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News : Woolies Primes Olive AI for Call Centre Action

#contactcenterworld

Sydney, Australia, Aug 27, 2019 -- Woolworths wants its virtual assistant dubbed 'Olive' to ease the workload of its customer contact centre by illuminating options to access information about orders or retail locations.

It's a pivot that will pit the new artificial intelligence bot against human call centre agents in a test it hopes will boost self navigation to boost satisfaction and drive down costs.

At a time of intense competition Woolies between retailing rivals, the grocery provider isn't exactly putting Olive's achievements up in lights. But it is talking behind the scenes.

iTnews first reported Woolworths was working on a large-scale conversational AI platform back in January, before revealing some of the architecture and use cases for Olive earlier this month.

Some of this was drawn from slides presented at the Google Cloud Next 19 conference in San Francisco in April.

iTnews has since obtained access to the presentation itself, providing a clearer picture on why Woolworths went down the path to create Olive, as well as the assistant’s architectural make-up.

Joshua Rogers, platform technology manager at the retailer’s digital arm WooliesX, told the conference that Olive exists in the first instance to ease pressure on what Woolworths calls its ‘Customer Hub’ - a contact centre staffed by about 400 agents.

"We started with a very simple task to make sure that we take a real customer impacting event as well as a real business impacting event and we married them together," Rogers said.

"Our customers call up our Customer Hub and they want to know specific information - information that's very readily available, but they don't have any other way to get it.

"Calling up our Customer Hub takes up time.

"There's a lot of other activities that our Customer Hub endeavours in that take up a lot more time than they probably need to."

Rogers said there are currently four ways to interact with Olive.

Customers can interact via a text-based chatbot on the Woolworths Online website, via a Google Home device, via the Hub’s IVR, or via Google Hangouts.

"Olive is able to analyse customer inquiries, align their intents with actionable workflows, and then take that data, package it up and present it back to the consumers in a consumable way," Rogers said.

"We have features like our store locator and hours of operation. We also have features to modify your lists, manage your shopping list, and answer any frequently asked questions that you might have."

The voice-based channels are enabled in part using a Google cloud-hosted service called Dialogflow, while the chat-based interface uses technology from a start-up, Inbenta.

The backend of Woolworths’ digital applications is largely microservices-based/containerised and "hosted within GKE" - Google Kubernetes Engine.

These then call on other services and sources of data to complete the customer’s request - a process facilitated with API gateway technology from Google-owned Apigee.

"We operate through Apigee to our backend services to find the data that we need to deliver the experience that we want, [and] funnel it back into applications in GKE which prepares it for delivery to the customer," Rogers said.

"The key factor there is we have backend services that have our data that the customers want to have access to, and they want to be comfortable accessing that data.

"They want to be able to interface with our business in the ways that they're most easily available to them."

Rogers demonstrated how different parts of a transaction could be completed in an integrated fashion using Olive and other Woolworths’ digital properties.

He used Google Home to talk to Olive to find location information and opening hours for his nearest Woolworths store.

He then used voice commands to add items to a "shopping list" - such as milk - before switching to Woolworths Online on his laptop to complete the order.

At a separate SAP conference in Sydney earlier this month, Olive was used to help customers arrange refunds for items that went missing or were damaged in transit.

The retailer has also previously discussed how Olive can be accessed by customers that hit the Customer Hub IVR seeking outage information about Woolworths’ digital services.

While much of the Olive experience is currently focused on Woolworths Online operations, the aim is for Olive to eventually handle information requests and customer problems from across its portfolio of retail brands.

"We want to make sure that it's not just our Woolworths Online experience that they have access to Olive but also our BWS, Big W, Dan Murphy's, our money and financial services," Rogers said.

"We also want [customers] to be comfortable and connect to us in any way that they would like - over Facebook Messenger, Alexa, and digital assistants of any kind."

#contactcenterworld

Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
Source: https://www.itnews.com.au


About Woolworths:
Company LogoWoolworths is a retail business selling food, Clothing and General merchandise to middle to upper class customers in the South african and African markets
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Today's Tip of the Day - Workforce Management Strategy

Read today's tip or listen to it on podcast.

Published: Thursday, August 29, 2019

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2021 Buyers Guide Help Desk Software

 
1.) 
eGain Corporation

eGain CallTrack™
eGain CallTrack™ is a dynamic call tracking and case management solution that helps companies provide quick, high-quality, and cost-efficient resolution of customer issues across traditional and emerging interaction channels. It is one of the many innovative customer interaction products in eGain Solve™ suite, the unified customer engagement and knowledge management software suite, which helps businesses transform their traditional call centers into omnichannel customer engagement hubs. eGain CallTrack will enable you to track, manage and resolve cases and maintain service level agreements (SLA), across channels.

2.) 
Happitu

Happitu is your customer support team’s personal coach. It guides your team through every interaction with custom workflows, responsive scripting, and dynamic help topics.

Documentation in Happitu is automated, detailed, and consistent. Go beyond handle times and service levels with the rich insights of Happitu – from granular interaction data to aggregate data and trends – you get the complete CX journey!

We intentionally built the Happitu Workflow Designer with your customer support team in mind. Using our intuitive tools that provide quick and safe iteration, you eliminate the need to involve IT or Development. Yes, you will no longer have to dread submitting a change request to Devin from IT!

Try it free for 45 days!

3.) 
Knowmax

Knowmax
Knowmax is an omnichannel knowledge management platform. Our mission is to transform contact centers into resolution centers and drive customer self service.
The platform is an industry-agnostic enterprise-grade knowledge platform with components helping in easy findability of actionable information at the right time across the desired touchpoint.

4.) 
Nuxiba Technologies

CenterWare
Nuxiba's Help Desk Software is ideal for delivering top-level contact help desk services. It not only tailors to your existing technology resources but also allows you to set staff priorities that forward clients to the most knowledgeable agents.

Give personalized assistance, and analyze performance with our real-time monitoring, recording, and reports. Integrate Salesforce or VTiger CRM systems, be TCPA compliant, protect your cardholder's data during calls, and more!

Request a quote or demo today and start the journey to increase your first-contact resolution percentages in less than three months!

5.) 
OneDesk

OneDesk's software combines Helpdesk & Project Management into one application. No need to purchase, integrate and switch between applications. Your team can support your customers and work on projects in one place. Aimed at SMBs as well as departments at large enterprises, OneDesk is frequently used by project managers, customer service, IT, professional services and more. This easy-to-use, feature-rich, and highly configurable software can manage both ticket & task workflows.

6.) 
Teckinfo Solutions Pvt. Ltd.

ActivDesk Help Desk Software
ActivDesk Help Desk Software is an intelligent ticketing software for multi- channel customer interaction & engagement. It streamlines the entire ticket management process. With its SLA & escalation management, it enables your help desk to deliver enriching customer experience.
 

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