We all know the imperativeness of customer service in the business world. Companies that highly rely upon their customers have to make sure their customers get the best experience when they are accessing their products or services. Companies do their best to help their customers in the best possible way to make their journey a smooth sail. However, every company is prone to make mistakes and that is important for the growth of the company.
When a customer faces a problem with a product or service, they seek the customer care service department of the company. The agents are responsible for noting down the customer’s concerns, orders, profile details, interactions, and pretty much everything related to them. Capturing all these details can be quite tedious at times and these menial tasks require accuracy at the same time.
- For years, experts from the BPO industry are trying to develop innovative methods to carry out customer service operations in a more agile and faster manner. The agents of customer care services try up to their best abilities to carry out these operations in the most productive way.
- The point is, these grunt tasks do not require higher levels of brainstorming and critical thinking. These tasks are simple and straightforward, however, they require constant attention and time from customer care agents.
- Ever since the experts started digging into the applications and uses of cutting-edge technologies like Artificial Intelligence, machine learning, and natural language processing, it turns out these technologies can be leveraged for carrying out call center operations. Thus, immensely fueling the productivity level of call centers.
- The technical experts and BPO experts are working together to somehow leverage AI technologies for increasing the functions and performance of call centers. Now we are seeing a tremendous coagulation between AI and customer service is greatly supplementing customer-centric businesses all over the world.
AI customer service is a highly advanced automated conversation system that can promote human-like interactions and capture the most trivial details of the customer. The prospect of AI customer service is skyrocketing in the market as it is turning out to be highly beneficial for businesses. The implementation of AI customer service can be noticed in the form of automated self-help desk systems and AI-Powered chatbot systems.
AI-Powered Virtual Assistant in Flesh
The live manifestation of AI-powered interaction systems can be seen in virtual assistant devices like Alexa and Cortana. However, incorporating this technology in contact center services is the real challenge. That is because customer-agent interactions are highly sophisticated and intense. Carrying out such interactions using AI customer service would require a large number of algorithms and case scenarios.
As we know how increasingly popular these virtual assistant devices are getting, we are slowly realizing that AI-powered customer service could be a turning point in the BPO industry. Actually, our whole ecosystem is on the verge of a revolutionary breakthrough and the technologies like AI and machine learning are going to be a critical part of this technological breakthrough. Let us unveil more on the prospects of AI-powered systems.
Reasons for Using AI-Powered Conversational Systems
Conventionally, we used phone call systems for making conversations with the customers. It was a pretty effective mode of communication, and it still remains that way.
- Then we introduced live chat systems and SMS. However, customer service requires agents to conversating with the customers.
- Agents require proper training and process knowledge to effectively understand the concerns of customers and reciprocate accordingly.
- By using communication skills and learned process knowledge, agents analyze the best solution for the customer’s concern. What if we could somehow instill these 2 things in a system and let the machine do all the work? Is it possible?
- It seems like it is possible and it is a quite lucrative way of doing it too. Having AI customer service will not only save a lot of time but will also mitigate a lot of human errors thus delivering more agile work.
The reason why AI-powered customer service has become so popular is that customers are able to resolve most of the issues using interactive voice response (IVR) and AI Chatbots. The implementation of fully fledged AI systems is still awaited however; the slight use of AI is helping customers largely.
The self-help services with automated response systems can be used for resolving 90% of customers’ service or product-related issues. Currently, AI customer service programs are used to convey the customers’ concerns and issues to respective departments and relay answers for less sophisticated customer inquiries.
Illustrating the Benefits of AI Customer Service
Time and money are the most critical resources for business, and anything that saves even one of these aspects is beneficial for business. AI customer service can both time and money for a company that is dealing with hundreds and thousands of customer inquiries daily. Until recently, the customers conversated with a live agent of the company dedicated especially to handling customer grievances, concerns, and inquiries.
An agent could assist only one customer at a time if he/she is providing assistance over call. If it is live chat, an agent can assist up to 3 - 4 customers at a time, however, AI-powered customer service can handle any number of customers at a time. AI systems can fetch, update, analyze, convey, and relay information in a fraction of a second. Hence, saving the time of customers and the company. In short, 2 birds with one stone.
Let’s understand the applications and benefits from a broader perspective:
Smooth and Uninterrupted Service
Do you know what matters most to the customers? That’s uninterrupted and timely service delivery. If everything runs smooth as silk with the orders and inquiries, customers will never feel disappointed. When you have assigned live agents for doing the job, they are prone to make blunders in capturing data, updating the data, and conveying the message clearly.
It is understandable because we are all humans and we are prone to make mistakes. When it comes to AI-based customer service, the information transferred through the systems will be accurate and reliable. Thus, there wouldn’t be a need for proofreading or cross-verifying the information. It will make the entire business operation smooth and uninterrupted.
When the repetitive tasks get automated, the contact center services are able to process information and resolve the customers’ issues faster. For a call center service, it means a lot. The entire operations of a call center service depend on how efficient their live agents are, but when the agents are replaced with AI-based automated systems, it changes everything.
Save Operational Costs
That goes without a doubt. Since you are not going to invest in agent recruitment, you won’t be spending tons of money on training them either. Furthermore, establishing a typical call center service in India costs requires extensive infrastructure.
You will need to allocate multiple systems, network systems, servers, and equipment. Not to mention, the dedicated amount required for infrastructure maintenance. You can save all of this expenditure by establishing an automated contact center powered by AI technology.
It is just a piece of software that would require little to no maintenance. Only occasional upgrades, possible bugs, or troubleshooting assistance would be needed from time to time. AI customer service will a lot of money spent while improving overall performance.
Whenever an interaction is taking place between two people, especially when it is on priority. The exchange of information takes time as both people require need time to listen, process, analyze, and then reciprocate appropriately.
With AI-generated communications, only the customer has to do all that stuff. The AI-powered conversational systems are already integrated with algorithms based on used-case scenarios so they won’t need much time to respond according to the customers’ inquiries and requests.
Plus, every conversation is documented and used as a case scenario for handling future conversations with similar agendas. Therefore, in time AI customer service will only become more agile and efficient because is a self-learning module.
Better Customer Engagement and Satisfaction
Even if AI is used in a hybrid work model, it can integrate quite harmoniously and deliver prolific results to companies. You don’t necessarily need to replace the live agents with automated systems. You can streamline the workflow by automating repetitive tasks for lifting the burden from the agent’s shoulder.
It is a known fact that AI is not a fully-fledged technology yet. Customers still prefer to speak to a live agent when it comes to extensive problems and grievances. They want actual people to conversate. These are some of the limitations of AI technology. The experts are still working on live sentiment analysis algorithms for making conversations more realistic.
However, the companies can automate other menial and grunt computer operations where human intervention is least required. This way an agent can dedicate their undivided attention to customers. Hence, it would lead to better customer engagement and satisfaction at the end of every conversation.
Hence, these were some of the prospects of artificial intelligence (AI) that we know so far. However, we are yet to experience higher prospects of AI in the future.
Currently, the technology is accessible to a handful of tech giants because of its feasibility and integration-related complications. It is not that easy to integrate AI systems into our current working models.
However, if this technology is leveraged sensibly, it has the potential to bring revolutionary breakthroughs in the BPO industry.
AI, machine learning, and natural language processing (NLP) technologies are already being used in almost all sectors of business. But when it comes to the BPO industry, AI can do wonders. Soon we all are going to experience it.