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Remember four years ago when everyone was talking about chatbots? They were going to be the future of customer service, deflecting a huge percentage of calls away from ever-growing call centers.
These days, the best chatbots have succeed in chipping away at call volumes by handling simple queries online. This is great, but a rarity. The majority of chatbots have been mostly disappointing for both ROI and the customer experience, and contact centers globally are still struggling to keep up with call volumes.
You only have to look at the news to see customers struggling to get support during the COVID-19 outbreak. Where are the chatbots that were supposed to put a stop to all this?
Companies that want to offer robust customer support without compromising on profits are now investing in voice self-service in their contact centers.
Deploying chatbots, live chat and self-serve support portals have only made a small dent in call volumes. In fact, 11% of contact centres have actually seen an increase in calls after implementing these changes!
During the COVID outbreak, 57% of customers ranked phone support as their preferred method of contact. 65% of all customer interactions still happen on the phone.
Pushing customers through web chat is akin to saying you don’t want to talk. Not a good look.
How long do your agents waste on repetitive tasks that simply do not require human work?
Answering FAQs, identification and verification, updating customers’ account details, taking bookings or reservations… All of these tasks are perfect for automation.
You’ve set up online accounts, mobile apps, webchat, but your customers are still eating into agent time with queries that could be sorted just as well with AI.
Nobody likes to wait on hold.
But having enough staff on the front line to answer every call immediately is mostly impossible. Add a global pandemic into the mix and your customers could be waiting hours to talk to you.
Voice assistants pick up every call immediately, and they can easily route high-value, high-emotion calls directly to the agents when needed.
Go on, give your customers the support that they deserve.
Offering support only during business hours is a great way to show your customers you care, but only during business hours.
But staffing for 24/7 customer service is expensive, not to mention the additional infrastructure and operational costs incurred by keeping offices and lines open round-the-clock.
Voice assistants don’t sleep. They can answer every single call, day or night, resolving queries or taking down information to pass to your agents when they’re back in.
You write the scripts, train the agents and run QA on calls, but you can’t guarantee consistency in all conversations across your customer service estate.
Voice assistants deliver consistent experiences every time. They don’t even sound robotic. A voice assistant can have any voice you choose. Accent, tone and pronunciation can be customised to create a true brand voice to represent your company in its best light, every single time.
Voice assistants don’t need you to click buttons to select options. Built right, they don’t even require users to say specific keywords. Just speak naturally, in your own words, and get an issue resolved!
Automating voice interactions is four times more effective in reducing agent minutes than automating chat interactions.
Investing in voice self-service is a no-brainer.
Voice assistants answer every call immediately, no matter what time or day of the week, resulting in reduced call abandon rate. By automating time consuming, repetitive tasks they slash average handling time. And first call resolution is boosted by routing calls to the right place, every time.
Voice assistants even do their own after-call work so your agents don’t have to!
Being prepared for high demand often means you have agents waiting for the phone to ring. In times of peak demand, you may even hire seasonal staff to be on hand should they be needed.
Voice assistants are able to handle thousands of calls simultaneously, making them a great solution for peak times. But they can also sit quietly and wait for calls to come in, without costing you a penny.
Imagine if your agents took detailed notes on each call, marked them all up consistently and stored them in an easily browsable dashboard. The stuff of dreams, right?
Well dream no more. Voice assistants are able to record almost any data you want them to, and give this data back to you in any format you like.
This detailed conversational data can help organizations identify areas for improvement, track increases in specific topics to identify potential issues, and even pinpoint what training needs to be delivered to live agents to make them better at responding to customers.
Let’s face it, your call center agents don’t enjoy doing the same repetitive tasks day in, day out. Your best agents love helping people. They want to solve real problems for customers. You want them to create value for the company.
Automating repetitive tasks that are low value to the company, but high value to the customer will make your agents’ jobs significantly better. And happy agents means happy customers.
If you’ve ever been stuck talking to a conversational IVR, it’s understandable that you’re not convinced about using voice self-service.
It’s either the blandness of statements like:
If you’re having trouble with your credit card, say ‘credit card.’
Or the impossibility of being told to explain the reason you’re calling in a few words, but not knowing which words the IVR is programmed to listen out for.
But that is the technology of the past.
These days, voice assistants are able to hold natural conversations, understanding customers regardless of accent or background noise, with the short term memory to handle as much back-and-forth as it takes to get the job done.
Long story short, the technology is ready. Are you?
We’d love to give you a demonstration of our enterprise-ready voice assistant. Fill out your information below and we’ll be in touch to schedule your demo.