As customer service and support organizations look to embrace digital and continuously adapt, there are many questions and challenges they’ll need to work through. At the beginning of 2021, Gartner identified1 that, “The customer service and support function will see radical changes in 2021 in an ongoing response to the effects of the pandemic. These changes will force service organizations to face multiple dilemmas around customers, strategy, organization and technology.” “However, overcoming these dilemmas will prompt service to transform from a cost center to a relationship-oriented profit center.”
As an autonomous contact center, Replicant is designed to meet the evolving needs of contact centers through voice AI. Here’s how Replicant helps contact centers navigate these 10 dilemmas, play a larger role in owning the customer relationship, and driving business growth.
Human and/or thing customers
In the future, your customer may not be a human. The Internet of Things (IoT) has enabled devices to collect data and communicate with each other. Devices can now take actions on behalf of humans. For example, making a purchase or requesting service. Companies will need to adapt to serving things, in addition to humans.
Use Replicant to service any number of human and thing customers
Regardless of the type of customer you’re serving, Replicant’s Thinking MachineTM is able to verbally communicate with both humans and machines. Voice acts as a universal language across humans and machines. If a device isn’t able to verbally communicate with the Thinking Machine though, Replicant can easily integrate with other systems through APIs.
When humans and things are customers, contact centers also need to be prepared to handle an increase in customer requests. Using AI, Replicant enables contact centers to elastically scale their customer service capacity with demand. Whether you’re receiving hundreds or millions of calls a day, the Thinking Machine will respond to all of them immediately.
Service journey and/or life journey
Instead of focusing on just the customer service journey, customer service organizations will start to play a role in the customer’s life journey. By connecting service, sales, and marketing, companies can become a part of a customer’s life. Companies that take this approach are positioned to create more revenue and customer loyalty.
Leverage Replicant’s voice AI to provide value across the customer life journey
There’s many possibilities for how companies can leverage voice AI to engage with customers outside of the customer service interaction and make their lives easier. The Thinking Machine doesn’t just resolve inbound customer questions and issues. It can upsell and cross-sell, giving customers a personalized sales experience and enabling you to capture more of your customer’s business. The Thinking Machine can even execute outbound calls, giving you the ability to proactively engage and share information with customers. Lastly, Replicant automatically transcribes and tags calls to turn unstructured call data into actionable insights. You can now understand what callers ask about most or have the most issues with and use that to shape your product or service.
Service channels and/or multiexperience
Customers expect to be able to interact with a brand across physical and digital properties. Brands should remember them, know their customer history, and continue conversations across channels. This shift in how companies think about interacting with customers will result in a consistent customer experience across all modalities and devices and higher customer satisfaction.
Craft a multiexperience spanning voice, SMS, and web with Replicant
Replicant gives you a head start with crafting a multiexperience. Aside from voice, you’ll also be able to service your customers through SMS and web. A customer interaction that starts on the phone can end over text. Having these different methods of engagement enables customers to seamlessly move from one modality or device to another.
Reactive and/or proactive
Automation and AI are enabling companies to do more with the same or fewer amount of agents. By collecting and analyzing customer data, companies can identify times when customers are likely to contact them and proactively reach out. When you’re anticipating customer needs and meeting them before they contact you, companies will be able to reduce contact volume and increase customers’ appreciation toward the brand.
Use Replicant to proactively alert customers
Replicant automates outbound calls, which makes it possible for companies to proactively communicate with customers at scale. You can easily and efficiently share updates and important information. For example, telecommunications providers can let customers know when service has been restored after an outage.
Assisted service and/or self-service
Although companies have invested in self-service, customers continue to contact companies through live channels. This could be because it’s difficult to locate the self-service options, or customers find that the options in the knowledge library, for example, don’t meet their unique situation. There’s also still a long way for self-service channels to go in order to be truly effective.
“Migrating contact volume from assisted to self-service channels, upgrading legacy contact center technology and automating customer service processes — all of which fall under digital channels and capabilities were rated the top three most important priorities in 2021,” as surveyed by Gartner2. As companies make this transition, it’s important to understand the types of interactions and customers that best fit each channel. This will help you strike a balance between these two types of channels and ensure they’re used effectively.
Resolve 90% of Tier-1 customer calls with Replicant
Voice remains a primary customer service channel, with 57% of customers ranking call support as their initial channel preference. Many companies use IVRs to offer self-service over the phone. Unfortunately, IVRs create a poor customer experience and even cause companies to lose business.
Replicant Voice is a self-service solution that uses conversational voice AI to solve — not deflect — 90% of Tier-1 issues without agent intervention. Unlike most automated service options, Replicant Voice doesn’t require humans to learn how to use it or to respond in “robotic” ways. Customers can now truly get a resolution on their own by speaking with AI as they normally would.
