Best practices for implementing a chatbot or virtual agent



Article by NICE Managing Director for A / NZ Rod Lester.

Contact centers are increasingly turning to omnichannel solutions to better support their customers. Today’s customers expect more flexibility in reaching businesses whenever they need to, including outside of standard business hours, and in whatever ways are most convenient for them. Integrating chatbots and virtual agents into contact center operations can dramatically improve the customer experience (CX).

However, integrating digital solutions for an enhanced CX is not as easy as simply deploying new tools. For example, poorly integrated chatbots can be more of a handicap than an asset, so it is essential that contact centers follow best practices for implementing virtual assistants and chatbots.

Before contact center managers deploy chatbots and virtual assistants in their operations, they must first determine the company’s readiness for artificial intelligence (AI), both from a standpoint customer and employee.

By carefully assessing an organization’s maturity for AI and identifying potential customer use cases in advance, organizations can ensure that they are implementing the solutions that are most appropriate for their needs.

Without knowing the problems that digital solutions will help solve, or without being prepared for the continued investment required to maintain those solutions, organizations may rush to deploy inappropriate AI technologies, which will not provide a return on investment. or CX improvements. In fact, the CX quality can drop if the solution is not the right one.

It’s also critical that organizations determine how chatbots and virtual assistants fit into existing processes and complement the customer journey and employee experience.

Contact centers that integrate chatbots need to know what experience they want their customers to have and when the chatbot should hand over to a human agent before investing in a complementary digital solution. Chatbots and virtual assistants need to integrate seamlessly, both in terms of the customer journey and data sharing with human agents, to be truly effective.

New contact center AI technologies harness sophisticated, purpose-built behavior models that enable agents to access real-time training and guidance to deliver service excellence with every customer interaction.

Customers don’t want to repeat information; it is expected that if they provide information to a chatbot, the information will be passed on to a human agent when the need arises. Without this effective transmission of information, customers will end up with a negative experience. By leveraging the latest AI technologies, contact centers can ensure agents have the information they need, when they need it, enabling them to deliver extraordinary CX and improve customer satisfaction.

Setting up chatbots and virtual assistants requires contact centers to have a clear strategy. It is essential to select the most appropriate solutions and integrate them to meet the needs of businesses and customers.

Rushing to implement solutions can lead to poor CX and have significant negative impacts on bottom lines. Working with an experienced contact center partner can help contact center decision makers clarify their needs and choose the solution that is most likely to provide maximum benefit to their business.


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