The way we interact with each other seems to be changing every couple of years – which doesn’t exactly make things easy for customer service managers! Luckily, long-gone are the days when customers would be left hanging for hours listening to Cisco´s terrible Michael Bolton breakdown.
As everything is going online, the playing field is changing. It’s just a matter of time before artificial intelligence can take the lead on customer interactions. And that day may be sooner than we think. But are chatbots really poised to take over and edge humans out?
There are definitely benefits of using chatbots instead of humans. No minimum wage to dish out, no health and safety training day to arrange, and they don’t phone in sick. But there’s nothing like real human interaction. That’s just a fact! This is why businesses need a combination of the two. The bots can help agents and visitors service questions and assist, but we don’t see them ever replacing humans. Bots are still learning, and there´s progress across the industry with products such as Microsoft Bot Framework and Googlebot, but there’s still a long road ahead.
Chatbots are precisely what the name suggests – software designed to interact with human users, perform basic tasks, and simulate conversations using a set of basic rules. Now with the introduction of AI, a bot can learn from user interactions – giving it the capability to manage more complex conversations and interactions, and complete a broader range of relevant tasks. Not long ago, a bot could only ask what your name was and respond to direct answers. But now a bot can address several variables and has a better idea of context. With multiple levels in a conversation, bots can detect emotional states (to some extent). Emotional intelligence is the idea of understanding and comprehending emotions and responding to them. Think of them like an emoji generator where it arranges every thought and feeling to a specific emoji and reacts accordingly – such as passing the customer over to a human.
Bots need to continue learning from customer interactions. If bots don’t learn or add intelligent features, they will never improve. That’s why uWebChat is different. We´re entering an era of interaction attraction vs. interruption – where customer service centres need to balance automation for efficiency’s sake, without frustrating the customer. Using Microsoft Bot Framework, we’ve created a bot with the ability to speak, listen, understand, and learn from your users with Azure Cognitive Services. Our bots learn from our agents’ responses to questions, log their responses, and if an agent isn’t available, they can pull up the answers and guide the conversation. Online interactions are still a minefield for many customers. Trust is a big issue when conducting anything online, and many consumers still prefer human contact. That’s why it’s good to have options when interacting with customers and offer both.