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What to expect from NICE Interactions 2024

The NICE user event, Interactions, will be held next week in Las Vegas. This is NICE’s primary US-based user event, and its goal is to educate the audience on the industry's vision and where NICE is taking its products. For the Interactions attendees, here are five things to watch.

 

The Evolution of CCaaS to a Customer Experience (CX) Platform

One of my key takeaways from Enterprise Connect 2024 was that CCaaS is dead, or at least should be. Currently, investor sentiment on the entire CCaaS industry is negative, as that audience believes AI will displace agents and shrink the total addressable market (TAM), i.e. the revenue opportunity of the whole market. The investors are partially correct, as it’s true that AI will replace a significant portion of inbound calls, such as password resets and order status checks.

What’s not well understood is that many businesses are now giving contact center seats to other CX-facing roles like customer success, sales, marketing, and account managers. This broader CX audience has the potential to double the current CCaaS TAM but requires evolving from CCaaS to CX platform.

The tagline for the NICE event is “CX AI realized,” so there may be a significant amount of information on how customers can shift from CCaaS to a CX platform.

 

CX AI Adoption

Over the past year, I've had the privilege of attending numerous contact center-related events, all of which have been rich in vision but somewhat lacking in real-world deployments. However, the landscape is shifting, and the interest in leveraging AI in the contact center is palpable. Many customers I've spoken to are in the exploratory phase, keen to implement AI solutions once they feel confident in their practicality and effectiveness.

NICE was a pioneer in both the shift to CX and AI. Many vendors partner in quality management, workforce optimization, and others, but most of that is home-grown for NICE, giving them a broader set of CX data than most of its peers. Also, it was early out of the blocks with AI, and its Enlighten AI suite is the most mature in the contact center industry. This should translate to real-world adoption, and I’m looking forward to learning about those at Interactions.

 

Customer Stories

One of the reasons I love going to user events is they are filled with customers. Generally, if I have a choice of technical sessions versus a customer one, I’ll always defer to the latter as it helps me understand customer transformation and the ROI realized. Some of the more compelling sessions I have identified are:

  • Breaking Silos and Focusing on the User: Revolutionizing Hyatt’s CXone Performance Management
  • Enlighten Autopilot: Sony’s Journey to Intelligent Self-Service with Conversational AI
  • Disney’s Magical Performance Management
  • Helping Communities Thrive: How United Way CT Builds Resilience with CXone
  • Transforming Quality into Voice Intelligence at Realtor.com

These are all brands renowned for focusing on customers, so it will be interesting to hear how they think about the next wave of CX.

 

The Future of AI

Regarding AI in CX, we are just scratching the surface of what’s possible. New channels are coming to be mixed with other data sources, which opens the door for brands to redefine how they deal with customers. Reactive becomes proactive, generic becomes personalized, and things that frustrate now can be used to delight. Artificial intelligence will change the customer experience world in ways we can’t even begin to imagine.

Given NICE is the vendor furthest on the visionary scale in the Gartner MQ, I expect a heavy dose of vision for the future of the intersection of AI and CX.

 

Barak Eilam’s US farewall

Earlier this year, Barak Eilam announced that he would step down as NICE's CEO at the year's end. He has been at the company for 25 years and in his current role for 10 years. It’s fair to say that in his time at NICE, he has seen everything there is to see in the world of contact centers and CX. Given the timing, this will be his last U.S. Interactions keynote, and I’m looking forward to hearing how he addresses the audience and any words of wisdom he imparts as his time as the captain of the starship NICE winds down.

Under his leadership, NICE was one of the leading forces in driving the contact center to the cloud and is now doing the same with AI.