As contact centers evolve with changing customer demands and improving technology, it’s important to stay on top of the trends to provide best-in-class customer service. It’s also important to minimize attrition, drive down operating costs and increase productivity simultaneously. While this would be quite the challenge if we still had to do everything manually, today’s technology has resulted in helpful tools, such as automation. Automating your contact center can improve both customer and employee experience by streamlining and enhancing both customer interactions as well as back office operations. In 2011, Gartner predicted that by 2020, 85% of customer interactions will not involve a human agent. Automation is gaining popularity in many different implementations within the contact center and can benefit your contact center in more than one way.
More Reliable Service
Customer often remember a bad customer service experience more than a great one, so it’s important to minimize the possibilities of an unpleasant interaction to reduce churn. AI agents can be incredibly useful, both during and outside of business hours. AI agents won’t be resentful of working unusual hours and will never get angry or argue with a customer. Implementing AI to handle simple, common requests and issues can streamline the customer journey for both the customer and the agent. Not only will customers have their issues resolved more quickly, but now it’s possible to resolve these AI-handled requests outside of business hours as well. This can lead to happier customers and increased customer loyalty.
In the past, most customers have wanted to speak to a live agent over a chatbot or an IVR menu, but now, most Millennials prefer self-service options. A survey found that 72% of Millennials did not believe that a phone call was the best way to resolve an issue. They often go to self-service solutions such as FAQs, chatbots, or online forums before resorting to a phone call. With this shift to self service, it’s more important than ever to make sure that your options are intelligent and automated.
The ability to scale your contact center quickly is especially important now, with spikes in call volume affecting so many companies and industries. Implementing these new technologies will enable contact centers to scale quickly, since you no longer need to hastily find new live agents. This ensures that live agents have adequate time to train, while still fulfilling the need with chatbots and interactive FAQs that can respond instantaneously and scale nearly as quickly. In addition, AI allows for these automated solutions to learn from each interaction, improving with each and every resolved issue.
Automation will allow you to save on hiring and training, as well. Contact centers often have high turnover rates, which can cause training costs to add up quickly. Automation platforms can help drive down this cost in multiple ways. AI can provide live agents with the resources and information they need to perform successfully, as well as monitor call quality and advise agents based on customer information. In addition, chatbots can handle simple, common interactions, as well as filter and connect customers to the appropriate agents. This enables agents to stay motivated, and work on the type of interactions that fall within their skillset, improving the employee experience, while streamlining the customer journey simultaneously.
These are just a few ways automation could benefit your contact center, but it’s just as important to measure and manage these solutions. Tracking these changes and additions to quantify your return on investment can be incredibly valuable and is only possible with a comprehensive analytics tool. This can ensure that your automation platform is being implemented where it will benefit your contact center the most, and so you can achieve best-in-class customer service.