Conversational AI: Is it the future of the contact center?
While it may not replace human agents, conversational AI is most definitely changing the way contact centers operate. For many companies, the technology is simply too important to ignore; to important to skip in the quest to provide the best customer experiences possible.
Cloud contact center company 8x8, Inc recently announced the findings from its 2023 State of Conversational AI in the Contact Center report. Key findings reveal that contact center and IT leaders believe conversational AI is the future of the contact center (with 80% of respondents saying these capabilities will be a must-have in the near future, and 41% agreeing that if companies will fall behind if don’t adopt these capabilities).
The study surveyed more than 300 IT and contact center business leaders in the U.S., UK, and Canada to arrive at its conclusions, which included that a whopping 99% of surveyees plan to dedicate more spending on contact center operations over the next year, with much of that investment going towards adopting or increasing automation. That said, the research does seem to underscore how AI has already helped with automation; of those respondents already using the capabilities, 92% reported that it has resolved customer issues faster, reduced effort for agents (87%) and lowered the overall cost of contact center operations (53%).
The study also noted that conversational AI complements the human touch; it doesn’t full-on replace it. Organizations currently using conversational AI in the contact center are doing so to improve customer service capabilities (62%), streamline internal workflows (42%), improve customer satisfaction (36%), and reduce customer wait times. Only 6% of adopters are attempting to use the technology as a means to reduce employee and agent headcount.
“As we can see from the findings of the ‘State of Conversational AI in the Contact Center’ report, it’s important to understand the needs and requirements of organizations, including how they actually use the different technologies available to them,” noted Hunter Middleton, Chief Product Officer at 8x8, Inc. “We are committed to working closely with our customers to deliver AI-driven tools and resources, such as 8x8 Intelligent Customer Assistant, to help drive their digital transformation and business success initiatives.”
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