Right from early call-routing systems, to interactive voice response (IVR) systems are widely used by call centers today. Call centers have always led the way in the adoption of technological innovation. Now, AI is the latest innovation being adopted by call centers worldwide. And it has already started to revolutionize the industry.
Traditional call centers have always been dogged by several problems. Customer care reps have to rely on their natural senses to detect changes in customers’ moods. Also, they typically spend most of the call time searching for answers to customers’ questions. And then, there are language and cultural barriers, which are even more apparent in diverse societies like the US and Europe.
Not only do all of these factors hinder efficiency and contribute to making calls last for much longer than necessary, they also erode customer satisfaction, pushing them to consider competitors. Quite a lot of AI tools have been designed to mitigate these factors. While it is impossible to fully enumerate all of them here, we outline some of the most important ones below.
Automated Interactive Tools
Basic inquiries constitute a high percentage of the volume of call center traffic. Insurers, for example, mostly receive calls about whether or not certain services or damages are insured for. Handling too many of these may leave human agents overwhelmed. Also, it takes valuable time away from more serious inquiries.
Natural language processing (NLP) software and Chatbots have been employed by many customer care agencies to deal with these basic questions. They are programmed to recognize specific words to which they can provide adequate replies without human intervention. This greatly reduces the call time, since customers would no longer need to wait long periods to speak to a human agent.
Human-agent Guidance Tools
Like we have said earlier, human agents have to rely on their natural senses to detect changes in customers’ moods. Also, they spend most of the time searching for answers to customers’ questions instead of actually speaking to them. Lots of times, this leaves customers feeling very unsatisfied.
Automated guidance tools help monitor speech and can quickly alert human agents to slight changes in a customer’s cadence and pitch, as well as gestures that may indicate a change in their mood. Also, these tools can identify specific words in a customer’s speech and show predicted answers on the agent’s screen in real-time. This helps to greatly shorten call times.
Interaction Forecast Tools
Call routing is an integral task at call centers. Usually, customers may have certain specifics relating to their general behavior or the product and service they are purchasing. These sets of customers are usually routed to human agents appropriately trained to handle those situations.
AI Interaction forecast tools analyze customers’ history, including the type of questions they ask and the type of words they commonly use. The AI tool then uses this information to forecast the kind of interaction the call is going to be, which may help assign the customer to the most qualified human agent.
Workflow Automation Tools
Significant parts of a customer service agent’s tasks are repetitive. These include follow-up emails, invoices, etc. Workflow automation can be set up using simple if > then protocols to carry out these tasks. These tools can be easily set up by anyone with minimal training.
Choosing the Right AI Product
It is worthy of note that human agents will not be replaced by AI in the foreseeable future. Human agents will continue to be required for complicated requests, and emotional intelligence. Advances in AI will only serve to further increase efficiency and productivity. The field of AI technology is still actively expanding. Definitely, there are still many more features and applications to be built.
At NeoSound, we have served and continue to serve many businesses across the US and Europe. However, we haven’t let that slow our R&D process. The NeoSound team continues to research more ways to make customer communication better for our clients.