In the first part of this three-part series, we explored some of the opportunities that artificial intelligence-based solutions offer to an organization’s customer experience program. In the second part, we explored some of the challenges of doing this. In this final part of the series, we’re going to look at how to best integrate AI and CX in a meaningful way.
Successful implementation of AI-based approaches in any area of the business involves integration and augmentation, and not a simple replacement of one approach with the other. To wrap things up, let’s talk about how to integrate artificial intelligence and human-based approaches to create a stronger overall customer experience program.
While there are many more, here are three ways that AI and human-based approaches can work together to create better customer experience:
Automation allows humans to focus on emotional connection
AI can help businesses automate many routine tasks that are time-consuming and tedious for human agents, such as answering FAQs, booking appointments, sending reminders, processing payments and more. This can reduce operational costs, increase efficiency and free up human agents to handle more challenging issues that require creativity, empathy and problem-solving skills.
AI can also provide valuable insights from customer data that can help human agents understand customer needs, preferences and behaviors better. For example, AI can analyze customer feedback, sentiment, behavior patterns and purchase history to identify pain points, opportunities and trends. Human agents can use this information to tailor their responses, offer personalized recommendations and solutions and build rapport with customers.
Humans and AI can learn from each other
AI systems are by no means perfect, as evidenced by many comic, and other offensive examples of output from generative AI and other platforms that you may have seen mentioned in your news feeds. These artificial intelligence-based systems need constant training and monitoring to ensure they perform well and do not make mistakes or cause harm.
Human agents can play a crucial role in providing feedback, guidance and ongoing learning to AI systems. For example, human agents can review the outputs of AI systems such as chatbots or voice assistants to correct errors or inaccuracies or flag inappropriate or unethical responses. Additionally, human agents can teach AI systems new skills or knowledge by providing examples or explanations or reinforcing positive behaviors or outcomes.
Similarly, machine learning and other AI-based systems have plenty to teach humans as long as their output (and ideally their decisioning process) is easily understood and explainable, as discussed earlier. In this way, artificial intelligence and human intelligence can complement one another to the benefit of the customer. For many consumer businesses, this opens up a way to fund your investments, as the savings on research and testing can be substantial, in addition to other benefits from reducing call volumes and driving up first time resolution for customer issues.
Seamless customer service can be the product of AI and humans working together
Sometimes customers may need both AI and human assistance in their journey. For example, a customer may start a conversation with a chatbot but then request to speak to a live agent for further assistance or clarification. In such cases, it is important that the transition between AI and human is smooth and seamless.
AI systems should be able to transfer the context of the conversation such as customer details, history, or intent to the human agent without losing any information or causing any confusion for the customer.
Likewise, human agents should be able to access the information provided by the AI system easily and continue the conversation where it left off without asking redundant questions or repeating information.
AI-based tools should also be able to support the human agent during a customer conversation by providing relevant suggestions tips or resources that may help resolve the issue faster or enhance customer satisfaction.
Despite some challenging areas to overcome, artificial intelligence is poised to have a transformative impact on the customer experience, and the way that brands deliver CX. By balancing the strengths of AI with the strengths of your existing customer experience teams, you can create a win-win scenario for your business, and your customers.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this 3-part series on AI and the Customer Experience. If you have questions or want to continue your CX journey, please reach out to us here or on LinkedIn.