As business leaders are contemplating the promise of artificial intelligence (AI) and automation on digital transformation, many are quickly realizing that a customer’s experience is the sum of each moment: good and bad, direct and indirect, automated and manual, digital and face-to-face.
Given the significant impact that notably back-office automation has made on productivity over the last five years, it’s natural for you to gather your management and broadly find AI and robotic process automation (RPA) applicability across operations, finance, sales, service, bricks-and-mortar and beyond. But will the RPA of old, that supports back-office processes well today, stand up to serve a customer-facing employee dealing with the angry mom, the stranded traveler or the confused claimant?
A word of caution: your front is different than your back. Let’s take a restaurant as an example. The front of the restaurant is about making someone feel welcome, delivering the finished product, selling in the moment and offering a patron a clean and fun environment. If you’ve ever walked around to the back of a restaurant, you’d see the reality of all the food going in and the garbage going out.
But doesn’t the real magic happen in the kitchen? The chef would say yes; the host would say no. Both the “front of the house” and “back of the house” of a restaurant are important, but each has a different set of challenges to deliver an amazing experience.
The same is true today for customer-facing automation used to drive digital self-service and serve employees in the contact centre. These tools enable agents to find answers, solve problems and complete sales quickly, accurately and to the customers’ satisfaction. But the back office handles the processing of customers’ issues, like inquiry forms, service and sales orders and documentation, like loan and mortgage applications that takes longer and are more involved to handle.
Typically integrating a few systems to solve a workflow or automating a task in the back-office won’t make your agents happier or more productive, just like a new oven or dishwasher will not help the waitstaff. The same is true for poorly designed virtual assistants (VAs), (euphemistically referred to as chatbots), which the equivalent in restaurants may be the table or mobile point of sale terminals. These VAs often plague customer journeys with dead-ends and certainly NOT a path to front-office employees. Now isn’t the time to open the back-office RPA toolkit and automate like before.
There are two main reasons why your front is different than your back. Firstly, at Jacada we often see a dozen or more systems for integration while engaging in a back-office project. But if you have 10, 20, 30, even 40 running applications on a contact centre agent desktop, you’re not alone. There is plenty of digital debt on the desktop of your average agent, and most applications can’t be or aren’t ready for replacement. The same is true for VAs: dozens of systems are often required to make a great experience. But the time for attended RPA to step in and collaborate is now! Yes now, and not after we migrate to “insert new CRM vendor here” or “rip out that old tool Larry made last year.” Digital debt will live on in some cases and because the front is different than the back, look to use well-designed contact center automation to drive quick wins and increase agent engagement.
Second, back-office systems rarely speak, truly speak. Customers and agents speak all day long. Creating automation with conversational flow, grounded on natural language processing (NLP), is often more than what traditional RPA can handle. Instead, delight customers by creating good conversations in digital self-service that will transition to an agent seamlessly. Often these systems cannot provide the emotion needed for the front-office, like empathy. In addition, customers interacting with the VAs expect faster transaction handling, satisfaction via one step resolution and most importantly, a pleasant customer service experience.
The human body will not work unless the front and back function as one. The same with business operations, whether restaurants or contact centres. They must be seamlessly connected to provide an excellent customer experience. Do so and your customers and your staff will thank you.
Regardless of your digital debt, keep your customer dialogues conversational, guide your agents and create seamless self-service journeys. Savvy contact centres are reaping the benefits of AI and automation tools designed specifically for them to transform complex desktop environments into intelligent solutions for their employees. Remember that traditional back-office RPA is powerful; however, attended RPA in the front-office should provide design-once, end-to-end and low-code for both agent-assisted interactions and self-service.
So, the next time you visit your favourite restaurant, think of all the automation that makes the entire restaurant run smoothly. And just like a restaurant, you will have systems and processes that span the front and back of your organization. Always keep your customer and agent-facing experiences a high priority. These experiences are the faces and “front doors of your brand”. Protect them. Serve them up well. Deliver them on a silver platter if you need to. Because in many cases, it’s our people who save us when the fish is bad, the wine is too warm, or the table is wobbly. Remember to tip your waiter and always remember that your front is different than your back.
Matthew Storm is Vice President, Marketing, Jacada (www.jacada.com).
Publish Date: June 6, 2019 5:00 AM
|1.)||All Ears Ltd|
Freemate headsets, and sanitary solutions for headsets
Freemate headsets available, corded and wireless for telephony and USB. 3 year warranty compatible with all model phones. We supply accessories from downleads, USB leads, ear cushions, leatherettes and we service call centre headsets, these are sanitised and repaired or serviced as required.
We supply the corporate environment, Government departments, security, medical and professional offices and meet the needs of many of New Zealand's SOHO market.
We can even develop and create one-off solutions for those with mobility or disability limitations opening up a world of freedom in communications. And we like to have fun on the journey.
Smith Corona Headsets
3 year warranty compatible with all model phones. Accessories also available. Cords, earpads, etc all factory direct pricing
Since 1998 Headsets123 has been supplying Call Center Grade corded phone headsets, wireless headsets, headset telephones and a wide range of headset accessories to accommodate Medical, Insurance, Financial offices and large Call Centers environments offering you value, comfort, flexibility and increased productivity in your day to day business.
Our offices are located just outside of Seattle, WA. We hope you enjoy our wide range of headsets and accessories.
Jabra is a leader in engineering communications and sound solutions – innovating to empower both consumers and businesses. We are committed to letting people hear more, do more, and be more than they ever thought possible. Through sound and video, we help transform lives. Jabra engineering excellence leads the way, building on 150 years of pioneering work. This allows us to create integrated headsets and communications tools that help professionals work more productively; wireless headphones and earbuds that let consumers better enjoy calls, music, and media; and pioneering video conferencing solutions, enabling seamless collaboration between distributed teams. Jabra employs approx. 1,400 people worldwide
Based in Dorset, England, JPL designs and manufactures innovative professional telecom headsets. We have a wide range of professional telecom and call centre use headsets in wired, wireless DECT and Bluetooth styles.
Making sure that your customer’s voice can be heard is vital. JPL Telecom ensures that your customer’s experience is first-class. All headsets have our Surround Shield™ noise cancellation to make certain your customer only hears what you want them to hear. Comfortable and attractively designed headsets are built to withstand the constant use in any call centre environment.
Our aim is to continuously improve customer choice, offering a fair price and value to our resellers and end users.
|7.)||Unicom Services Ltd.|
Contact center headsets and conference solutions
Unicom Services Ltd. is a distributor of professional headsets and communication solutions for all possible applications.
Products and Services:
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|8.)||Xiamen Mairdi Electronic Technology Co., Ltd|
Call Center Headsets
Mairdi is a professional call center headsets maker in China. We've designed, produced and exported professional communication headsets for 16 years. Our headsets were exported to over 120 countires in the world.
Our headsets are widely compatible with nearly all IP Phones, desk phones, PC and mobiles. They are all noise cancelling and with built-in hearing protection technology. Our headset accessories are Plantronics or Jabra compatible. All the headsets and accessories are CE,FCC, RoHS certificated.
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