Conversational AI Cliffs Notes
August 12, 2022 • 5 minute read

Conversational AI in CX: The Cliffs Notes Edition

This time of summer reminds me of my mad dash to do the required reading before the start of the school year. I promise I did read all of those books, but it helped to have the Cliffs Notes versions nearby to refresh my memory of important details.

Similar to my required reading during the years I was in school, Conversational AI is complicated and can require some brushing up of details. It can be overwhelming if you are just starting to learn about it. That’s why we have put together this “Cliff Notes to Conversational AI in CX” that outlines key information and must know takeaways.

The Main Character: Conversational AI

Conversational AI applications are being used by many brands today to automate tasks via self-service and improve both customer and agent experience. Businesses that implement Conversational AI applications also see additional business benefits beyond improved customer experience including reductions in OPEX, better labor optimization, and immediate scalability. 

Conversational AI is not just one technology. It’s rather a set of technologies behind automated messaging and speech-enabled applications that offer human-like interactions between computers and humans. It provides human-like communications by recognizing speech and text, understanding intent, deciphering different languages, and responding in a way that mimics human conversation. Watch our one minute primer video here to learn more.

Supporting Characters

Conversational AI uses various technologies such as ASR, NLP, Dialog management, and machine learning to understand, reach, and learn to communicate with humans at a human level. See a visual on how it works here.

Main Theme

Applied Conversational AI applications are the category of solutions you should be looking at for use in the customer experience space. These types of applications vary in complexity and thus provide different experiences, so it’s important to make sure you choose the right application for your outcome. One of the most crucial decisions you will make is choosing a vendor to partner with who has the expertise in design as well as proven results.

Discussion Questions

What are some examples of Conversational AI applications?

One of the most popular types of Conversational AI in CX are virtual agents, which are advanced Conversational AI applications. They are designed so customers can talk or type just like they would with a human. Virtual agents can also scale across channels and carry context. 

How does Conversational AI improve CX?

Virtual agents, a type of Conversational AI application, are a popular way to provide customer service conversations at scale because they offer a more conversational and natural way for consumers to interact. Consumers are not limited to typing or speaking in a certain way or using specific words or text to solicit responses. The result is a more effective and productive interaction that mimics a conversation with a real human and results in excellent customer service. 

What role can Conversational AI play in optimizing a business’ labor force? 

Automating tasks and offering customers more self-service options via virtual agents allows businesses to do more with less. Customers can take care of what they need to do efficiently and conveniently, while brands can use human agents where they can make the most impact. The result is a better experience for both the customer and the agent.

How does Conversational AI reduce operational costs?

Automating tasks increases efficiency that can lead to reduced costs. Because virtual agents can also scale easily to accommodate increases in volume–both seasonal and unplanned events–they can reduce hiring and training costs associated with this volume.

Can Conversational AI help grow a business?

Hiring rates can affect the growth of your company. When you can’t hire, you can’t grow. Automation with virtual agents supports business growth in this situation by optimizing the labor you have available.

How can Conversational AI help support Business Continuity Planning? (BCP)

When human agents are not available due to circumstances out of control such as during the worldwide pandemic, virtual agents are essential to a BCP and help with scalability, security, and workforce optimization. 

Virtual agents powered by Conversational AI can scale immediately to accommodate an increase in volume–planned or unplanned–and can handle an unlimited number of interactions at the same time. Even if agents are unavailable, customers don’t need to endure long hold times to take care of their tasks.

With virtual agents handling sensitive transactions, human agents are removed from the process. This reduces the risk of them obtaining or illegally using customers’ personal information. Virtual agents also abide by business rules, so they don’t go off script so they would never ask for personal information that is not required.

Virtual agents can help businesses do more with a limited workforce during crucial times. For example, virtual agents can take on specific tasks that can free up human agents to be directed to other areas. 

Are all Conversational AI vendors the same?

The right vendor can make a critical difference in the type of experience you deliver. Just like applications, vendors differ in their type and area of expertise, scalability, and proven results. It’s imperative that your decision-making process includes vendor vetting where you ask detailed questions about experience, design, and referenceable results to ensure your application works exactly the way you want your brand to be represented.


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