Service cost center and/or relationship profit center
In order to gain a competitive advantage or simply survive, customer service organizations are starting to move from being a cost center to a profit center. With more customers moving to digital and self-service channels, customer growth and retention can increasingly be driven by customer service. Gartner anticipates1 “By 2025, 40% of customer service organizations will become profit centers by becoming de facto leaders in digital customer engagement.”
Design Replicant’s Thinking Machine to generate revenue by cross-selling and upselling
Promoting products, services, and upgrades no longer relies on a live agent. The Thinking Machine can intelligently suggest related products and add-ons to customers. If customers aren’t interested, they can easily decline. But if customers are interested, you’ve just earned more revenue without lifting a finger.
Service department and/or customer teams
As more routine and transactional tasks are automated, agents will need to level up their skills and expertise to execute more complicated tasks. To achieve this, customer service organizations need to restructure their teams. You’ll need to bring together cross-functional teams that work on customer well-being across different segments, like industry or product type.
Quickly automate tasks with Replicant so you can restructure your organization around customer teams
You can accelerate your move toward customer teams by automating high-volume, repetitive customer calls with Replicant. It takes just a few weeks to implement Replicant and have its Thinking Machine answering calls.
Work from anywhere and/or contact center
COVID-19 forced companies to challenge the contact center model. Companies realized the benefits of remote work and proved customer service could still run smoothly without a physical office. Knowing contact centers no longer rely on agents coming into a physical office, customer service leaders need to consider whether they want to continue with a 100% work from anywhere model, a 100% contact center model, or a hybrid.
Create a more flexible contact center model by combining human agents and Replicant
While it’s been proven that contact centers can successfully operate without a brick-and-mortar location, relying entirely on human agents still leaves contact centers susceptible to not having enough agent capacity. Agents might call out sick or quit suddenly, and there will always be unanticipated spikes in call volume.
When contact centers use both Replicant and live agents, they can flexibly adjust customer service capacity as demand increases or decreases. With AI acting as the first line of defense for all calls, customers won’t experience a wait time — even when you don’t have enough agents or experience a surge in customer issues. Plus, harnessing the power of humans and AI enables contact centers to scale more efficiently and at lower costs.
Employee and/or freelance/flex
There’s more channels than ever for customers to receive help and find information. As more customers choose to self-assist, they’re turning to independent experts and channels. For example, customers might go to Google or YouTube first to get help, instead of your website. Gartner predicts3:
By 2025, customers will pay a freelance customer service expert to resolve 75% of their customer service issues.
As more customers seek out help from independent experts and channels, you’ll receive fewer customer service inquiries. However, companies lose a customer touchpoint and control over their brand and customer experience.
With more employees wanting flexibility with when and where they work, companies also have to consider if and how they’ll support this. By being open to freelance employees, companies could attract and retain talent.
Deploy voice-activated brand ambassadors with Replicant
Companies get the best of both worlds when leveraging voice AI. They can maintain control over the customer experience while decreasing the amount of inquiries agents have to handle. As more people use voice assistants to get help, you can ensure customers get the correct information about your products and accurate troubleshooting by creating your own Thinking Machine that can be activated through a voice assistant.
Best-of-breed solutions and/or customer service suite
Customer service organizations have been using disparate systems for years. This has created disjointed customer experiences, inconsistent data, and integration issues. Gartner recommends shifting to a suite of composable applications to create an integrated and personalized customer experience. Composable applications also enable organizations to quickly adapt and innovate.
Get the best voice AI and a composable application with Replicant
Replicant is a leader in voice AI, powering over 3,000,000 fast, natural, and contextual customer conversations each month. While you can get the best voice AI with Replicant, Replicant Voice also integrates with contact center solutions, CRMs, and other internal systems to access and update data. This ensures you’ll create a seamless customer experience across voice and other channels.
Contact centers need to successfully overcome these 10 dilemmas if they want to keep up with changes in consumer behavior, and Replicant can help you do so. By incorporating Replicant into your customer service strategy, you’ll set up your contact center to succeed well into the future. Learn more about Replicant Voice.
1 Smarter With Gartner, “Top Customer Service and Support Predictions for 2021 and Beyond,” January 29, 2021. [https://www.gartner.com/smarterwithgartner/top-customer-service-and-support-predictions-for-2021-and-beyond].
2 Gartner Press Release, “Gartner Says Customer Service and Support Leaders Plan to Focus Budget on Digital Channels and Capabilities in 2021,” February 11, 2021. [https://www.gartner.com/en/newsroom/press-releases/2021-02-11-gartner-says-customer-service-and-support-leaders-pla].
3 Smarter With Gartner, “Gartner Top 10 Strategic Predictions for 2021 and Beyond,” October 21, 2020. [https://www.gartner.com/smarterwithgartner/gartner-top-10-strategic-predictions-for-2021-and-beyond/].