Gaurav Singh is the founder and CEO of Verloop.io, the world’s leading Conversational AI for Customer Support
Covid-19 continues to impede business operations across the globe. Businesses are continuously adapting in anticipation of the new normal. Many organizations tackled the health crisis by offering high-quality products and services with utmost care for customers and employees. Changing customer behavior compelled them to accelerate these measures. A survey by McKinsey found consumers from 45 countries indicated a preference toward buying essentials, shaken loyalty and an increase in adoption of online ordering. In response to these changes, customer support has shifted to the top of the priority list for many businesses of all scales.
Customer retention is crucial for businesses to survive, and addressing the evolving needs of customers is imperative. Handling customer support operations during these unprecedented times has been challenging as remote working became inevitable. Leaders should consider reimagining processes to build resilience and cautiously navigate through the crisis. As the founder of a customer support automation platform, I’ve seen how investing in customer support automation can help businesses serve customers consistently while relieving your support team from excessive workloads.
Benefits Of Customer Support Automation
The roadmap for business survival in the post-Covid-19 days must be designed on the parameters of care, safety and trust. You can leverage technology to redesign your process and use data to offer better customer experiences. Here are six ways customer support automation can help your organization in the times to come:
1. Uninterrupted availability: Customers often demand immediate and personalized resolution of their queries. Automating customer service processes can ensure 24/7 assistance to customers without burdening your team. Self-service tools can help reduce customer wait time and subsequent frustration.
2. Conveniently manage support queries: Many sectors faced an increase in customer service calls related to the pandemic. Automation of repetitive tasks can save time while allowing your agents to handle other complicated issues. AI-driven chatbots can humanize chats while handling multiple queries simultaneously.
3. Meet the changing customer expectation: Customer service in the pandemic is driven by the emotions of care, safety and trust. Some businesses with a reduced workforce are finding it difficult to address wavering consumer expectations. Automation of customer care can strengthen your support system as basic queries are answered by virtual assistants.
4. Support your workforce and improve workflow: Automation helps relieve your customer service agents of repetitive tasks so they can handle customer queries. Specialized tools can ease the assistance process and speed it up as your teams operate remotely.
5. Get real-time analytics: Manual noting of customer complaints, raising tickets and allocation of tickets to staff can be time consuming and can lead to customer disappointment. Automation of routine and complaint assignment processes can help agents serve better as previous communication through all channels is consolidated to offer in-depth insight into the issue.
6. Manage costs: When many teams are working remotely and are overburdened, investing in recruits and training may not be cost-efficient for you. Investing in customer support automation can help improve the productivity of your existing team. Conversational and voice-enabled AI tools offer the much-needed personalized touch at a much lower cost compared to a human.
Considerations For Implementing Customer Support Automation
It’s important to carefully assess your needs when considering automation. Look for a solution with scalability. Automation can help streamline processes and eventually enable growth, but as companies grow, the value of that automation is only as good as their ability to expand in larger volume and in other parts of the business. Search for a solution with a robust set of integrations to adjust as your company grows. Additionally, consider your resources; tearing out old systems and replacing them takes a lot of time, requires a significant upfront cost and ROI isn’t always immediately realized.
Automating customer support isn’t without its hindrances. While data-driven queries can be easily handled by chats, there’s always a need for human representatives to handle queries that require higher-order thinking skills such as empathy. Also, with every technology, there’s a learning curve. With breakthroughs happening at a rapid pace, the learning curve can get overwhelming for organizations. Thus businesses need to be careful when they choose their customer support automation tool and make sure they find the best solution for their employees.
Customer support automation needs to work for your team before it works for your customers. Allow each member of your team to learn about the new process and arrange sessions to solve their queries. A well-equipped team will be able to make the best of your automation efforts. Implementation of your automation tools must be accompanied by testing. Though conversational AI is proficient in handling multiple customer queries and can deliver hyper-personalized experiences, what works brilliantly in one scenario may not work well in another. Customer support automation tools are powered by machine learning (ML) and improve based on their observations. They work on data analytics to deliver human-like communication but still can’t overmaster the performance of your human representatives in complex scenarios. Collecting customer feedback and analyzing it can help you find pain points that need to be addressed.
When it comes to selecting the right customer support automation tools for your organization, you may find the process overwhelming as many have similar features. The best customer support tools must enable your teams to perform better through collaboration, organization and data sharing. Look for tools that offer omnichannel support and self-service abilities. Beyond the functionality, tools that integrate easily with your existing infrastructure and are scalable are more likely to be the right fit for your business.
Why Automation Is Here To Stay
Many leaders across all major sectors are acknowledging the pivotal role of customer support automation in helping them weather the crisis. In response to a survey, 73% of respondents said customer relationships had improved as a result of automation, and 76% said that automation was also beneficial for their workforce.
Industry leaders anticipate the growth of innovative automated solutions as streamlined customer services are becoming crucial for businesses. Automated customer support can help organizations save costs and time along with helping them improve the productivity of their resources.