Service expectations are evolving faster than most contact centers can keep up. Customers want personalized and proactive engagement, easy self-service capabilities, and seamless connection across every touchpoint, interaction type, and device. At the same time, agents yearn for greater autonomy and access to unified customer data to better meet these evolving service needs - wherever they happen to be working. You know you need to integrate more intelligent, AI-based solutions into your contact center to level-up your brand. Now, you have to make an informed decision. What solution is best for your organization?
Two solutions are getting a lot of attention in the market: Amazon Web Services Contact Center Intelligence (AWS CCI) and Google Contact Center Artificial Intelligence (Google CCAI). Here's what you should know.
Greater employee and customer satisfaction, reduced costs with Amazon Transcribe and Comprehend: In AWS CCI is Amazon Comprehend. This solution analyzes call interactions in real-time to provide agents with contextual suggestions for resolving customer issues. Using Amazon Transcribe and natural language processing (NLP), the technology detects the caller's sentiment, identifies keywords and phrases, and then passes that data to Amazon Kendra, which provides relevant suggestions to the agent. In a scenario in which an agent deals with a customer who has increasing frustration, this intelligence prompts the agent with helpful responses to diffuse the situation and maintain satisfaction.
Increased customer satisfaction with Amazon Lex, Polly, and Kendra: With the combination of these three technologies, customers can enjoy seamless self-service powered by a dynamic FAQ bot. Kendra provides the best answer suited to the specific inquiry and continually improves as queries come in. Customers get their results fast and efficiently while agents are free to handle more urgent or pressing issues.
Better quality management with Amazon Transcribe and Comprehend: A powerful combination of these technologies provides deep quality management insights that enable managers to analyze customer-agent interactions, identify areas for improvement, and make examples of high-performing agents. Managers can create a feedback loop that relays data back to agents to help them change their practices based on the new information. Behind the scenes, automatic speech recognition (ASR) generates transcripts that NLP analyzes to provide managers with better snapshots of customer interactions.
Relationship-driven experiences with Dialogflow CX: Dialogflow CX allows contact centers to build virtual agents that provide personalized support, immediate service, and rapid resolution. These 24x7 virtual agents can seamlessly switch conversation topics, handle nuanced questions, save on operational costs, and free up live agents to handle more complex, time-consuming, and stimulating interactions. These virtual agents also continually improve through machine learning, meaning what was once a transactional experience becomes a relationship-based journey with your brand.
Improved agent performance with Agent Assist: With virtual agents on deck to handle high volumes of customer interactions, human agents are free to take on more challenging service issues. Agent Assist empowers service representatives with continuous support during calls and chats, including real-time information on the customer's intent and step-by-step guidance to help them resolve tricky problems. With a real-time digital assistant, agents receive recommended, personalized responses that support them to meet higher customer experience standards.
Both AWS CCI and Google CCAI rely on NLP. NLP identifies customer call drivers and sentiment to help managers better analyze interactions, improving call outcomes and overall efficiency. This AI-powered solution delivers tangible results for contact centers by improving call deflection rates, spurring shorter call handling times, and reducing agent training costs. Contact centers will realize higher CSAT scores, and managers can make a prized example of high-performing customer interactions to demonstrate to agents what goes into a most successful call.
Servion is an end-to-end, holistic technology partner connecting enterprises with AWS CCI and Google CCAI. We have worked with hundreds of businesses (now more than ever with the disruption of COVID-19) on what elements of intelligent contact center technology best suit their organization's specific needs, handling everything from solution design to deployment to ongoing management.
No matter where your contact center currently stands, we can develop a personalized blueprint for your organization to enable a more intelligent, responsive, AI-powered contact center that creates better customer and agent experiences. Connect with our contact center specialists to learn more about enabling your contact center with AI from AWS or Google.
Publish Date: January 17, 2022 12:00 PM
The proliferation of cloud software, changing customer behaviors and expectations, and the pressures of the global health crisis are driving explosive growth in cloud contact center services. But moving your on-premises contact center to the cloud is one of the most significant technology shifts your business will face. In an industry flooded with options, how can you choose the right solution to meet your organization’s specific needs?
