We’re entering an exciting new era of AI which will completely reshape the way we work in many areas – especially in the field of customer service and sales. Salesforce is a company which has been using AI in its customer service for some time but now it will – along with many other organisations like it – embrace the full power of AI to supercharge productivity and accelerate case resolution.
We’ve all seen chatbots on company’s websites when we need to ask questions about our product or our service. Nearly seven years ago, Salesforce launched its platform – Einstein for Service – which gave agents AI-powered capabilities to customer service agents. These included recommended next-best actions and responses to customer inquiries, as well as automating case summarisation.
But now, generative AI is about to take service operations to the next level of efficiency and personalisation. We’ve all heard about programs like ChatGPT – a generative artificial intelligence (AI) model developed by OpenAI. ChatGPT and others like it including Anthropic and Bard, are built on pre-trained, large language models which help users create unique text, images, and other content from text-based prompts.
These new AI programs will change the game for customer service, helping companies operate more efficiently, develop more empathetic responses to customer requests, and resolve cases faster.
Up until now, customer service organisations have been fighting an uphill battle. Currently, service agents face record case volumes and customers are frustrated by growing wait times. Often, to manage the case load, agents will simultaneously work on multiple customers’ issues at once while waiting for data from legacy systems to load.
After an agent closes a case, they may enter case notes, but these notes can get lost in the ether and other agents may end up problem-solving similar issues from scratch, not knowing their colleague had already solved it. With nearly half of customers citing poor service experiences as the main reason they switched brands last year, the pressure is on for companies to find a better way forward.
AI will affect sales as well. Take a look at the video below about Salesforce’s Einstein GPT:
This will all change with the new AI platforms
With generative AI programs layered onto Einstein for Service and Customer 360, companies will have the ability to automatically generate personalised responses for agents to quickly email or message to customers.
Agents will be able to use the AI for case notes so these are automatically generated, drastically cutting the time to create knowledge and making it easier to keep up-to-date. The enhanced relevance and quality of knowledge across the company will make self service portals and chatbots more valuable, freeing human agents to spend more time deeply engaging on complex issues and building long-term customer relationships.
There’ll still be a need for some human agents
The current wave of generative models are very powerful, but in a small number of cases, they can generate biased and even harmful outputs, as well as made-up facts – called ‘hallucinations’. This is why keeping a human reviewer in the loop, whether it’s a service agent or knowledge expert, will be important for the foreseeable future.
Given the extensive opportunities and challenges related to generative AI, Salesforce recently published the five guidelines for trusted generative AI development, and explained the potential for generative AI in enterprise tech and how to balance this transformative tech with the reality and risks.
Layering generative AI on top of Einstein capabilities will automate the creation of smarter, more personalised chatbot responses which can deeply understand, anticipate and respond to customer issues. This will power better informed answers to nuanced customer queries, helping to increase first-time resolution rates.
With generative AI tapping into customer resolution data to analyse conversation sentiment and patterns, service organisations will be able to drive continuous improvement, identify trends, and accelerate bot training and updates.
Auto-generate knowledge articles
Over time, service organisations will use generative AI to draft knowledge articles not only based on case notes, but also Slack conversations, messaging history, and data across Customer 360 to accelerate agent case resolution and shift even more support cases to self-service experiences. This will alleviate pressure on call centers and agents.
Fast-track case swarming
We’re already seeing many service teams work more effectively with case swarming – where agents bring in experts from across their organisation to help solve complex cases or larger incidents. Now imagine how much more efficient they will be if the lessons from previous case swarms can all be shared and applied.
Companies will use generative AI to identify similar past cases – identify who in the organisation has the best, most relevant skills to address the issue, and recommend resolutions and customer communications to fast-track many aspects of the case swarm.
Sales force has carried out some new research about how we feel about all of this new AI. One thousand Australian workers were surveyed on their perceptions of the digital skills required to do their job today and into the future.
The research also finds Aussie workers think Artificial Intelligence (AI) capability is the most likely digital skill to increase in importance over the next five years. But while half of the Australians surveyed say they’re excited about using AI in their job, less than 10% say they use it already.
Here are some of the key findings from the Salesforce research:
- Artificial Intelligence skills were rated as the #1 digital skill most likely to increase in importance
- 49% of Australians say that they are excited about the use of generative AI for their job
- 53% say they are aware of how generative AI will impact their work
- Only 7% of Australian workers are using AI in their current role
- 97% of workers believe that businesses should prioritise digital skills development for their employees
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