The age of the bot and conversational AI brings new challenges in terms of how contact centers engage with potential customers. Here's a sneak preview of an exciting new development.
Consider this. As the coronavirus scare dies off, an airline decides to contact its customers offering cheap flights for a period of time just to get people used to flying again. So it develops an offer and calls its many customers in conversational AI mode.
So the consumer gets a call from a bot whose aim is to sign him up. Now conventional wisdom from the AI guys tells you that this conversational AI should be able to handle the complete session and maybe come out with a sale.
Success is measured in terms of conversions per 100 contacts (for example).
Think of conversational AI as a way of doing some data collection and potentially quite sophisticated processing. But at some point, especially for more complex applications, the bot may hand over the session to a live agent because
The bot can do a great job in saving agent time and providing a qualified flow of prospects; now it needs some help from live agents.
So on the one hand, we have a pool of agents waiting to receive these prospects, and on the other, a funnel, up which prospects rise, until for one of the reasons given, they pop out all ready to speak to a live agent.
But there's one big question: how to manage both the size of the agent pool and the initial launch of calls into the bottom of the funnel?
Why is this important? Remember this process starts with an outbound call and when a prospect emerges from the funnel ready to speak to an agent, you better make sure that an agent is available! Inbound callers hang around in queues waiting for agents. These conversational AI prospects will not. Unless they get transferred virtually immediately to a waiting agent, then many just won't wait around.
How to resolve?
This is classic predictive dialing territory. A highly optimised dialer can tell the contact center how many calls to launch, so as to ensure prospects are not kept waiting when they emerge from the bot funnel. Strong dialer design is an imperative.
And the application is not just outbound voice. The campaign equally could have been launched as a chat bot from the outset, with the same application flow. And note in this case, that prospects emerging from the funnel could then go to a live text chat, or a live voice call.