AI promises contact centers a satisfying customer experience, cost savings, and greater efficiency. It’s no wonder companies looking to improve their customer service are increasingly embracing technology.
The industry is undeniably fast-paced; according to our extensive internal research, we expect it to be worth $66 billion by 2027. What’s clear is that companies need AI to stay competitive.
2023 is a promising year for technological innovation in contact centers. Here, we look at three of the most exciting trends in the industry. Read on to learn how these trends impact your company’s communicates with its customers.
Trend 1: Large Language Models herald a new era for contact centers
Large Language Models (LLMs) are the talk of the technology world. Have you heard of ChatGPT? They’ll still be making waves in 2023.
Ask today’s most popular LLMs to produce readable, human-sounding, high-quality content in seconds. That’s true whether you want to create blog posts, translations, poems, or even website code. Platforms like ChatGPT show the beginnings of what’s possible with artificial intelligence.
But it’s not a perfect AI utopia yet. The technology has at least one notable drawback. LLMs provide general information extracted from a wealth of freely available online resources. They structure this source information according to the query before presenting it to the user.
They’re great for surface-level content, often getting the gist of the topic right. Dig a little deeper, however, and you’ll find that the AI’s answers are flawed or, in some areas, just plain wrong. You can find some of the more… curious ChatGPT responses that online users laugh at rather than with the AI platform.
Now let’s get back to the contact center. From an employee/customer relationship perspective, providing or receiving incorrect or inappropriate information can spell disaster. Generic LLMs would quickly reach their limits in a situation that requires specialized expertise or company-specific knowledge.
And yet, recent LLM developments represent a milestone in AI. Clever use of technology can improve the quality of conversations and increase the efficiency of any company’s contact center.
“LLMs might be used to respond to generic customer queries or to transform employee information management. However, this requires that the model’s answers become more reliable and do not provide incorrect information.”
Head of Voice at ERGO
So how does it work? Realizing the potential of LLMs in the contact center requires a scalable process for connecting technology and customer conversations. This requires the validation of information gathered from real conversations. This enables the automation of the entire customer service process, resulting in a better customer experience in the contact center.
“Large language models will fundamentally change contact centers in 2023. Parloa has always been a champion of combining the best AI components in a single platform. Thanks to the use of advanced LLM technologies, the quality of the dialog will experience a breakthrough and Parloa will become an essential link between the customer and the contact center.”
Co-Founder, CPO, and CTO of Parloa
Trend 2: Automated customer service for a seamless customer experience
Contact centers are under pressure. They are handling an increasing volume of daily inquiries while dealing with skills shortages, high employee turnover rates, and increasing cost pressures.
Some companies are meeting these challenges head-on by embracing the technological advances represented by conversational AI. As a result, they’re automating customer service and dramatically improving the service quality.
“Service automation is more than just a trend this year. It’s gaining momentum and becoming a must-have for every company.”
Director Customer Service at HSE
Automation can handle high volumes of service requests quickly and efficiently – a core value. Companies typically use voice bots to achieve this. In addition, they use artificial intelligence and natural language recognition to interpret and respond to a caller’s request in real-time.
“In the coming year, we plan to use conversational AI to address individual service processes that experience peak call volumes. We’re working on more choices, automation, and alternatives, such as self-service, to reduce and eliminate wait times.”
Process and Project Management Officer at Swiss Life Germany
But it’s not just about automating processes and offering self-service – both of which undoubtedly make contact centers more efficient. Perhaps more importantly, customers are demanding high-quality interactions.
It’s not enough for AI to recognize the intent. All processes and technical components must be aligned to seamlessly handle customer requests.
“Let’s say customers want to change their address. This request needs to be recognized and authenticated. Then the new street names and number sequences need to be recognized. This is only possible if customer service is viewed as a complete system, with all components working together.”
Head of Product Portfolio at infinit.cx
This year, 2023, will set new standards for high-quality automated dialog in contact centers. And it’s not just the contact centers that are leading the way. Instead, companies should consider AI in the holistic interaction of infrastructures, departments, processes, and people. Only then can this disruptive technology benefit their customer service.
Trend 3: Voice Biometrics identifies customers by “voiceprint”
The benefits of using voice biometrics in contact centers include
- Increased efficiency and cost savings: The technology takes over parts of the customer authentication process and reduces the workload of call center agents.
- Improved customer experience: as a result of reduced waiting and handling times.
- Privacy: Protects callers’ personal information.
Increased security at the content center is the most significant potential for this technology. Voice biometrics reduces the opportunity for fraud, identity theft, and access to sensitive data. Combined with other security measures, such as multi-factor authentication, it can provide greater customers and agent security in the contact center.
Clearly, voice biometrics has the potential to change contact center operations for the better. But technology also has its challenges.
“Developments in voice synthesis pose a risk to biometrics. The easier it is to imitate natural voices, the more challenging biometric authentication becomes.”
Head of Voice at ERGO
The year 2023 holds muchpromise for contact centers regarding technological advancements. As a result, the opportunity to take customer service to a new level has never been better.
If you want to explore this brave new world, contact us.