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AI and the Contact Center



There is one topic on the minds of contact center professionals: Artificial Intelligence. Within the last few months, the pace of advancement has been staggering. But what can AI actually do and what is still science fiction (at least for another month or two)?


Fiction

When we hear the term “Artificial Intelligence” it is tempting to imagine interacting with it like starship crew members: “Computer, tea. Earl Gray. Hot.” But the reality is that there is no easy button for AI… yet. There is no AI add-on to your contact center platform that will intuitively know how to fulfill your heart’s desire and be able to make it so.


But it’s still tempting. You’ve probably seen half a dozen slick demos from companies that promise to naturally and perfectly handle everything you do. Remember that such demos are created to give exactly that impression so that you will pay for the product and the costly professional services that will also be required to turn an idea into a practical solution.


Fact

AI is rapidly changing the way contact centers function and the pace of that change is likely to accelerate. Here are a few examples of how AI is already being leveraged to simplify and automate contact center operations:

  • Assist agents with information and suggested responses

  • Take notes in real time for a conversation

  • Supplement agent workforce

  • Handle live customer calls

  • Automate repetitive tasks

  • Understand and summarize frequent customer questions

  • Generate knowledge content

  • Summarize call recordings and digital conversation transcripts

In the past couple of months, OpenAI and Google have been making headlines with their generative AI releases. It would be hard to overstate how significant these advances are and how impactful they are going to be in the near future. If you haven’t already seen them, here are a couple of videos I recommend watching. The OpenAI one is a bit long and geeky, but you’ll get the idea.


Implications

Contact centers and companies that support them need to understand at least 2 things:

  • AI can effectively excel and outperform our current capabilities

  • We need to prepare to leverage the power of AI rather than being swept away by it

This means:

  • Documenting business knowledge and processes

  • Modernizing and refining business data so that it can be easily accessed and consumed

  • Investing in employee training and upskilling to be able to collaborate with AI to provide more consistent, accurate, personal, proactive, and productive customer experience


Tell us about how AI is impacting your contact center below

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