There are several categories of business requirements that will influence your choice. When meeting with vendors, come prepared with answers to the following questions:
What kind of compliance measures must you meet?
Consider general compliance requirements that most states in the U.S. have, such as getting consent from both parties (customer and agent) to record communications. While call recording laws vary by state, your cloud contact center solution should make it easy to abide by any. Other compliance laws include the payment card industry data security standard (PCI-DSS) and the Healthcare Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), both which require the safeguarding of customer data. The right cloud contact center solution must adhere to a range of data security requirements, which you can learn more about with this checklist we created.
Do you have a “sweet spot” for number of seats?
A cloud-based contact center will provide ideal experiences depending on the number of users on the platform. Some vendors are most focused and comfortable in the 50-100 seats range, while others target larger seat counts up to thousands of agents. These ranges are important to consider as they relate to the size of your organization, your projected growth, and if you have any seasonal fluctuation in use. If you have seasonal highs and lows in call volume, you’ll want a solution that can adjust to those seat-scaling requirements at a reasonable price point (which is where the benefits of a flexible consumption-based pricing model come into play). Even outside of seasonal spikes, you’ll want to ensure you can flexibly scale and shrink as needed (consider the effects of the pandemic, where customer service teams of all types were inundated by calls for months on end).
Do you have a robust IT team?
Consider the size and proficiency of your technology team. If you don’t have sizable IT help, you’ll want a cloud contact center solution that prioritizes ease-of-installation and maintenance. Or, you might want to consider the benefits of a managed contact center solution. A Managed Service Provider (MSP) handles everything from routine user management and changes to platform monitoring and upkeep to application and business rules management, typically at a lower and more predictable cost while helping your IT team refocus on core business-related activities for your organization.
Do you need omnichannel capabilities?
In short: YES. Your customers shouldn’t have to resort to a phone call because your organization doesn’t offer seamless digital engagement. You have to make it easy for customers to contact your organization across all communication channels (voice, chat, email, SMS, social media, self-service) and devices (mobile phone, tablet, desktop) without confusion or complexity. Your cloud contact center solution should be designed to enhance customer loyalty by creating easy, fully integrated interactions across every channel and device.
What kind of app integrations would suit you?
Your cloud contact center solution must seamlessly integrate with your current CRM, ERP, and other systems. Integrating with your CRM, for instance, will help your employees better serve customers by providing an “at a glance” view of a contact when an incoming call is initiated, seamlessly log voice and digital interactions, automatically add notes and update customer history into the CRM, and more.
You’ll also want to consider the value of integrating communication application programming interfaces (APIs) via Communication Platform-as-a-Service (CPaaS). CPaaS is a cloud contact center amplifier, enabling you to easily develop custom apps that take customer experience to exciting new levels. Some of today’s leading cloud contact center vendors also offer seamless CPaaS solutions. If you’re not ready for CPaaS right now, chances are you’ll want to be in the future (by 2023, Gartner predicts that 90% of global enterprises will leverage API-enabled CPaaS offerings to enhance their digital competitiveness - up from 20% in 2020).
Not sure where to start with vendors? Servion is an end-to-end, consultative technology specialist with certification across a wide range of cloud contact center platforms or applications including Cisco, Amazon Connect, Genesys, Five9, Twilio, NICE InContact, Verint and more. Our extensive expertise in integrating leading platforms and applications with any cloud delivery model (public, private, hybrid, on-premise), 20+ years of application development practice, global delivery and support capabilities, and compliance expertise (PCI-DSS and HIPAA) enable us to offer a personalized, vendor-agnostic approach to adopting the perfect cloud contact center solution for your organization. See for yourself with a free consulting session with our contact center experts.
Publish Date: January 10, 2022 1:33 AM
Evolving customer behaviors and expectations, combined with the first-time impacts of a global pandemic, forced organizations to accelerate a shift to cloud for better agility, capacity management, security, disaster recovery, customer experience, and data consolidation. But what makes for cloud success? Businesses are wowed by new cloud technologies and quickly deploy them to solve specific issues, yet many end up with more costs and cloud complexity.
