“The development of full artificial intelligence could spell the end of the human race.”
– Stephen Hawking
But don’t worry, we won’t be needing John Connor to lead the resistance any time soon. Right now AI is more about helping humans carry out their jobs, than enslaving the human race.
When it comes to customer support, AI is not just one more tool, but a complete toolkit to help agents perform better. It’s a revolution, like the first online ticketing system was. There is a huge debate around AI assisted customer service, and the impact on customer experience and satisfaction.
At Jatana we decided to dive deep into this debate, and give you our professional and unbiased opinion:
AI will not replace human agents
It will work in tandem with them, taking over all the repetitive routines involving the ticket triage, the tagging…Leveraging the power of data mining and machine learning to enhance your customer journey will shorten Average Handle Time (AHT) and costs, while letting agents focus on the more challenging tickets.
Happier agents with more time to address the more complex tickets
Dealing with repetitive, time consuming, and plain boring tasks take a toll in your agents’ happiness and subsequently their productivity. After hours tagging tickets, and asking for the same reference number your agents feel disconnected and alienated.
Freeing your agents of those repetitive actions will not only impact AHT and ticket processing cost, but also overall agents happiness. Up to 50% of your agents’ time can be freed by adding AI to your first line of support. They’d not only be less stressed and more satisfied with their day-to-day, but agents could use that time for critical thinking tasks and complex customer interactions.
Agents could use that time for critical thinking tasks and complex customer interactions.
AI will not take over communication with the customer
AI will assist, and in some cases automate, Tiers 0 and 1 support.
Tier 0 (T0)
Tier 0 (or self-help) is in the form of “wikis” or FAQs that allow for users to access and resolve information. Zendesk’s Answer bot operates at this level, ‘reading’ the tickets and suggesting support articles to the customer to solve their queries.
Tier I (TI)
Tier 1 is the initial support level responsible for basic customer issues. It is synonymous with first-line support, level 1 support… A Tier I agent job is to gather the customer’s information, request additional information such as reference number, product model… And to determine the customer’s issue by analyzing the symptoms and figuring out the underlying problem.
As you can imagine, most of this support involves back and forth with the client and asking for more information. Jatana can automate those routines by suggesting macros to the agents or directly replying to the customer.
Millennials prefer text based support
A Salesforce study revealed that 72% of Millennials believe a phone call is not the best way to resolve their customer service issue. That means that message based support will only increase, so automating part of it is the key to increase agents’ productivity and reduce cost.
Quality support around the clock
Quality support used to be expensive, and at times inefficient. AI does not take vacation, does not care about public holidays, does not sleep… Your customers will have real 24/7 support.
A Zendesk study showed that 42% of customers showed more interest in purchasing after experiencing good customer service. The same study also points out that 52% of them stopped purchasing due to a single disappointing customer support interaction.
The study shows statistics that strongly suggest that quality customer service impacts on customers’ lifetime value and increases the chance of referrals.
AI training is a hands-off process
On average, it costs $4000 to hire a service agent, and an additional $4,800 to train them. Training your model to automate part of your customer support is a hands off and usually cost free process.
Adding AI to your support team will not only reduce the number of agents needed to deal with an increasing volume of requests, it will also reduce the training time. Your new agents will have assistance from the AI in the form of suggested replies, auto-tagging, auto-forwarding… They will learn on their own, without the constant intervention of a coach.
AI is simply the future of Customer Service
- By 2020, 85% of all customer interactions will be handled without a human agent according to IBM
- Investment in AI will increase more than 300% this year – Forrester
- 33% of contact centers plan to invest in process automation, 56% of TMT companies plan to invest in AI (Deloitte)
- 8 out of 10 businesses have already implemented or are planning to adopt AI as a customer service solution by 2020 – Oracle
- US businesses are losing $62 billion per year through poor customer service – NewVoiceMedia