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Artificial intelligence (AI) benefits our lives in many ways today—from finding the least congested commuter route to personalizing the music on our streaming services. Similarly, AI is transforming contact centers—by empowering them to drive key performance indicators (KPIs) that were traditionally out of reach.
By using AI to analyze and leverage these key metrics, your contact center will be seen as a net revenue generator rather than a cost center—and it can provide better customer experiences and help you retain agents, too.
Driving Business Value
AI builds predictive models from customer and resource attributes, to determine the best customer-resource match to drive your business outcome—whether the best resource is content, bot, application or human agent—for every interaction.
Contact centers traditionally only manage to KPIs like Service Level, Average Speed of Answer, Average Handling Time, Abandon Rates and Agent Occupancy to gauge their performance. But those metrics are primarily focused on cost control and don’t directly correlate with bottom-line business value.
In addition to optimizing traditional contact center metrics, predictive AI models enable managers to optimize business outcomes like Net Promoter Score, First-Contact Resolution or Sales Closure Rates. Moving beyond operational metrics to focus on these business outcomes helps transform the contact center from a cost center to a revenue/brand ambassador center.
By leveraging customer profile and intent data, along with agent profile data to connect each customer interaction with the resource that can properly resolve the customer request the first time, you’ll reduce customer effort and improve customer experience and satisfaction—and that experience is reflected back onto the brand.
And you want visibility into what’s happening in your environment. You want an explainable AI solution. This is the difference between “clear box” and “black box” technology.
With a black box solution, you can’t see what data is used or why decisions were made. On the other hand, a clear box technology focuses on transparency: You can see the data used in the decision-making process, the decisions made and the business results. You can even run A/B testing to see the performance lift between traffic that’s using the predictive model and traffic flowing through the legacy logic.
Customers still need and want to be served as quickly as possible, but sometimes speed is not the top contact center KPI to focus on—it’s not the only factor driving satisfaction.
For example, if a customer connects with an agent in less than 20 seconds but then is transferred because the agent can’t help them, or has to call back to get to the right department, that’s a high-effort, high-frustration experience.
Using AI creates a different scenario: AI can consider a wide array of customer data to determine and confirm intent and then connect the customer with the right resource the first time—resulting in a low-effort, high-satisfaction experience. Even if the customer has to wait a little longer to get connected, they’ll remember the satisfying experience.
Agent Retention and Satisfaction
AI also helps with contact center KPIs such as agent attrition and training costs. For example, providing agents with the work they’ve proven to be successful at drives high levels of engagement and job satisfaction, reducing costly agent churn. AI reduces training costs by providing visibility into specific target areas for agent development and insight into the skills that are essential for new hire success.
It helps agents with dynamic knowledge that gives them the right answers and increases confidence, introduces automation in a way that reduces their manual effort and makes their job easier, and increases the time they’re engaged with work they’re good at.
We’ve all come to expect more satisfying experiences when AI helps us avoid traffic jams and fine-tune our media options. Today, your contact center customers can enjoy better experiences, too. By leveraging the rich customer, resource and result data you already have, using the power of AI to match each interaction with the best resource that’s proven to deliver success, you can impact key business metrics and transform the value proposition of your contact center.
For more information on AI, check out the eBook: Blended AI for Customer Experience.
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