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A Contact Center's Foundation Starts with AI

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An AI chatbot helping a customer
Image: tippapatt - stock.adobe.com
If people are the backbone of contact centers, then artificial intelligence (AI) would be the foundation — and for good reason. AI is driving the evolution of customer service and customer experience, redefining how callers are served and how agents serve them. The technology assists agents with information while enhancing their work every step of the way. As AI evolves and grows more capable of delivering results that exceed expectations, the changes detailed below will only become more pronounced.
 
AI Will Redefine the Customer Experience
Customer service has always been a part of an enterprise’s equation for success, and now, AI has entered the mix and brought intelligence to the customer experience. Instead of relying on metadata alone to improve the customer experience, AI will allow organizations to make decisions based on the conversation itself. This is an important evolution in the way call centers provide service to those who need it most.
 
Better still, AI will inform human employees and more intuitively guide their responses by analyzing the caller’s sentiment. That way, when a negative sentiment is detected, managers can be alerted, listen to a recording of the call, and respond accordingly, providing feedback and/or training to employees. Call center teams will then be better prepared to handle similar situations in the future and ultimately deliver a more refined customer experience.
 
AI Enhances the Great Work Agents Already Do
Few people may realize the hard work that goes into customer service, particularly the wealth of knowledge that callers expect every agent to possess. As a customer with a question or concern, it’s easy to forget that no one is all-knowing. That said, customer agents still do the best they can and try to come up with answers and solutions as much as possible.
 
AI can greatly help in this regard. For example, if a customer has an uncommon issue about a product or service, the agent may not immediately know the answer. AI, on the other hand, can draw upon the knowledge of the entire customer service team. Having recorded and noted similar issues previously, AI can quickly pull up a solution for the agent to relay or offer to transfer the call to someone who can resolve the problem.
 
Humans Will (and Should Always) Remain Front and Center
Concerns surrounding the rise of AI and its impact on the job market have been raised, but the reality is not so bleak. Despite fears that AI will replace various jobs in the future, it will be many years — possibly decades — before AI can match the capabilities of humans.
 
Even when that day comes, people will still provide a unique advantage: They can connect more naturally with others and therefore are valuable assets for client/customer-facing businesses. These connections will not diminish in an increasingly AI-infused world.
 
Intelligent Communications for Superior Customer Experiences
AI is the technology contact centers have been waiting for, offering an unprecedented level of intelligence to assist agents and enhance the customer experience. By providing suggestions on how to resolve problems and analyzing calls for sentiment, AI allows customer agents to do what they do best — and better than ever before. AI will do even more going forward, bringing about several advances, including real-time voice transcription. These and other innovations will shape the industry's future and allow businesses to provide their customers with the best experience possible.

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