How Artificial Intelligence is Improving Call Centers

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Because of advances in technology, call centers can utilize artificial intelligence not only for metrics (call time, first call resolution, customer surveys), but to determine customer behavior. AI can let an agent know when a customer is getting frustrated or angry. This can help an agent diffuse a situation quickly and hopefully leave the customer feeling like their issue has been resolved. In turn, companies will have more sales, better overall service, and customer loyalty.

Benefits of Artificial Intelligence to Call Centers

Artificial Intelligence has enabled call centers to not only be more efficient but also significantly lower costs. There are other benefits as well:

Streamlines Processes: One of the biggest benefits of AI is that it has helped streamline many processes when it comes to customer service. It could be something as simple as creating an FAQ that points the customer in the right direction or creating prompts that lead them to the correct agent. This reduces wait times and customer frustration.

Voice Recognition: With speech recognition, the communication process has been simplified. Questions can be answered faster and customers are getting to the correct agent faster. This leads to higher first call resolution and higher customer satisfaction. For example, if a customer says “Internet” or “television”, they would be directed to an agent who is an expert in this particular product.

Improving the IVR Processes: An IVR is based on predefined rules. For example, the word sales will transfer the customer to the sales department. On the other hand, AI can understand statements instead of just one word. The idea behind AI is to stop using options such as “press 1 for sales” or “press 2 for customer service, which is followed by a queue that can frustrate customers.

Improving Customer Interactions: AI can capture a lot of data in each call. Data can be fed into analytics, which will spot trends like dissatisfaction. Managers can use this data to train agents and improve processes.

Navigating Customers Around the Company Website: Staff shortages are a common problem, particularly in larger multichannel contact centers where advisors are frequently time-stretched, and few are multiskilled. AI can be useful when tackling this problem. Virtual assistants can direct customers to the correct part of the website or FAQ. If the assistant cannot answer a request, they can route the customer to a live agent.

Predicting Customer Behavior: Artificial Intelligence (AI) can now identify trends in customer behavior, allowing agents to be more responsive to their needs. This can help retain more customers or identify up-selling opportunities. Identifying trends can also assist managers in enforcing best practices and possibly predict the consequences of certain actions. Once those trends are identified, companies can

Identifying Call Types: When customers call in, AI can be used to help identify the type of request. This enables the customer to be passed on the relevant channel. Once the call is received by the agent, AI can also provide the agent with useful background information and the nature of their inquiry. This allows the agent to not only provide great customer service but get through the call quickly and efficiently.

In short, the future success for companies will depend on how quickly they can attend to their customers’ needs and investing more in their call center agents, who are constantly finding more ways to make sure customers are happy.

Automating Responses to Customer Complaints: One of the biggest challenges companies face today is how to more effectively answer customer complaints. AI can manage customer’s letters, emails, and web forms. After going through each inquiry, only the pertinent details are pulled and sent to a manager. The manager can then distribute each complaint to their agents or an automated response can be sent to the customer. Once the complaint is resolved, it can then be uploaded into a case management system.

Will Artificial Intelligence Replace Human Interaction?

Technology will never completely replace a human. There is a certain amount of trust in talking to a person when contacting a company. A machine is impersonal and creates a disconnect between the customer and the company.  However, call centers are using AI to help them improve the customer experience.

Call centers have become more efficient thanks to Artificial Intelligence, and there is little doubt that artificial intelligence will play continue to play a large role in call centers. Even with all of the advancements in machine learning, it can never replace the compassion and concern that a live person will have when assisting a customer.

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