“The way your employees feel is the way your customers will feel. And if your employees don’t feel valued, neither will your customers”
Sybil F. Stershic
Have you heard people saying call centers and contact centers are synonyms for each other? Well, contact centers are a modern version of call centers. They are the modern reality emphasizing the fact that getting to the customer today is much easier than before. Contact centers underline the importance of using modern communication channels for customer interaction, which earlier was restricted to phone calls in call centers.
Contact centers highlight that the traditional BPO companies have now stretched to communication models like SMS, event promotion using push notifications, surveys, use of social media, use of in-app chats etc. apart from just using telephones to get to the customer.
This demonstrates that customary call centers handle callers through telephone calls only, while contact centers use all communication methods to give enhanced customer experience. Moreover, the introduction of AI (Artificial Intelligence) comes as an added advantage that strengthens contact centers by offering various perquisites.
Contact centers integrate customer relationship management (CRM) and track public-business interactions and now with the use of AI, the results to customers will enrich. Therefore, here we team up the ways AI is a blessing for contact centers:
When we talk about AI replacing IVR (Interactive Voice Response) processes lets’ know firstly, what IVR actually is. An automated telephony system, which interacts with customers, gathers their area of interest and disseminates appropriate calls as per the suitable recipients, is IVR procedure.
IVRs work on a predefined set of rules, however, after the invention of AI, Natural Language Processing and Machine Learning techniques understands the customer statements on itself and automatically gives the user a set of choices. Isn’t it amazing?
Moreover, AI also helps the customers avoid stress over pressing, 1 for sales and 2 for customer support, as contact centers now have a much improved automated experience to offer.
Talking about the difference between AI and IVR processes, IVR works on a predefined input and brings the same output. However, AI uses a predefined input and is capable to bring a purely different and enhanced output. This difference depends on the ways a system learns from probability designs.
AI has the power to capture data from customer interactions, which it feeds into logical engines that helps in augmenting call center processes.
Tools like AI voice agents, sentiment analysis and chatbots help in making business functions simpler and quicker. These artificial tools help to spot trends like customer irritation or disappointment and the same information reaches the business instantly for enhanced output to the customer.
Large contact centers often face the problem of staff attrition and staff shortage and AI strengthens the business here.
AI tackles this problem with the help of virtual agents! These assistants direct the customers to the required business website and if the assistant is unable to answer the customer, a live chat advisor takes on the duty.
Most of the issues at the initial level is resolved with virtual agents at work. Moreover, AI technology is upgrading every next day, which makes it a boon for contact centers and IT functions.
Contact centers have this everyday work of gathering a large amount of consumer data and AI is here to help. Consumers after sharing valuable data expect enhanced service in return.
However, their expectation tarnishes with time, when they have to share their data repeatedly on several occasions. This repetitive demand becomes the reason for customer dissatisfaction and contact centers can solve it with robotic process automation (RPA).
RPA captures, analyzes and shares the information collected across all channels. This reduces employee effort and brings enhanced customer experience.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) will enable new trends in customer behavior to be identified at very early stages in their development.
AI will soon enable opportunities for call centers to predict customer needs and behavior, which will help managers in predicting the consequences of an action.
This prediction will also help businesses strategize their resource planning, sales and marketing campaign planning and bring efficient results to ensure customer satisfaction.
AI will soon identify customer behavior at an early stage and interaction analytics tool is a small example of the same. As a business owner, even I would recommend having a technology with a capacity to identify customer behavior, so that there is an assurance over customer satisfactory results.
An AI tool that predicts customer behavior helps to develop better business solutions. It retains lost customers who might have left the service by analyzing their behavior.
Contact centers today have strengthened with reliable and always available robots at customer service. Robots act as an asset as they solve business query at times when agents are unavailable. They intelligently search business information and resolve customer query as quickly as possible.
Establishing a correct balance between humans and bots are essential for enriched results to the customer, as eventually, humans handle robots.
The best way to enhance customer satisfaction is to get customer calls’ attended by a specialist.
AI helps here as it identifies the call type, and passes on to the relevant agent or chatbot. AI also helps customers in getting contact center advisors that have a background about their need.
Furthermore, the future of contact centers is all set to view advanced AI facilities like customer need predictions through AI, automating response for customer complaints, enhancing call center advisor capability with AI, monitoring advisor performance, improving self-service and much more.