How AI Adds Relevance to Customer Service With Empathy and Language Skills
How many of us feel that it is near impossible to reach a human voice when we need support from a corporation for a product, or service, we purchased from them?
And if, perchance, we do manage to reach a human voice in customer service, we wish we had not bothered, so uninspiring is the service?
Customer service is a balance
Customer service is a difficult balancing act. Not only does the server need knowledge about the products and services on offer currently as well as in the past, he/she needs to also possess the maturity to handle often agitated customers without getting themselves personally involved in the situation. In other words, they need to understand that the customer is calling because help is needed and not because he wishes to abuse the server. And, of course, the servers should be adept at handling multiple tools and applications at the same time, while trying to ensure they do not take up too much time on the transaction, which will add to the cost for the company.
With its 24×7 operations, oWorkers not only understands but has the wherewithal to support customers from around the globe for all their client projects.
AI-based technologies are being adopted
It is no surprise that companies are increasingly exploring the possibility of enhancing the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) based technologies in this critical area. Chatbot features have been in use in customer service for many years. Customers, however, have continued to seek out a voice to speak with or a live human to chat with despite the presence of chatbots.
AI-based voice interaction systems, armed with advances in technology that can impart a range of feelings, such as empathy, as well as a level of linguistic capability, are being experimented with. Several banks in the Gulf region are testing out customer response systems that are able to identify emotions such as frustration, anger and sadness. Mashreq Bank, one of the largest banks in the Middle East, and VISA, are understood to be basing their experimentation on a technology developed by a fintech startup.
It seems that in most cases, in blind tests, the customer has been unable to detect that the voice interacting with him/her is not that of a live, present, human. The same results have been found for live online interactions, like through a chat function.
The above notwithstanding, the technology does not claim to be perfect. Natural Language Processing, or NLP, the science of dealing with the myriad nuances of the spoken word, continues to be a work in progress. However, important advances are being made.
With its deep relationships with technology companies across the spectrum, oWorkers has the ability to engage the latest and best technologies for client projects, a privilege that clients can never get on their own.
The touch and feel of AI-based service
Imagine that you recently had an interaction with a service representative named Peter and rated it highly. Since a non-human representative does not need to sleep or eat, you can possibly connect to the same representative each time you call, weekday or weekend, early morning or late night, and have a feeling of continuity in your interaction, further augmenting the satisfaction.
The AI embedded in the technology will ensure that you interact with Peter each time you reach out.
The AI, on its part, will keep on learning and getting better and better with its access to a vast database of past interactions, along with each new interaction that happens. Improvement will be never-ending.
Implementation of AI and related technologies can be done effectively in the super secure facilities & protocols of oWorkers. The environment is conducive to maintain data security with its ISO (27001:2013 & 9001:2015) certifications and GDPR compliance.
Personalized service can be offered
We have already seen how you could connect back with the same representative when AI systems are in use.
You could also be responded to in an accent that is familiar to you based on where you are calling from, as well as your history. Language ceases to be a limitation. Whatever is the preference of the caller, the server will be able to seamlessly speak in that language. Of course, there will always be limitations, such as dialects and cultural differences. Spanish spoken in Argentina will be different from that spoken in Mexico. But that could be true even in interacting with a live human unless your service representative is your sibling or partner or someone as close.
Gender-based service can also be delivered easily, if it is found that customers in general, or certain specific customers, have leanings, creating experiences that will create a sense of personalization and importance for customers calling in.
Whether through AI interactions or with real people, oWorkers has supported a diverse workforce from its inception, which has enabled it to organically build the capability of offering support to clients in over 20 languages. These language skills are also useful in setting up automated AI-based customer interface systems.
Integrated with social media
The technology that is being currently experimented with provides ‘plug and play’ features that make integration with social media platforms a simple task. Social media, as we know, has become an integral part of reaching out to customers as well as enabling them to reach back for service and issues.
Once implemented, the technology can be used in multiple ways to raise the bar both for the company as well as for their customers. It could be used for informing customers about new services. It could be used to reach out to customers on a personalized basis and update them about the state of their account, such as bad credit, instead of the irritating impersonal messages like “if your account balance is below the defined threshold, please deposit funds immediately to avoid being levied service charges.”
Being an enterprise application, the technology lends itself to a client-specific implementation.
What does that mean?
It means that while many banks could be using the application, each will appear to be unique to customers as it will be set-up specifically for that company who will also be able to brand as per their own brand guidelines and marketing requirements.
With a track record of 8 years, oWorkers has kept pace with changing trends in the BPO industry and is well equipped to handle transactions that are current, such as those requiring engagement with social media platforms.
Leveling the playing field
The capacity to invest has always created a divide between the corporate haves and have-nots. Big banks and financial institutions, with deep pockets, tended to lead innovation in the sector through technology investments while smaller players like community banks and credit unions either watched from the sidelines or picked up stripped-down versions of the technology. As a result, they were not able to challenge the status quo and the pecking order in the industry remained unchanged.
With these technologies, the financial sector seems to be ushering in a new age of a playing field that is more level, and where institutions with lighter pockets can also have access to the latest and best technologies making a difference to the way they offer customer service.
oWorkers, for all their client assignments, are armed with a critical asset; the ability to hire the best resources. It has achieved the status of being a desirable employer in the communities it has set up delivery centers in, which brings in a steady flow of walk-in applicants. This also equips oWorkers to cater to short-term spikes in client volumes; it can hire almost 100 additional resources with a notice of 48 hours.