Cloud success is less about tools and more about strategy (and more specifically, a partner who ensures your cloud strategy is designed to drive business value). The right provider will act as a partner who works closely with you to support you on the core aspects of your cloud journey. These can include customer journey design (automation, self-service), the agent/employee experience (analytics, workforce engagement), operational intelligence (proactive engagement), contact center optimization (digital customer service), and productivity and cost. All of these things must work effortlessly together for customer service and operational excellence.
Servion’s breadth of technology solutions, capabilities, and expertise uniquely positions us to be able to handle any customer’s specific cloud needs. We help develop the right approach by ensuring clarity on the desired business outcome or end result, and we utilize our industry-leading talent to address customers’ core business issues along the way.
Move to the cloud with confidence. Continue the conversation with Servion’s team of cloud experts.
Publish Date: December 20, 2021 2:20 AM
Servion, a leading contact center and CX solutions provider announced a new partnership with Genesys to help deliver world-class scalable cloud center and omnichannel customer experiences. Servion will leverage the power of the Genesys technology ecosystem, combined with our custom-built solutions to help clients deliver seamless and personalized customer experiences across channels.
Servion, a certified Genesys partner, is one of the few solution providers that can sell, deploy, integrate, customize, support, and deliver best-in-class customer experiences globally on the Genesys contact center platform. The company seamlessly integrates the Genesys contact center platforms with CRMs, customer portals, and more to provide agents with a single pane of glass access to data and functions. Servion also makes its contact center support expertise available through its 24x7 managed services.
Ken Archer, Senior Vice President of Worldwide Channels at Genesys said, “Servion has a long history as specialists in designing, implementing, and delivering innovative digital experiences for some of the world's most customer-centric brands. We are pleased to onboard Servion to the Genesys partner ecosystem and we look forward to working together to offer organisations best-in-class customer experiences by leveraging Genesys Cloud CX, AI and digital solutions.”
"Servion is pleased to enter into this partnership with Genesys and bring the industry-leading cloud communications and omnichannel solutions from Genesys to our clients. This partnership with Genesys further reinforces Servion's commitment to delivering innovative and personalized experiences, building lifetime customers, and increasing customer value," said Laurent Philonenko, CEO at Servion.
About Servion Global Solutions
For more than 25 years, customer-centric brands have trusted Servion to design, build, run, and optimize Contact Centers and Customer Experience (CX) solutions. Servion delivers complete solutions for businesses to innovate in providing digital experiences using the best available technologies while maximizing their existing investments. Our 800 CX professionals apply their passion and deep domain expertise to the entire design-build-run-optimize solution lifecycle. Servion has helped 600 enterprises across the globe deliver great experiences to their customers, partners, and employees. For more information, visit https://servion.com.
Publish Date: December 16, 2021 11:12 AM
Changing market trends and the disruption of a global health crisis have placed unprecedented pressure on customer service operations. As a result, we are seeing more organizations standing up a Customer Experience (CX) Center of Excellence (COE) to drive long-term value and deliver service experiences that surpass that of their competitors.
A COE is a centralized (sometimes virtual) unit of dedicated people within an organization that acts as a reliable, go-to source of information for everyone within the company for improving all things CX. Whether an employee is in Marketing, Operations, or Product Development, in San Francisco, London, or France, they will know where to go to find new CX process protocols, metrics, and important customer data.
Signs of a Great CX Center of Excellence
Publish Date: December 2, 2021 12:23 AM
The concept of omnichannel customer experience – in which companies aim to provide a set of seamlessly integrated channels that cater to customers’ preferences and deliver the most efficient resolution – has been around for over a decade, yet many brands fail to deliver an effective omnichannel experience for their customers. Now in the wake of a global pandemic, excelling with omnichannel is non-negotiable. A 2020 McKinsey report shows that more than half of customers engage with three to five channels during each journey they take toward making a purchase or resolving a request. In hospitality, the average customer looking to book a reservation online switches nearly six times between web and mobile channels.
