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Why IVR automation has failed you

The unmistakably robotic voice of Interactive Voice Response (IVR) systems has greeted customers calling the contact center since the 1970s. There’s a high chance you’ve interacted with an IVR, and if you’ve ever shouted ‘Agent!’ into your phone during this interaction, you’re not alone. Despite improvements in speech recognition and Natural Language Understanding (NLU), IVR […]

Reducing the impact of attrition in the contact center with customer-led voice assistants

The repetitive nature of an agent’s role, combined with a lack of development, high pressure, low pay, and unpleasant calls, are just some of the reasons the employee turnover rate in contact centers remains 30-45% above the average of other occupations. Attrition costs companies as much as $10,000 to $20,000 per contact center agent. In […]

How conversational assistants are delivering the best outcomes yet

My first adventures into voice automation were in the late 1990s, and while they served a purpose, the experience for the caller was fairly rudimentary. For the business, the costs were high, and the benefits were often disappointing. Since then, increasing processing power, clever engineering, and the spread of machine learning and AI capabilities have […]

Trustworthy robots? Building customer relationships with conversational assistants

In most cases, we trust technology to do its literal job. Every time you make a phone call or turn on your television, you expect that the technology will respond accordingly. You do A; therefore, the technology will do B. But this trust is often missing in interactions with conversational technologies. I remember using a […]

The 5 pillars of customer-led conversation

Previous generations of voice technology have created frustrating experiences for customers trying to resolve their problems on the phone.  Customers are all too familiar with having to repeat their date of birth, or account number multiple times, only to be met by an automated voice saying, “sorry, I didn’t quite get that, could you please […]

Achieving Zero Touch Resolution with Customer-led Conversations

Many companies have attempted to remove pressure on the contact center by investing heavily in digital self-service channels like apps, online account management services, FAQ sections, and chatbots. However, only 9% of customer queries are fully-resolved in digital self-service channels, and 71% of customers still prefer to phone. Regardless of the quality of digital self-service, […]

3 Common Voice Assistant Errors, and How to Avoid Them

If you’ve tried voice automation – via Siri, Alexa, or a conversational IVR – chances are, you’ve had a bad experience. Maybe you were misunderstood or not understood at all, maybe you had to keep repeating yourself or maybe you made a mistake and couldn’t get the damn machine to go back and amend it.  […]

Multi-turn conversations: What are they, and why do they matter for your customers?

When considering the different options for voice automation, the ability for a voice assistant to hold a multi-turn conversation (and do it well) is essential for customer service. But what are multi-turn conversations, and why do they matter? What is a conversational turn? Many of us have grown accustomed to using voice automation in our […]

Why you need to invest in voice automation instead of call deflection

In the past decade, companies have increasingly tried to deflect calls through automated text channels. A number of these companies have tried to eliminate calls altogether by making their phone number hard or impossible to access, forcing customers through self-serving FAQs and chatbots. Chances are you’ve experienced this before, and at some point likely found […]