Co-founder and CEO of Angry Consumera review platform that helps consumers be heard and brands improve their customer service processes.
Keeping up with the pace of global developments and tackling the problems this creates requires flexibility. Companies built with a long-term strategy understand the importance of maintaining high-quality customer service solutions and always strive to maintain a high standard of service for their customers. Now the world is undergoing a new industrial revolution, with artificial intelligence (AI) as a major force and focus. Many industries are integrating AI tools into their manufacturing and service processes and are taking the opportunity to accelerate, streamline and improve various parts of their operations with this technology.
Given the rapid development of AI compared to previous technologies such as computers and the internet, it is natural for companies to feel that they cannot afford to take a passive stance or delay their involvement in AI in an effort to mitigate the risks. to limit. But while AI is touted as the exclusive path to progress, it’s important to understand how it works; caution and a keen awareness of the limitations of the technology will be required.
The benefits and limitations of AI chatbots
There’s a lot of hype around Open AI’s ChatGPT right now, and what interests me most about this technology is its potential applications in improving customer service.
I’ve worked in and alongside customer service for twenty years at every level from helpdesk assistant to Director of Investor Services Technology. In this time, I’ve seen chatbots prove to be a valuable, cost-reducing customer service tool. However, what ChatGPT has to offer goes far beyond the capabilities of older chatbots, and it has the potential to improve customer service in ways that weren’t possible before.
Rather than being limited to a set of master answers, Chat GPT is “trained” on existing human content published on the web. All of the bot’s conclusions, perspectives, and responses are based on patterns found in past human expressions. I see such generative AI as a kind of “thoughtful FAQ” that pushes the capabilities of an AI chatbot to intelligently tailor existing answers and solutions to a customer request by vastly expanding the pool of answers ( a much-complained throttling of chatbots) and reducing the number of times a customer hits a dead end that needs human intervention to move forward.
By minimizing the need for human intervention (up to 80% of basic customer questions can be adequately answered with AI chatbots), the use of AI-enhanced customer service can provide a 30% discount on costs of customer service. A recent dollar-denominated report from Juniper Research found that using chatbots will save businesses $11 billion a year.
While chatbots do reduce the cost of human assistance, their limitations are obvious. While generative AI may be able to piece together useful information in an efficient manner, it is far from truly innovative and still lacks the dynamism and creative thinking that’s what makes a good customer service representative – someone who can think quickly, interpret customers’ less-than-simple situations and concerns, and empathize on a human level. While many customers appreciate the convenience of simple requests, many others view chatbot AI as one additional hoop to jump through in their attempts to talk to a customer service representative – another time-consuming step they may want to avoid altogether, potentially costing you a customer.
Merging old and new
I think the answer is to merge the benefits of AI technologies and human agents, rather than replacing one with the other. Adapting to the new doesn’t mean throwing away everything that has worked so far. Consider the potential benefits of an AI-enabled customer service model: In this setup, AI would help staff find answers in real time to provide superior customer service. Such a system can be used to anticipate customer demands before they contact your company – based on instant analysis of existing data such as purchases, payment methods, etc. – and provide relevant prompts for the CS agent that would otherwise be overlooked. This setup can be a big help in reducing talk time, preventing customer frustration, and deepening the customer relationship through service personalization.
I believe innovation coupled with the basics of a personalized customer service relationship will be what separates the exceptional from the also-rans as we adapt to this shift. At the end of the day, AI is only as good as the data it’s given, so it’s just as important that we continue to develop the resources that give us the best data and make sure that all the tools we use contribute to creating excellent customer service experiences and more effective CS agents. In this way, implementing AI-assisted customer experience solutions will not only improve customer satisfaction and save costs reducing time spent on handling customer queries, but also have a positive impact on the overall health of your business.
Overall, I look at ChatGPT and its implications with optimism, although it’s still a bit early to determine what the future holds for this technology and, more importantly, where it will take us. I advise leaders in the customer service industry to proceed with caution: Adopting this technology may be necessary, but massively committing to replacing human agents with AI could have long-term negative consequences. to have. Instead, consider how you can integrate this technology to further support and grow your customer service agents and, by extension, ensure your customers continue to have great customer experiences.