The Rise Of Digital Contact Centres
Covid-19 have acted as a catalyst for change. Customer expectations changed overnight – and today we see Digital Contact Centres rising to the challenge. The challenge to keep up with customer demands and the pressure on call centre agents.
The Rise of Digital: Conversational Interfaces, Virtual Assistants & Bots
We are quickly moving towards fully integrated and digital channels. For contact centres, AI and virtual assistants are leading and facilitating the rise. They continue to develop, to enhance the customer experience while simplifying business processes. The ‘move to omni-channel’ has been a topic of the digital world for years. A move that is created for the seamless conversation flow. And a move that is created for the benefit of the customer and the agent alike, for enhanced personalisation and easy of communication.
We may not fully be there yet.
But one thing is sure, and that is that AI is playing and increasing and important role for the rise of digital.
Pressure to change
This past year has been ground breaking for contact centres and the experiences they can deliver.
At a time where customers were desperate to talk to suppliers, was also the time where the suppliers had very few agents to take the calls.
The pressure let to frustration for both ends. For this, the contact centre is the solution.
By moving to, and opening up for for more digital channels and AI, Contact Centres have been able to route incoming communication more intelligently. By opening up for more digital channels, the pressure of voice will easy. It guides a way for more digital conversations and ultimately, to self-service.
Now, straightforward queries can be routed to self-help or knowledge bases, online FAQ’s, or even virtual assistents using AI.
Bringing these additional channels online provides the customer with an instant answer and frees up contact centre agents to deal with the more complex enquiries that require human empathy. Ultimately this will result in a better customer experience, while freeing up time for the agents.
AI in Action
Over the last year, we have seen numerous examples of how contact centres have adapted to meet increased customer demand. This, even while agents have been working from home.
Organisations have stepped up their use of conversational AI to answer routine questions all while improving operational efficiency. This approach allows agents extra time to handle more of the urgent contacts. It enables them to focus on the higher value contacts.
For one business, we saw this approach result in 46% more calls being taken since June 2020. Additionally, they had a corresponding reduction of 50% in lost contacts while average handling times have been reduced.
Another high street retail group is now processing 62% of their customer contact through digital channels. This have resulted in 45 seconds saved on average per interaction. As a result, the agents can take an extra 10 calls per day, providing a better customer satisfaction.
Finally, a nationwide supply and servicing company is now using intelligent call routing for 94% of their calls. This has resulted in a 15% improvement in agent adherence and a 10% increase in agent utilisation.
Business Benefits of AI in the Contact Centre
As well as providing customers with more choice, using AI to manage additional digital channels removes the pressure from contact centre agents.
But that’s not all.
- Giving customers more choice, makes it easier for them to make contact using channels that they choose.
- Dealing with customers more efficiently leads to better brand sentiment and reputation.
- More efficient use of contact centre agents saves costs.
- Agents are more engaged and motivated because their work is more interesting, therefore they are more effective and provide a better service to those customers that really need it.
There is still a way to go
We have seen that the COVID-19 emergency has acted as a catalyst for change. And many contact centres have risen to the challenge.
Enabling agents to work from home, virtually overnight, was not a situation that anyone expected at the start of last year. While it has brought numerous difficulties, some have handled the change better than others.
The next challenge for most contact centres is to integrate new digital channels with the business’ existing legacy systems. Powered by technology such as conversational AI and virtual assistants that are already proven, they will empower agents to provide an even better service to customers.
A service that customers now expect.
Can a contact Centre benefit your business?
No matter the size of your business, if you are customer facing, then changes are high that the answer is yes.
Contact centres comes in all sizes and formats, and can be personalised and grow with your business.
Do you want to hear more about how a contact centre can transform your business?
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