Five Ways to Increase the Original Customer Service AI: Agent Intelligence

Like so many business sectors, the customer service industry is abuzz with talk of Artificial Intelligence, or AI.

Even as we implement this kind of AI through tools like natural language chatbots and voice assistants, we must not overlook another AI. Unlike its machine-learning counterparts, this AI excels in reasoning, problem-solving, and empathizing with customers. AND you likely already have this invaluable resource in place, ready to significantly enhance customer satisfaction. I’m referring to Agent Intelligence.

Artificial Intelligence is a transformative technology, to be sure. But let’s not lose sight of the fact that artificial intelligence is, at its core, an extension of the innate abilities humans have honed for millennia. The original AI – Agent Intelligence – is your most significant intelligence asset today, and it’s probably one that you’re not leveraging to its full potential.

Surveys indicate that 88% of people seeking support prefer to connect with an agent immediately. This preference isn’t driven by a desire for conversation (Well, not usually. There are always a few lonely souls!). Most people believe that speaking with an agent is the quickest path to resolving their issues.

However, not every interaction with an agent ends up being a quick path to resolution. Customers may need to repeat information already given or explain situations that should be documented in their customer records. Agents may understand the customer’s need but not have a way to address the issue directly. Any time agents have to collect information that should already be at their fingertips or redirect calls they can’t resolve, it riles customers and their impressions of your brand fall. It’s amazing how far perceptions can fall during a single call — and how long they can stay that way.

So, where does the breakdown occur? Often, it’s because agents lack access to relevant information and process automation tools. Without them, you’re limiting your most valuable intelligence asset.

Here are five ways to boost your Agents’ Intelligence:

Hold the Muzak and Start Servicing: Treat “hold time” not as wasted time but as an opportunity to gather relevant data. This approach equips agents with the information they need right from the start, allowing them to assist customers more efficiently. For customers eager for quick resolutions, this blend of semi-self-service support is far superior to unproductive wait time.

Free the Data So Agents Are Informed: Limiting agents’ access to customer data is a mistake. Although integrating data sources can be challenging, it’s a crucial step for any successful strategy. The more informed your agents are, the quicker and more accurately they can address customer needs. Prioritize making relevant data accessible to your agents.

Deploy Screen Sharing or Co-Browsing: Enhancing agent intelligence with visual aids like co-browsing and screen sharing can be a game-changer. Such technologies enable agents to guide customers more effectively, facilitating quicker resolutions.

Let Them Serve Themselves: Not all customer inquiries require complex problem-solving. For simpler tasks, direct customers to self-service tools. This strategy frees agents to focus on issues that necessitate their expertise while customers appreciate the efficiency and autonomy of self-service options.

Give The People What They Want: Empower your agents to resolve customer needs with greater autonomy. Removing unnecessary barriers and allowing agents more flexibility can dramatically improve their ability to quickly and effectively meet customer expectations.

Agent Intelligence holds vast untapped potential. By fully supporting agents with the right data and tools, we can streamline operations and forge stronger connections with our customers. As we look to the future of customer service, let’s remember that the most advanced technologies are those that enhance, not replace, the human touch. Investing in Agent Intelligence is a step toward a more empathetic, efficient, and effective future.

Now that’s some powerful AI.

About the Author

Dr. Ori Faran is CEO of Callvu.