Tags: AI, chatbot, contact center, customer experience, digital interaction, Enterprise Connect, Enterprise Connect 2023, human interaction, smart insights, Webex AI, Webex Contact Center, webex-native agent
The next normal is here and customer experience has become that much harder for businesses to get it right. Customer expectations have gone up, while budgets are shrinking. Everyone is feeling the pain.
Customers expect a business to instantly respond to their needs while solving problems within minutes. Failure to do so could mean lost revenue or even lost customers for the company. There is also the added pressure of knowing everything about a customer and personalizing the experience. Not once, but across the entire customer journey because customer experience is a relationship, not just a single event.
Given these growing demands, agents and supervisors are challenged to keep up while keeping customers happy. And for the back office and IT staff, it’s about building and delivering these customer experiences at scale and being resilient to ensure the best possible outcomes.
At Webex, we recognize these competing pressures and have solutions to help our customers solve for this customer experience imperative in this next normal. It starts with our vision of empowering companies to deliver smart, proactive, and personalized experiences across the customer journey. We do this by leveraging the full power of human interactions combined with digital interactions, underpinned by the Webex Platform and our AI capabilities to deliver unrivaled experiences for users.
I’d like to take a moment to share five guiding principles which will help bring our vision to life:
Everything starts with the customer. They ultimately decide what they want, when they want it, and how to engage with a business. This is why customer choice has become so important and why businesses must create the right experience.
In this new age and with the rise of digital, many customers want to engage using social channels like the ones they use every day like Twitter, Instagram, or chat apps like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, just to name a few. And when they do connect via their preferred channel, they want the choice of self-service options like an automated two-way conversation, a chatbot, or the choice to speak to a live human agent over the phone. No matter what the customer chooses – businesses must be ready with flexible and seamless options. This is where Webex comes in to deliver an integrated customer experience across digital and human interactions.
As I mentioned earlier, budgets are shrinking, and every business wants to reduce cost of delivery. This is where automation comes in and can help scale your business. With Webex, we’ve acquired AI and cloud communications platform companies and have integrated those resources into our product to deliver on this. We’re continuing to bring these capabilities to bear to improve that self-service experience.
End customers are demanding more human-like virtual interactions and a quicker path to resolution. It’s also not good enough to just virtualize, we must help companies continually learn and adapt. To that end, we’re applying our assets to build self-learning contact center systems so that we’ll also propose new flows that can be virtualized, or improved “answers” to frequent topics so that your interactions continue to be “as up-to-date and delightful” as a contact with a well-trained human agent.
Given that businesses need to know everything about a customer and context about issues so they can quickly resolve – data and smart insights are essential to short cut to “the best resolution”.
To be more proactive about customer escalations and to even prevent them from occurring – we are excited to announce our new AI-powered Topic Analysis capability in Webex Contact Center. Topic Analysis surfaces key reasons customers are calling into the contact center by aggregating data about interactions from the entirety of the contact center’s data and extracting trends for business analysts, allowing them to proactively act to meet these needs before customers need to call.
Topic analysis for real-time trend identification is just a first step towards additional capabilities to provide customers proactive suggestions for topics that can be virtualized with high confidence.
Every company still needs human agents. As fast as companies want to virtualize, humans are still needed for novel or complex scenarios, high-value customers, and more. We need to continue to support those humans as they engage with their critical customer contacts.
For example, imagine a cheat sheet that contains a history of topics that the customer has previously engaged, what their sentiment during each interaction, and which resolutions/follow-ups yielded the highest positive sentiment so that when the human agent engages with the customer next, they can gauge how irate the customer would be and how best to perhaps handle this.
Similarly, we’ll be investing in bubbling trending topics up to supervisors not just to guide how they can best train their agents, but also to potentially get ahead of service issues. If “commerce transactions on websites” is a trending topic – this may signal not just a memo to all agents with additional details, but an escalation to IT since a core business system may be down!
We are also excited to announce the upcoming Webex-native Agent Answers. Agent Answers listens and acts as a silent, real-time coach for the human agent, surfacing knowledge base articles and helpful information the agent can instantly provide the customer in real-time.
The larger Webex portfolio has focused heavily on making it easy to set up and get going with Webex. We’re bringing that simplification here to Webex Contact Center as well. Contact centers are complex, so we’re going to focus on making the basics easy. Our goal is to allow companies of any size to get their contact center going. Our low-code approach to customer journey orchestration is part of that strategy. And we’ll continue to evolve how we’re helping businesses set up and continually optimize their Contact Centers, so they can deliver maximum Customer Satisfaction at a minimal cost.
As you can see, I shared a lot with you today about what’s possible with Webex to maximize your customer experience in the next normal. I hope you are as excited as I am about the innovation ahead with our purpose-built AI solutions for the future. To learn more, I encourage you to visit the Webex Contact Center webpage.
Check out my 3-part blog series where I look more closely at the role of AI for the contact center:
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