Economies may be reopening, but many customers have grown accustomed to the ease and convenience of digital service channels having no choice but to adopt them during the pandemic. Omnichannel will continue to permeate organizations as customers weigh their options moving forward. Some will continue the habits they picked up during COVID, using multiple different channels for brand engagement, while others with underlying conditions will have no choice out of an abundance of caution.
To connect with customers and win loyalty, businesses should reevaluate and enhance their omnichannel approach. Here are two things to keep in mind:
Understand your customers’ propensity to use multiple channels. Companies need to use data to understand which customers are most likely to engage in cross-channel service journeys – now more than ever given the changes brought about by COVID-19 – and what those journeys look like. Research shows, for example, that 47% of U.S. Gen Z customers research items on their mobile devices while shopping at brick-and-mortar locations. Older generations accustomed to simply picking up the phone have had no choice but to adapt to new digital service models, including several new steps in the customer experience. Grocery shopping is a perfect example: by the summer of 2020, 68% of customers were ordering groceries online for home delivery with many of these people being part of older, more vulnerable populations. Today, customers can choose from tens of channels for connecting to a services or sales organization, hence meeting the customer where they are is crucial. It’s not just voice, chat or email anymore; it is mobile messaging too, and this proliferation has no end in sight. Research shows that there are 1.3 billion FB Messenger users globally, and more than 20 billion messages are exchanged between businesses and users monthly on the platform. The capability to keep adding channels for your customers will remain front and center.
Identify the two or three most important cross-channel customer journeys for your business, then build from there. According to McKinsey, an omnichannel approach that focuses on top interaction models – versus offering the widest range of interaction options – can accelerate resolution times, create those “moments of delight” that keep customers coming back, and increase employees’ satisfaction and success rates. Some of the top cross-channel customer journeys today include online chat (live or AI) to phone, mobile app to phone, and SMS (text) to web. Another big trend we’re seeing is the de-escalation of a phone call to a mobile or digital alternative for self-service, otherwise known as digital redirection. In this way, companies can detect when a customer is calling from their mobile device and offer them the option to instead be redirected to a mobile or digital self-service experience versus waiting for a live agent. The self-service experience can be escalated back to a live agent at any time, with the agent receiving context on the self-service experience along with all other important customer data.
Customer journeys are nonlinear and unpredictable, now more than ever with the impacts of COVID-19. As an end-to-end technology specialist, Servion can help you focus on what matters most for providing an efficient omnichannel experience: consistent, uninterrupted, and seamless across the channels of your choice. Learn more here.
Publish Date: November 30, 2021 4:25 AM
The public sector looks completely different in the wake of a global pandemic:
As we forge ahead, governments need a cloud contact center platform (Contact Center-as-a-Service – CCaaS) to improve citizen-facing services, workforce productivity and lay a better foundation for growth and innovation. CCaaS solutions use a subscription-based licensing model to provide cloud-based contact center software. The capabilities of CCaaS often surpass those of on-premises solutions because they are built with a high degree of flexibility and integration interfaces.
Here’s how the public sector benefits:
Elevated CX with personalized, digital service: All customer interactions start or move between digital channels like chat, SMS, social media, and in-app messaging. CCaaS allows customers to choose the option they feel most comfortable with, enabling organizations to quickly meet the needs of every customer while accommodating more inquires faster. This became vital during the pandemic as interaction volumes – especially for things like unemployment claims – hit the roof. Replacing your decades-old legacy contact center with a cloud-based system allows for newer, more dynamic customer experiences.
Intelligent, automated self-service: CCaaS allows for self-service applications like knowledge bases and chat and voice bots that measurably improve customer effort, average handle time, and customer satisfaction. CCaaS also enables organizations to redirect or deflect customers calling from a mobile device to a digital self-service experience. For example, a public health department could redirect mobile callers calling about the COVID-19 vaccine to a related FAQ on their website. Doing so can help save valuable costs and time. According to No Jitter, LA County achieved 60% cost savings using Amazon’s CCaaS solution, Amazon Connect, by reducing hold times and automating interactions.
