How have our needs changed over time? We expect service and answers every second of the day, we want them fast and correct. But how should you prepare your organization for the new demands? AI is at the core of the digital transformation that is improving the economics and capabilities of all aspects of business, including customer service. AI can help complete repetitive, predictable tasks — or take over those tasks completely — and interact with customers autonomously to add value. It has been found in a study that 4 of 10 contact center decision-makers are exploring AI technologies to differentiate their service. AI won’t replace humans entirely, rather it will enhance skills by taking over routine tasks like collecting and reporting information, letting agents handle customer interactions requiring deeper insight and analysis. Such interactions can only be made if we have a lot of data and also have a good quality of that content. A big challenge will be to secure that you have the content for the assistant and that you train your new resource.
Knowing the needs of customers is a prerequisite for offering the best products and services to the customers, is critically important to stay relevant and maintain a competitive position. It is, therefore, no surprise that AI efforts with this aim are a high priority. Furthermore, there is a tendency for companies in some industries to move from being B2B-focused to engaging more with end-users through various digitally-enabled services, for example, AI. This is a new scary situation and you want to do this right the first time. The Customer expects you to know what it wants.
We can predict that the prosumer may be satisfied with predictable tasks and questions to get the fastest possible help. Professional customers would need more advanced AI that requires human expertise and knowledge. We also need more insight and data to be able to help professionals with automated solutions. This is why you need to think about how your AI should work and what it will do. It can´t do everything. It is better to do somethings and do them really well.
Contact center technologies are increasingly using AI to:
› Deliver premium experience. Nearly half of consumers already engage in automated conversations with intelligent assistants like Alexa, Siri, and Cortana. Intelligent agents for customer service range from single-purpose chatbots — like the one KLM uses to communicate booking confirmations — at the low end of the complexity scale to virtual agents that embed deep learning at the high end. Another example is SAS that Sogeti helped with their new FAQ site, www.sas.se/ask
AI will delight customers by making these conversations natural and effective, anticipating needs based on context, preferences, and prior queries, delivering advice, resolutions, alerts, and offers, and getting smarter over time.
› Smarter operations AI will extract useful information from voice and digital conversations, images, and machine-to-machine communications to quickly surface trends in issues and customer sentiment that may affect customer retention and loyalty.
AI also has potential in scheduling maintenance appointments, pushing fixes to connected devices, and making field operations more efficient — for example, by restocking parts based on need or intelligently optimizing field resources to provide on-demand service.
› Find new revenue streams and business models AI finds patterns in large data sets that reveal new insights that companies can use to create completely new services for customers. Machine learning algorithms used for business and customer intelligence find answers to questions that humans didn’t even know to ask.
To integrate AI, you need to have an internal and external team of expert product people and engineers that know its applications and are working very closely with the frontline teams that are actually delivering services.
Embrace the speed of change. Think carefully about the ways in which traditional operating models can be accelerated by AI and digital solutions. Make your talents faster, give them the tools they need… Stimulate them to move from function to function to understand the more agile career model. Get inspiration and expert knowledge from partners or others in your area of business and learn from their mistakes.