5 Ways Artificial Intelligence Can Help Improve Customer Service

By Blythe Lawton, Senior Director, First Associates Loan Servicing

Blythe Lawton, Senior Director, First Associates Loan Servicing

You hear a lot about Artificial Intelligence (AI) in today’s world, but how can it truly help your business move forward? Surprisingly, there are many areas of your business where AI can be utilized and you don’t have to be a tech giant to take advantage. Some common places AI can assist:

• Account servicing
• General customer service
• Order and collections management
• Appointment setting
• Lead generation
• Sales growth

84 percent of enterprises believe investing in AI will lead to greater competitive advantages. - Statista

Understanding what Artificial Intelligence can do is a big part of deciding how to implement it into your business. AI yields benefits that are far beyond just speed and computing power as many people believe. AI allows technology and algorithms to:

• Recognize and Understand - handwriting, text, voice, image and video data
• Identify Semantics - to understand the meaning of words based on contextual information
• Apply Context and Interact - to provide information that is situation-aware and reflects relevant data associations
• Reason and Make Decisions - via a standard thought-process that can be highly customized
• Learn and Improve - performance continuously based on data patterns and feedback received

When you stop and think about it, gaining even one or two of those capabilities has the potential to dramatically improve understanding and communication which is why AI is so impactful in the customer service industry. It allows proactive optimization of customer interactions and the ability to better address their needs.

Since AI technology enables us to recognize patterns, create efficiencies that streamline interfaces and apply learning to requests, in many industries it is being used to help improve customer experience. That can manifest in something as simple as an intuitive tool to guide users through processes and help make preliminary decisions, reductions in time spent on back-end processes so answers are available more quickly or concurrently processing thousands of pieces of data to provide better recommendations/indicators. As a result, AI can offer these five top benefits to enhance your company’s service:

1. Optimal Service Enhanced by Big Data Technology

Ensuring your customers are satisfied with the level of service is a top priority. Incorporating Artificial Intelligence to better understand and serve your customers is important as it helps to:

• Increase one-call resolutions
• Minimize holds, transfers and repeat contacts
• Reduce overall call time
• Automate real-time quality control monitoring

35 percent of executives stated that they will use AI to make better business decisions. -Deloitte, 2017

2. Smart Calling, Emotional Monitoring and Business Insight Detection

Using Artificial Intelligence to record every call and interaction offers the necessary customer insight to improve key service areas. AI also provides us the tools to adapt and monitor calls, so agents can proactively help your customers by using:

• Emotional detection and monitoring
• Optimized situation handling to avoid hot points
• Real-time call modification to better address need and improve service

3. Consistent Brand Message

A considerable amount of time and work goes into developing your brand and it is a key factor in maintaining a connection with your customers. That is why it is imperative to protect and cultivate your brand image. AI technology helps ensure that your company is represented in the best possible light through:

• Monitoring tone, voice and brand language on 100 percent of interactions
• Automated dual-screen brand cues, including brand content and offers
• On-point, consistent omnichannel representation
• Branded follow up and automated remarketing

4. Key Customer Insights to Help Grow Your Business

Understanding what customers love about your business and what keeps them loyal is important. With AI, it is possible to adapt processes and gain insights that help increase growth and optimize service improvements by:

• Automatically categorizing every call
• Learning and recording customer preferences
• Identifying opportunities and keywords directly from the customer
• Capturing lead generation and revenue growth opportunities

By 2035, AI could double economic growth rates in 20 countries and boost labor productivity by up to 40 percent -Forbes

5. Ongoing, Effective Agent Growth & Development Plans

Helping call center agents develop their skills is crucial to achieve success and helps them better serve your customer’s needs. Incorporating AI technology to identify behaviors of top-performing agents and use them as teaching moments for their peers is critical to improving overall performance. This delivers:

• Real-time agent coaching and feedback
• Data-based performance assessments and incentive plans
• Detection of positive agent interaction patterns and situation handling to improve customer experience

Using AI to make improvements in these areas of any company’s service strategy can help improve customer satisfaction, increase retention and promote sales growth. That makes the real question not ‘will you incorporate AI into your model, but WHEN’?

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