A relationship between a seller and a buyer has evolved into a much more complex association. Days are long gone when once the selling has been affected, the association used to terminate and both the parties will part ways. Today, the real litmus test is after sales services and customer care services. Once the product is sold or the service has been rendered by the customer, the communication channel does not cease to rather it widens up to prolong the relationship lifecycle by ensuring that customer is satisfied with his ‘connection’ which the company. So if things went astray, customer care is the first line of defense by a company to tackle the issues of a customer. And with technology disseminating far and wide in modern times, customer services has not remained untouched by it. From help desk software to live support chat sessions, organizations have understood how heavily its image depends on customer support and hence aide of technology has become an integrated part of it for better reliability and tractability.
And when we take about rapid flourishing of technology, the most significant leap of 21st century has been Artificial Intelligence. As various industries are embracing machine language and Artificial Intelligence, the burning question at this juncture is will AI replace humans from customer services for good? Let’s break it down bit by bit.
TWO SIDES OF THE COIN
We humans still prefer to establish a connection with another human to discuss and establish a communication path even if it’s a scathing remark over a bad product/service or a simple query. We want someone who can practically read our minds over a call or a live chat support session and understand the concern. But as the intricacies of customer problems have increased, the customers have started to feel that customer services are falling behind and they tend to be slow. Enters Artificial intelligence (Yes, the one you probably associate with a Tom Cruise movie). AI, though a relatively nascent concept when we talk about it in the context of customer services, yet is aiding to tackle this mismatching of expectation between a customer and a provider. Using the power of chatbots, automated mails, texts and voice analysis tool which have now been integrated in modern day help desk software, the rudimentary queries (which account for 51% of the whole lot) are been handled by machine learning so that the customer service agent can focus his/her attention to more complex problems streamlining the whole process. Result? The productivity skyrockets, human resources are utilized for better purposes and an organization is able to distribute its resources and focus on bigger and better things. Yet there is a downside to it.
Like stated before, when we punch in a customer care number on our mobiles or open a live chat support, we expect a human to be on the other end trying to make his or her way through our problems. So with human out of the picture, the customer feels disconnected to the whole process. Another downside of AI is that since it’s is in nascent stage, the implementation is rather expensive and every organization cannot afford to scrap already existing setup and start all over again. Moreover, AI can’t work on a standalone basis, at least as of now. At some point, intervention of human is required for understanding the issue.
It is without a doubt a gospel truth of modern times that AI will evolve and take over plenty of tasks in customer service sphere which are currently looked after by human resource. But it will be a huge leap and a mere conjecture that AI will replace human for good! Rather it will create an environment where humans and machines will be incorporated in help desk software and work in tandem to help customers experience a streamlined dispute resolution process!