5 Ways Artificial Intelligence is Transforming Customer Service

Author: Simon Black | Date: 03/11/2022

In competitive markets, customer service can be the differentiator that sets one company apart from another. A study cited by Forbes showed that customers in the US are willing to spend 17% more when a company has impeccable customer service. Therefore, in order to provide the best customer service possible, companies need to employ strategies that allow them to meet and exceed customer expectations. 

One way to do just that is by using artificial intelligence (AI) to empower customer service agents.

Despite its advantages, AI is not yet widely deployed within customer service. This may be because many companies are concerned about the cost of implementing AI solutions if they cannot see an immediate ROI. Similarly, many customer service providers don’t realise that AI can be attuned to real-time signals, meaning companies aren’t responding to issues as quickly as they ought to be.

However, companies that have started to use AI within their customer service departments are beginning to see the benefits of doing so. Let’s take a look at some of the ways AI is transforming customer service and why there is no better time to start transforming your approach.  

1. Guiding Agents to Deliver the Next Best Action

NBA, or next best action, utilises AI to empower customer service agents by helping them to identify the best course of action during voice or digital customer conversations. Traditionally, the next best action was generated following a workflow or script, and for many organisations this provides a perfectly adequate solution, today.

In the future organisations will use AI to analyse past customer interactions as well, it will learn and generate the next best action based on what the customer needs to do next. This can include directing the customer to the most relevant information, expediting data entry, ensuring compliance or escalating their query to management.

NBA is a promising trend within modern-day contact centres and has the potential to dramatically improve customer satisfaction levels. By providing agents with the ability to resolve customer queries quicker and more efficiently, NBA can help to reduce call times and improve first-call resolution (FCR) rates.

In addition, NBA can help increase cross and upselling opportunities by making it easier for agents to guide customers toward relevant products and services. As a result, NBA has the potential to significantly improve a businesses financial performance.

Other benefits of NBA include:

  • Reducing the volume and intensity of training contact centre agents require.
  • Ensuring that the customer support agents meet the required standards in terms of both quality and compliance.
  • Delivering a more personalised experience to customers.
  • Increased agent productivity and job satisfaction.

2. Solves the Language Barrier

As businesses look to expand their operations across territories they are faced with the challenge of providing customer sensitive service in a variety of languages. Hiring multilingual customer service agents can be expensive and time-consuming, making it difficult for businesses to scale their operations quickly. However, with the help of AI, businesses can overcome these challenges.

AI-powered software platforms offer real-time translation capabilities, empowering contact centre agents to answer customer questions in their native language. In addition, leading software platforms can produce easy-to-understand, conversational translations, rather than the literal translations that can often create confusion.

By offering support in customers’ native languages and in real-time, you can access a far wider market while ensuring your customers in each region feel looked after and valued, rather than simply a source of income for your business.

As a result, AI presents a viable solution for businesses looking to provide excellent customer service on a global scale.

3. Interprets Customer Sentiment

Customer sentiment analytics is the process of using AI to interpret customers’ unspoken feelings. This information can be used to ascertain:

  • What customers like
  • What customers don’t like
  • What they feel positive about
  • What they don’t feel positive about.

Results from customer sentiment analytics can be used to improve everything from the product or service itself to the channels through which customer service is delivered. In addition, AI-powered platforms can automatically route customers to the best available agent based on their sentiment, further enhancing the customer experience.

Sentiment analysis is also essential for brand reputation and customer loyalty. By monitoring customer sentiment via voice and speech analytics, businesses can identify issues with specific agents or products early on and take steps to mitigate them before they cause long-term damage.

Utilising AI to understand customer sentiment can give you an edge over the competition by allowing agents to engage in more productive interactions with customers, thereby improving customer service outcomes.

Empower your agents with Awaken’s innovative, scalable and resilient software that dynamically guides agents in real time to the next best action.

Explore Our Intelligent Agent Features

4. Enables Proactive Management of Agent Well-being

The relationship between agent and manager is crucial to success in any customer service environment. The agent is the front-line representative of the company, and the manager is responsible for ensuring that they provide outstanding service.

Voice analytics can help managers identify issues agents are facing before the situation deteriorates, resulting in agent wellbeing procedures powered by AI. By understanding agents’ emotional state, managers can provide targeted support that provides agents with the confidence and reassurance they need to do their jobs effectively, improving job satisfaction and retention in the process.

Not only will this create a more positive work environment, but it will also result in better ROI long term. As a result, voice analytics has the potential to transform the way that managers interact with their agents, leading to better customer service and improved business outcomes.

5. Glean Meaningful and Actionable Insights

Data is everything. The more you have, the better you can understand your customers and anticipate their needs. However, collecting and analysing data can be a time-consuming and complicated process. This is where automation and AI come in.

By using these technologies, contact centres can:

  • Draw meaningful insights from raw data
  • Identify problem areas
  • Develop more efficient ways of doing business. 

Simply put, data collected using AI can help businesses put in place procedures that empower agents whilst providing them with the knowledge they need to work more intuitively without extra training. Furthermore, AI-powered customer service helps streamline tedious tasks, creating the capacity for agents to prioritise what matters most — giving customers a better experience.

If you’d like to learn more about data analytics and insights, why not check out the roundup from a chat I had with Tom Durnell at the 2021 Call and Contact Centre Expo?

Using AI to Optimise Your Contact Centre

By automating data collection and analysis, businesses can reduce the resources required for understanding their customers. Furthermore, AI-powered outcomes like NBA and sentiment analysis provide agents with the tools they need to deliver a more personalised experience to customers, leading to better outcomes for both parties.

Ultimately, AI has the potential to optimise contact centres in a several ways, from reducing training time and costs to improving customer satisfaction. However, to fully reap the benefits of AI, businesses need to invest in the right tools and have a clear understanding of how they can be used to achieve specific goals.

Awaken Intelligence is one of the best AI customer service solutions on the market today. Our solutions utilise AI to empower customers service agents, producing real-time translations of customer interactions, suggesting the best responses to customer queries and providing real-time guidance on resolving issues.

In addition, at Awaken Intelligence we also prioritise our own customer service, setting you up with a Customer Success Manager who will work with you to ensure that you’re getting the most out of our platform.

If you’re looking for an AI solution that can help to optimise your contact centre, get in touch with us today.