Does Your Contact Center Use Conversational AI? It Should

The word “conversation” is defined as “a talk, especially an informal one, between two or more people, in which news and ideas are exchanged.” Besides the fact that conversational AI (artificial intelligence) takes place between a person and a machine, the definition still holds true. Information is exchanged in an informal way and, in the case of a modern call center, customer questions are answered and issues are resolved.

An artificial intelligence call center is designed to take customer service to a new level. While live agents are needed for complex questions and those issues requiring human empathy, a significant number of calls, texts or chat messages are often repetitive, simple inquiries that do not require human resources. 

Over the years, companies have offered a wide range of solutions including offshore outsourcing, interactive voice response (IVRs), or phone trees, all of which have disadvantages when it comes to providing a good customer experience.

What is Conversational AI?

Conversational AI is a technology that can understand multiple customer intents. In other words, a machine can listen to normal conversational speech and determine with accuracy what a customer needs. It uses natural language processing to handle Tier One customer calls, which are those repetitive mundane questions that live agents find boring in their day-to-day work. Get a customer service automation demo here.

How does AI work in a contact center?

AI for contact centers works as soon as a customer calls, picking up the call with zero wait time. This is critical in a market where, according to Bloomberg, wait times are tripling due to staff shortages and dissatisfaction.

The solution can quickly determine whether the question or inquiry is one that can be handled automatically. If so, it pulls relevant customer information and delivers the answer or solution. If not, it creates a complete set of notes, finds the correct live agent, and seamlessly transfers the call for resolution.

What is the difference between a chatbot and conversational AI?

Both chatbot and AI solutions are automated customer service systems. The difference is that chatbots are very limited in terms of the problems and inquiries they can handle. If a customer question falls outside of its repertoire of knowledge, it must redirect the inquiry to an agent. Conversational AI not only has a broader scope but it continues to learn the longer it takes calls. 

Using AI offers serious benefits

Just about any company or industry can benefit from an artificial intelligence call center. The organization reduces costs associated with other less effective technologies or trying to recruit and hire more agents. Its customers get questions answered or issues resolved quickly.

For example, one subscription-based retail company offers healthcare products and leverages conversational AI to minimize wait times for its customers when they have questions or problems. Since deploying Replicant’s solution, this organization’s customers have responded well, finding the solution easy to use and convenient as it is available 24/7 and through any channel. 

The perfect hybrid solution

A machine learning call center doesn’t have to eliminate human customer service agents. In fact, artificial intelligence call center solutions work in tandem with live agents. Ideally, they are “members of the same team”, both dedicated to providing stellar customer service at an affordable cost and in an efficient manner.

While AI technology has an unlimited capacity, it is designed to handle repetitive Tier One calls including account status inquiries, order progress, or appointment changes. These make up the bulk of the incoming calls for many contact centers and having AI customer service actually relieves some of the workloads for live agents, freeing them to have more time to help customers with more complex problems.

This hybrid solution regularly returns a 55 percent cost savings when compared to outsourced live agents.

If you’re ready for a customer service automation demo, and want to understand more about conversational AI technology, get started now. We’d love to discuss your contact center needs.

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