channel
Sooner or later, every company will need to employ a fleet of customer service chatbots. This way, organizations can ensure work is done around the clock, reduce human error and slash expenses. By using chatbots in your customer relationship management (CRM) strategy, you can be certain that customers are assisted efficiently and competently.
Keep your communication with your customers strong and personal and most importantly, engage with them in THEIR channel of choice. You can easily do this using the hi.guru conversational platform and ultimately enhance customer experience by using responsive chatbots and other tools. It all starts by consolidating your existing communication channels into one and ensuring a better response time, a better resolution and a happier customer.