Automated notifications: Enable cloud-based notifications to automatically reach out to citizens with alerts. Many CCaaS solutions include optional response tracking, location requests, text interaction, and auto-forms. For example, a DMV could use this to create a virtual waiting system for residents needing to take care of things like driver’s licenses or passport renewals. Governments can also send proactive notifications to reach out to large groups of citizens to update them on changes in policies, procedures, hours of operation, and more.
Next-level agility: On-premises contact center solutions have been relied on for decades and are not inferior. The demands of the digital era, however, have made them less viable as we move forward. Scalability and flexibility are essential to businesses – now more than ever after the effects of the pandemic – and CCaaS supports these concerns. Companies can easily scale to accommodate increased demand, move faster to adapt and improve, and much more.
Data consolidation and management: Accenture reported last year that 84% of citizens are willing to share personal information with government agencies if it would enhance customer service. The unified nature of CCaaS enables organizations to create an effective, enterprise-wide data management strategy that leverages the kind of intelligence needed to deliver outstanding citizen experiences. This is especially important in the public sector, which has notoriously lagged in this area.
Better employee/agent experience – from anywhere: CCaaS solutions provided by vendors like Google and Amazon offer tools that empower employees/agents to work more productively with better context, responsiveness, and satisfaction. For example, Agent Assist for Chat (part of Google’s CCAI offering) has been proven to help agents manage up to 28% more conversations concurrently and respond to chats up to 15% faster. These solutions can be used wherever agents happen to be working, using any device.
As an end-to-end technology specialist who has worked with some of the world’s largest government agencies, Servion can help you take advantage of the speed, flexibility (seamless scalability), and cost-efficiency (no CAPEX investment) of CCaaS.
Provide your customers/citizens the absolute best. Schedule a meeting with our CX specialists to discuss your organization’s CCaaS needs further.
Publish Date: November 23, 2021 1:45 AM
Adoption of contact center AI technologies like conversational AI, process automation, automatic call routing, and intelligent workforce engagement has grown dramatically in recent years and reached new heights during the COVID-19 pandemic. Though most companies report benefits from these AI deployments, research suggests a standstill when it comes to continuously optimizing AI and scaling its value to innovate and improve customer service. The reason? Lack of in-house expertise:
Implementing just a chatbot is no longer enough. Companies need to scale the benefits they’re seeing with AI in the contact center to identify new CX opportunities while continuously optimizing and evolving their AI applications. To do this, organizations should look at managed services for AI.
A managed service provider (MSP) comes alongside you, understands what issues your organization is facing, and then works to architect AI solutions that can be managed entirely by them or jointly by them and you. This includes initial planning (creating a roadmap that prioritizes AI initiatives linked to business value), designing (consulting needs and requirements), building your AI solution(s), and running and optimizing them for continuous improvement.
Figure out what your business really needs
An MSP not only helps with development, deployment, and management of AI solutions, but will help consult you on your organization’s specific AI needs and requirements. This includes infrastructure (cloud, on-premise), applications, digital channel overlay, self-service, robotic process automation (RPA), integrations, reporting and analytics, and more. They’ll help you assess the current state of your organization by reviewing all existing IT infrastructure and applications, looking at both current and targeted performance metrics, and designing transition timelines in a way that saves compared to current costs.
Stop training and start gaining
Your organization will no longer need to worry about what type of talent is needed, where that talent will come from, and (perhaps most stressful of all) training efforts. You can start benefiting from the scale and intelligence of AI without having to spend months training developers and AI staff. These employees can be better utilized, and you can spend more time providing training to customer-facing employees on how to use AI in their jobs to immediately improve CX. An MSP will also take care of service integration and management across your various AI partnerships – being a one-stop shop for all contractual relationships – while offering even more value with their ecosystem of leading tech vendors. You’ll benefit from a single point of contact across all of your AI systems and applications.
Continuously optimize and evolve
An MSP will provide the continuous attention your AI applications need. While you’re busy focusing on other high priority initiatives, your service provider will be constantly watching and analyzing your AI data as new intents emerge, new products are launched, and customers say different things. With Servion, for example, you’ll get ongoing reports and analytics, benchmarking, virtual assistant tuning and expansion, process optimization, agile application maintenance, call center routing and self-service updates, user management, availability/SLA management, and more – everything you need to create new operational efficiencies in a continuous improvement model.
