As technology raises consumer expectations for smarter, faster and more productive communications, more executives are making customer experience a top priority.
Much of the burden falls to the contact center and IT teams, who must put in place the most effective tools, processes and standards. That’s not an easy job, especially when their mandate includes delivering a personalized experience to millions of individual customers.
That’s a difficult task, but not an impossible one—thanks to machines. When businesses give machines a voice, they can scale an intimate experience and deliver a higher level of service quality. By handling routine issues, machines free up contact center agents to focus on complex problems and higher-value customers. This means customers save time too.
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Business leaders already recognize the possibilities here. In a survey by Opinium Research, 85 percent of IT decision-makers said they expect machine-to-machine interactions to positively transform the customer experience. Ninety percent plan to give machines a voice in their business by tying them to their communications and collaboration tools.
Among the major challenges involved with providing personalized experiences are the difficulties involved with scaling or delivering consistently without the right communications tools in place. By giving machines a voice, however, contact centers can automate customer journeys.
What might this machine-enhanced world look like? These scenarios provide a peek at how automation will improve the customer experience.
Talking to a robot. Machines have a powerful ability connect dots behind the scenes. To resolve a routine issue, chatbots tap into a vast database of solutions. When a customer requests help, the bot uses customer data, including a history of that individual’s past service calls, to personalize the interaction and find the right solution.
This ability to find an answer fast and tailor the interaction to a specific customer is one reason 75 percent of IT leaders plan to implement machine-based communications within the next two years.
Omnichannel. A dynamic customer journey can start in almost any channel – voice, video, mobile or online – depending on the customer’s preference. For example, a shopper might begin by opening a web chat, but if their questions are too complex, the chatbot can route them to the most appropriate channel for answers. For example, it could direct the customer to a video that guides them through assembly instructions or connect them to a human agent via phone.
Sensors. The Internet of Things creates new opportunities to give machines a voice. When sensors are embedded into appliances and devices, they can identify performance changes and automatically communicate with manufacturers and vendors. For example, more manufacturers are connecting washing machines to IoT. When a problem occurs, a sensor transmits a message to both the field service and contact center teams. The machine schedules a technician appointment and notifies an agent to follow up with the customer.
Wearables. One of the most exciting opportunities for machine-to-machine interaction is wearables. These devices can share a steady stream of information, which a business can use to improve the customer experience as well as enhance its product offerings. For example, medical professionals can use wearables to manage patient care from a distance. Health data is automatically transmitted from the wearable to a physician. If vital signs show abnormal activity, for example, the physician can be alerted automatically before the patient has even dialed 911.
These scenarios show that giving machines a voice creates new and exciting possibilities for transforming the customer experience. With machine learning and automation, contact centers can communicate more quickly and solve problems more efficiently. And that makes customers happy.