Couldn’t attend Transform 2022? Check out all the top sessions in our on-demand library now! Look here.
Business leaders are constantly evaluating how technology can better meet the needs of their customers and employees.
As AI technology advances, companies are recognizing the huge potential to improve customer and employee experiences and positively impact their bottom line. That’s why more than half of the leaders invest accordingly, with plans to increase AI budgets in customer experience by at least 25% next year.
When used in the right places, AI greatly increases efficiency and satisfaction within a company. For example, AI can automate many parts of a customer and employee journey, enabling faster response times without sacrificing personalized, people-centric experiences.
A key focus for businesses, however, is determining where exactly to deploy AI so that the technology can meet internal and external needs without creating additional work for employees or causing unnecessary frustration for customers who really need to talk to a human.
Companies that scale quickly are pressured to minimize costs while generating value, and those who find out where best to deploy AI as a solution are better prepared for success. Here are some pitfalls to avoid.
Thinking workers will automatically stick around in a down market
Many companies are currently working with lean teams and cannot afford to lose top talent. Progressive leaders have quickly adapted to use AI in a way that eliminates repetitive basic work and allows employees to focus on more intellectually engaging work. By making this intentional shift, companies can increase employee satisfaction and improve output.
To get started on eliminating these tedious and mundane projects, companies need to assess where AI and automation can increase efficiency and optimize workflows.
One place to start: Enable employee experience managers with click-to-run tools that can easily and quickly create experiences with built-in automation without writing a single line of code. This automation can handle basic requests like “how do I reset my password?” and free up time for more creative, strategic work.
Another application is in HR departments. These departments often use AI to assess job openings for potential hiring bias and to analyze labor market data when calculating competitive wage rates. Not only does this speed up the hiring timeline, but it also allows HR teams to be more involved in other parts of the process that shouldn’t be overlooked. AI gives employees more time to deliver the best people-centric experiences, such as conducting quality conversations with internal hiring managers and spending more time with external candidates.
Keeping an old-fashioned 9-5 mentality
Companies can no longer provide “good enough” customer service, leaving people waiting hours or even days for responses. That just isn’t enough anymore, as customers expect easy, accessible and personalized support from every brand they interact with. In reality, 61% of customers are willing to do their business elsewhere after just one bad experience; 76% after two.
Businesses can use AI as the always-on tool in the customer journey to keep up with rising expectations for modern communication channels, 24/7 response expectations, the desire to keep up with self-service and tailored personalization.
There is an opportunity for enterprises to leverage messaging, amplify interactions with AI, and extend AI to help with most service needs. AI can also reduce resolution time, such as processing routing queries based on skill level, agent availability, and request priority. Customers are then matched with the most qualified agents to resolve their issue. This is especially important because enterprise-sized companies need scalable, flexible processes to handle massive volumes of calls.
Of 65% of customers Expecting AI to save them time, companies are adapting their customer experience so that most interactions start with (and potentially be resolved by) a bot. For example game platform Roblox uses AI to respond to requests related to their specific game currency in different languages. By automatically solving simple repetitive questions, bots increase agent productivity and allow them to focus on solving more complex tickets.
However, it is important not to rely solely on AI.
While problems such as password reset can be solved with AI, there are still many problems that require a human. The biggest mistake a company can make is not properly training their bots to escalate problems quickly, efficiently and with the necessary context so that a human can come up with a solution.
Sticking to legacy technology systems
While some companies can easily adapt and run in a digital-first world, traditional enterprises are often tied to rigid, existing legacy systems that took many years and a large budget to build. These inflexible and fragmented system structures can keep companies from improving the core customer journey with new tech stacks and tools.
AI is an opportunity for enterprises to break that status quo, as it can help rejuvenate rigid infrastructure, bring greater scalability, and empower teams to address more complex use cases, helping both the customer and the customer. employee experience is improved.
The biggest challenge of the update is applying the technology between broken channels and rigid systems that can’t change and run as fast as the company’s growth requires. While the iteration of tech stacks won’t be completed in one day, companies can start making incremental changes. They can replace some of old legacy stacks with an easy-to-deploy solution that uses AI to pull data from other parts of the business.
For example, a company could use AI to revamp its knowledge framework to not only address common problems, but also alert employees when there are gaps in their content base.
trust pilot, for example, has done just that to grow, build, manage, and leverage knowledge to ward off tickets and improve agent capacity. The company implemented a knowledge base program to organically drive customers to solutions and proactively provide content when a problem is detected. This investment in self-service led to a 62% yoy Growth in customers choosing self-service, 98% self-service success rate and 1.272% annual ROI on the platform.
Customer and Employee Experience: A Positive AI Outlook
While customer and employee expectations have changed, business leaders remain focused on driving bottom-line growth.
With AI, companies can deliver engaging experiences that retain employees and build strong customer relationships in an age of fleeting loyalty. AI has enormous potential to meet customer needs without sacrificing the personal, human touch.
By pushing boundaries, thinking in new ways, and letting go of legacy systems, companies can embrace AI — even in small ways — to make a huge impact.
Jon Aniano is SVP, product at Zendesk.
Welcome to the VentureBeat Community!
DataDecisionMakers is where experts, including the technical people who do data work, can share data-related insights and innovation.
If you want to read about the latest ideas and up-to-date information, best practices and the future of data and data technology, join DataDecisionMakers.
You might even consider contributing an article yourself!
Read more from DataDecisionMakers