Artificial Intelligence is the next major technology with the potential to radically transform the contact centre, including both customer and agent experiences. Through implementing AI in an organisation’s communications estate, whether it be intelligent chatbots, sophisticated image recognition software, or a combination of AI-powered technology, interactions between businesses and their customers will become more efficient and effective.
Automating, and in some cases eliminating, mundane and time-consuming agent activities is a key benefit of incorporating AI-driven technology into contact centres. Most contact centres track agent efficiency and productivity through key metrics, such as Average Handling Time (AHT), but manual tasks such as customer record retrieval and After Call Work (ACW) like inserting wrap codes can drastically increase AHTs, leading to inaccurate representations. When AHT is high, customers are left waiting in queues, building up a backlog and reducing the amount of interactions that can be processed through the day. However, Artificial Intelligence offers contact centres the opportunity to significantly cut down on the amount of administration work agents need to do, allowing them to dedicate more time to cultivating meaningful relationships with customers.
While giving agents the freedom to set wrap codes at the end of an interaction can be a valuable way of gathering information about the types of contacts being processed, it pushes up AHT for every call. In addition, manual wrap-up can result in misuse, with agents prolonging the time taken in order to benefit from extra breaks, or categorising interactions incorrectly to avoid attracting attention from managers. With the implementation of AI-driven Natural Language Processing (NLP), the extra time added to the end of every interaction can be significantly reduced or even removed, while misuse of wrap codes is rendered impossible. The NLP engine listens to the conversation as it is happening, tracking topics, keywords, and even sentiment. As a result, the information that would have been manually inserted by the agent after each call is instead automatically filled in and saved onto the system. By reducing the administrative pressure to accurately and rapidly report on each enquiry in the wrap period, agents can focus on delivering excellent personalised services.
Natural Language Processing provides contact centres with an effective solution for automatically categorising interactions, removing the need for manual wrap-up processes and providing both agents and customers with a more efficient, more personal experience. With simple and repetitive tasks eradicated from the agent’s work day, their soft skills can become the central function of their role, driving FCR and promoting meaningful customer satisfaction.