Everywhere you look, someone is touting the benefits of artificial intelligence (AI) — its utility, its impact, its future. Self-driving cars for the masses still might be years away, but the AI revolution in customer service is happening right now — and for good reason.
Contact centers possess unique characteristics that make them perfect early adopters of AI solutions.
- Customer and agent interactions generate mountains of data.
- Even small improvements to average handle time, FCR and Net Promoter Score (NPS) have a huge impact on a company’s bottom line.
- Employees need help; being a contact center agent is a tough job and the pandemic has only made it more difficult with staffing shortages and remote onboarding.
- Many legacy collaboration technologies need an upgrade to match requirements of modern call centers.
- Many call centers still use sticky notes, scripts and manual processes, instead of technology for some tasks.
New AI technology won’t fix all your issues overnight; you must view it as a long-term strategy. Small improvements can go a long way, so take it one use case or metric at a time. AI solutions like chatbots have already become essential to an optimized customer support strategy. For the most difficult problems, however, customers still pick up the phone.
Why You Should Prioritize AI for Voice
Voice is by far the most popular and powerful medium for customer support. Forty-three percent of consumers prefer voice, even when they have other options. While self-service has its appeal, it takes time and effort. Calling customer service often is easier than chatting, texting or weeding through a pile of FAQs. Sometimes people just want someone else to solve their problems while they drive, work, make dinner or exercise.
Traditionally, contact centers have two options when managing an uptick in voice interactions: Settle for long hold times at the expense of lower customer satisfaction or hire more call center agents and increase costs. Now there’s a third option: AI.
Recent advancements in real-time transcription have made it easy to feed customer questions into AI engines, but that’s only half the battle. You have to find the answers — call-in questions are the toughest. Your contact center AI can’t afford to recommend irrelevant, outdated or wrong answers. Complex answers need quality control and a contact center agent. So, what’s the next step into your AI future?
Equip Agents with AI and Knowledge
The AI-voice support challenge is as old as computing itself: garbage in, garbage out. While FAQs might be sufficient to power a simple chatbot, open-ended voice inquiries require much better judgment and knowledge. A good solution is to use AI to leverage the judgment your call center agents already have and the knowledge you’ve already compiled.
Good customer service depends on good answers. The Shelf knowledge management platform, integrated in the Genesys Cloud CX™ platform, listens for questions in voice transcripts, chat, search and forms, and uses Merlin AI to search your entire knowledge base in real time to find the best possible answers.
The AI also helps improve answers over time. Contact center agent and customer feedback, content engagement, customer interactions, and each call resolution tell the technology which answers are working — and which ones aren’t. It then analyzes this feedback to develop recommendations for closing the gap between questions and answers.
Better Customer and Employee Experiences
Shelf Agent Assist for Voice can improve both the customer and employee experience. Agents won’t have to search for answers to customer questions and call times are reduced. It also allows companies to modernize their call centers into hybrid environments that combine agents and AI. And because Shelf Agent Assist for Voice uses existing investments in call center and knowledge infrastructure, companies can expect measurable ROI.
Check out the webinar “Modernize Your Contact Center with Agent Assist for Voice” to learn more. And visit Shelf in the Genesys AppFoundry® Marketplace.