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Contact center agents are at a crossroads of customer experience excellence. Knowledge management (KM) could be the single most impactful technology to help contact centers improve performance. An agent’s ability to answer pressing customer questions affects multiple key contact center metrics, including average handle time, first contact resolution, call escalation and the ability for agents to handle increasingly diverse and complex contacts without extensive training and specialization.
Contact center leadership understands this potential, but many fear the KM challenge is too big to tackle. So, they create workarounds to the detriment of their customers and their contact center. It’s time to acknowledge the problem and solve it.
The Frontline Problem
When agents can’t find information, they transfer customers or put them on hold while they dig through documents, ask their neighbors, consult with a subject matter expert or walk around looking for someone who can help. As a last resort they say, “Let me research this and someone will get back to you,” leaving the customer wondering who and when. None of these options meet business goals—or customer expectations.
If agents find the information they need, it can take a long time and they might not trust it. The information could be out of date, inaccurate or unclear. The result is a quick downward cycle on the use of the knowledge base (KB) while cheat sheets and tribal knowledge become the go-to sources.
These scenarios were common enough before companies beefed up self-service through online and mobile applications. Now, centers struggle with agents who are overwhelmed—trying to retain knowledge on an increasingly complex and diverse set of contact types, many of which they rarely handle. The result is high attrition, especially for new hires, and poor performance. And it forces contact centers to segment skills to train agents as “specialists” in phases to build competency. But this compromises economies of scale and risks more transfers.
The Support Problem
When contact centers lack the budget or bandwidth to keep the knowledge base up to date, their staff dumps documents into the knowledge base. Without someone focused on optimizing knowledge, it can quickly grow stale and ineffective.
And this leads agents to look for nuggets of gold within a long list of documents, some of which might be duplicates or entirely wrong. Additionally, poor search functions make it difficult for agents to find the correct answers quickly.
With a new generation of artificial intelligence (AI), automation and big data, contact centers can pursue knowledge management without the issues that have hindered initiatives in the past. The foundation of a contact center is integrated, intelligent, knowledge retrieval by agents, customers and bots. This starts with a search that actually works and enables content to be found quickly and effortlessly.
Automation is another massive area that never affected traditional KM. Now KM can leverage massive amounts of data and aggregate, transform and assess trends through analytics and AI. This creates a new opportunity to notify admins when content is going out of date, when agents are not finding what they need and when content is being abandoned. And it removes the burden on maintenance and administration that wasn’t possible in the last generation of KM. It’s a game changer for any contact center team.
AI also improves the ability to find information. Content can be recommended to agents based on IVR selection, customer profiles, call resolution patterns and search path history. When searches are performed, AI can also recommend information based on the next-best action for agents.
KM at the Crossroads of Contact Center Excellence
With an easy integration into your Genesys platform, KM create huge ROI within months of implementation. Agents will know that source knowledge is accurate, consistent and trusted.
AI-enabled KM also reduces the maintenance burden—reducing the time it takes admins to ensure information is up to date and useful.
Reboot your perspective on knowledge strategy and consider integrating these breakthrough technologies into your Genesys platform. KM can create benefits like:
If you’re ready for a KM reboot, click here to learn how to put theory into action. You can also watch the on-demand webinar featuring Shelf to find out how Artificial Intelligence is transforming knowledge management.
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