Here’s how organizations are using Servion Managed Services for AI:
Create new operational efficiencies, revitalize the role of your customer service/contact center, and address complex challenges that impact CX. Servion provides 24x7 support using a combination of global resources and dedicated on-site engineers. We have four network operations centers (NOCs) located worldwide, and our team currently manages 100 customers, 32,000 agents and 200,000 endpoints and ports.
Click here to schedule a meeting with one of our specialists to learn more about Servion Managed Services.
Publish Date: November 15, 2021 7:17 AM
The contact center has changed, and so too has its requirements. Tools and technologies need to be faster, smarter, and more flexible to meet current and future customer, agent, supervisor, and organizational needs. Translation: contact centers need to be AI-enabled. Eighty percent of CX leaders polled this year by Talkdesk say they believe AI will provide a better contact center experience.
Here are some valuable AI use cases for the next-gen contact center:
Reduced Call Volumes
Forty percent of contact center managers surveyed by IDC this year said their facility experienced higher than usual call volumes – far more than their trained employees could handle. AI is poised to transform the contact center by reducing call volumes without compromising quality of service or operational efficiency.
Consider Conversational AI, which allows various AI and automation technologies to interact with people in a humanlike way. Instead of browsing, searching, and navigating for the information they need, customers can ask questions directly, get answers, and take action using a conversational interface such as an intelligent IVR or a voice or chat bot. Contact centers can seamlessly deflect or redirect customers to a digital self-service experience for handling basic requests like paying bills, password resets, and managing their accounts so they can maximize their most expensive resource: agents.
Better CX Measurement
Improving customer experience measurement is at the top of every contact center manager’s list of goals. To do this, they turn to a number of CX metrics like Customer Satisfaction (CSAT), Average Handle Time, Customer Effort, and Net Promoter Score (NPS).
Consider intelligent routing (also referred to as attribute-based routing and smart routing). Contact centers can automatically route an incoming caller to the best-matched resource within the facility or throughout the entire organization to create better service experiences and brand affinity. Also consider Conversational AI, which includes several different technologies such as sentiment analysis, intent recognition, and speech analytics. These technologies bring intelligence and scale to a variety of touchpoints and channels, enabling organizations to not only streamline service but understand what customers really want in conversation in real-time to better measure CX. Also consider speech biometrics, which improves agent efficiency and average handle time while delivering more personalized, outcome-based service.
Greater Agent Productivity
Customer service teams are facing extreme changes and challenges, especially given the COVID-19 pandemic. They are expected to seamlessly handle increasingly complex and emotionally charged interactions, many while working from home as organizations embrace blended and remote work models. AI is an invaluable investment in this area.
Applications of intelligent self-service like digital deflection and voice and chat bots allow customers to update information, submit requests, check on order statuses, and more – even as interaction volumes spike, without needing to add additional agents. At the same time, you’ll be freeing up live agents to more confidently handle complex interactions, take care of post-call work, etc. By 2023, Juniper Research estimates that businesses will save over 2.5 billion customer service hours as a result of implementing applications of AI like chatbots.
Solutions on the Market
There are plenty of solutions available that will supercharge your contact center with AI. For example, Google Contact Center AI comes with a Virtual Agent platform that allows you to create voice and chat bots that automate interactions via voice or text and hand off the conversation to a live agent when the bot is unable to help a customer. The solution also comes with Insights, a module that uses Natural Language Processing (NLP) to identify call drivers and sentiment so you can better measure CX. There’s also Amazon Web Services Contact Center Intelligence (AWS CCI), which comes with its own set of features to improve quality management, customer satisfaction, and agent productivity.
Servion exists to help organizations determine which AI solution is best for their contact center. We’ll help you figure out what your business really needs, even managing everything for you so you can stop training, start gaining, and continuously optimize and evolve your AI investments within the contact center.
Publish Date: November 10, 2021 2:44 AM