Artificial Intelligence (AI) has revolutionized customer service, allowing support teams to automate simple resolutions, address tickets more efficiently, and use machine learning to gain insights into customer issues. From data collection to voice recognition and response times to messages, AI can improve the customer experience in almost every way if applied correctly. In this article, 15 members of the Forbes Business Council share their expert view on how organizations can leverage AI to enhance their customer service. Organizations can use machine learning (ML) and natural language processing (NLP) to solve customer problems without human intervention. For example, a technology company created a recommendation system that used the history of tickets and corrections, interactions, etc.
With this solution, which had a data lake for different types of data, several NLP channels and a business graph, NPS ratings improved and resolution time was reduced. To deliver on the promise of AI-based customer service, companies need to combine the reinvented vision of interaction at every point of contact with customers with the right AI-based tools, basic technology and data. Nowadays, most customer support software applications are designed to provide reactive support, that is, they help customers when they have a problem or issue. Agents can be more effective in customer interactions with the help of AI. If the customer calls, the agent can not only answer an immediate question but also offer assistance that deepens the relationship and potentially prevents an additional call from the customer later on. Customer service leaders face challenges that range from selecting the most important use cases for AI to integrating technology with legacy systems and finding the right talent and organizational governance structures. AI-augmented messaging allows customer service agents to manage a large portion of customer inquiries with the help of chatbot assistants.
Companies are turning to AI to offer the proactive, personalized service that customers want, when and how they want it, sometimes even before they know they want it. For transformed organizations, AI-based customer service can increase customer engagement, which translates into greater opportunities for cross-selling and upselling and at the same time reducing the cost of service. AI is capable of analyzing huge data sets, extracting information such as climate and location, and suggesting relevant content to customers. AI can be used to learn customer behavior patterns (such as credit card purchase cycles, retail spending or travel) and then forecast behavior accordingly. AI learning can analyze what traits and behaviors employees bring to customer interactions, raising the bar for everyone. When it comes to managing customer inquiries, most organizations face challenges such as increasing the number of agents to manage the increase in customer traffic.
Today, customer service representatives are tasked with handling a large number of customer calls on a daily basis. Figure 1 shows the new customer service model, from communicating with customers even before they contact a specific need, to providing solutions backed by AI and evaluating performance afterwards. With AI-based solutions in place, companies can provide better service while reducing costs. This creates a virtuous cycle of better service leading to greater satisfaction and commitment from customers.