Customer service agents not only have to resolve customer queries accurately but also need to do that in the least amount of time. Average Handling Time (AHT), therefore, is one of the most important metrics to determine if a contact centre’s service is productive or not. It impacts a customer’s satisfaction directly and is a key determinant of the overall customer experience. However, even the best customer service agents need help at times.
While handling complex queries, customer service agents have to put customers on hold to search for answers across multiple systems and documents, which usually is tedious and takes time. This increases AHT, frustrates the customer, and increases the likelihood of customer attrition – which in turn affects the company’s bottom line. This is where agent assist bots play a key role.
Most customer service departments today use customer-facing chatbots. According to a report, 80% of the surveyed companies are or will be using customer-facing chatbots by 2020. These chatbots are usually equipped with AI and Natural Language Processing (NLP), and act as the first line of support agents. Complex conversations which need a human touch are transferred to a human agent.
But a chatbot’s applications in customer service doesn’t have to be limited to just customer-facing interactions.
Agent assist bots act as a companion to human customer service agents. They are programmed to work alongside live agents and provide customer information and smart suggestions to humans as per the query and the conversational flow. Moreover, they can also be programmed to handle the cumbersome, tedious, and time-consuming tasks of the agents like searching for information and automating CRM data entry. Agent assist bots are fast becoming a critical addition to deliver superior and more efficient customer service.
Whenever human agents handle customer conversations via live chats or calls, agent assist bots analyze customers’ responses and identify their intents. This enables them to map the query to relevant topics and provide the needed information to agents to deliver faster resolutions.
At the same time, they can identify customers’ profiles and assess whether they are repeat callers or not by automatically analyzing the company’s customer database and relaying the information to the agent. Moreover, they ensure that the agents never hit a dead end during the conversation. When live agents do not know the answer for a specific query, chatbots provide immediate contextual suggestions.
A majority of a human agent’s time is spent on manual search. Upon an agent’s request, agent assist bots can automatically connect to their knowledge bases, CRM and back-end systems to extract relevant articles and documents, and present it to the agent seamlessly.
Whenever customer self-service interactions escalate to a human agent, an agent assist bot automatically provides the entire conversation history including sentiment scores and contextual information. They also suggest knowledge articles the agent can go through to fulfill the customer’s request. Additionally, agent assist bots can also help agents in tedious and time-consuming activities such as capturing customer information, post-conversation form filling and surveys, and thereby enhance the overall agent productivity.
Manual data entry into CRM is a huge productivity roadblock for customer service agents. An agent assist bot mines audio calls/textual conversations whenever an agent speaks/chats with a customer. It captures key notes, details, insights from the customer and enters the data automatically into the CRM system.
Agents can also have quick chat with the agent assist bot and ask it to update/change the CRM records with the provided specifications.
Learn More: How Are Chatbots Boosting The CRM Adoption Rates
Customer service agents and agent assist bots are complimentary in many ways. They have the same goals – improve customer experience and reduce the amount of time required to handle an interaction, but have different capabilities, which when synchronized can take customer service to the next level. While the agent can interact with the customers and make them feel at ease and comfortable, agent assist bots with their AI capabilities can extract and provide highly contextual and accurate information in real-time, enhancing the productivity of the company’s customer service.
If you’d like to learn more about agent assist bots, please feel free to get in touch with one of our contact center and chatbot experts for a personalized consultation. You may also be interested in exploring our enterprise chatbot builder platform (BotCore) which can help you build customer service and agent assist bots for your organization.