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I wrote today’s post for RingCentral. It covers a joint research study they conducted in partnership with Metrigy about the impact that AI is having on both the employee experience and the customer experience.

I feel like I keep saying this: “Artificial Intelligence (AI) is the hottest topic in employee experience and customer experience right now.” I’ve been saying it for a while now, but it’s true! The conversations range from how to best use AI to improve the employee experience and the customer experience to how it will impact employees (job loss?) and customers (creepiness?). In the end, I think the results speak for themselves – the outcomes have thus far been positive.

There is a growing acceptance and reliance on AI, according to a study published by Metrigy and RingCentral titled, How AI is Changing Employee and Customer Experiences.

There were certainly some interesting findings in the research. For starters, almost half of the 700 companies included in the study already use AI for customer and/or employee interactions. And, apparently, the commitment to using AI to improve either experience isn’t just lip service; the average annual AI tech spend on employee experience and customer experience, according to the study, is $3.3 million, with spending increases planned. The good news is that about half of these companies are already seeing a return on their AI investments.

How is it impacting both employee and customer experiences?

Let’s start with the employee experience – especially because we know that the employee experience drives the customer experience. It has to. Without employees, we have no one to design, build, sell, implement, install, deliver, service, or support our products. Without employees, there is no need for customers.

For employees, AI can help to reduce burnout and increase efficiency, productivity, and satisfaction levels. Some of the ways it can do that are by:

  • Automating routine, menial, repetitive tasks
  • Managing workloads, scheduling meetings, and setting reminders
  • Assisting on calls to streamline and speed up issue resolution
  • Summarizing calls or meetings to save time
  • Analyzing data and gleaning insights from vast amounts of data
  • Personalizing learning and training modules and programs

Trust me. There are a lot of other ways that AI can be used to benefit employees and their experiences. Metrigy’s study found that 40% of companies reported that AI reduces the number of customer interactions requiring live support, shortens the time of interactions, reduces the time for after-call work, helps with re/scheduling appointments, gives agents advice to meet sales quotas, and gives agents advice to meet service KPIs.

For customers, AI can help to increase satisfaction by simplifying interactions and personalizing experiences. Just a few of the ways it can do that are by:

  • Creating and delivering content based on individual customer preferences and behaviors
  • Orchestrating journeys and being there when and where they need you with next best actions to ensure they achieve their desired outcomes
  • Providing multi-language customer support
  • Being available 24/7 for customer support
  • Predicting future behaviors to engage proactively and prescribe personalized offers and content

As we consider moving forward with AI, we can’t ignore brands’ top concerns about using it. The top three concerns are the quality of the data set, data privacy, and malicious use of technology. I’m guessing these are all customer concerns, too.

Don’t get left behind when it comes to AI. There are a lot of great use cases and a lot of great benefits for employees, for customers, and for the business! If you haven’t yet started using AI in your business, consider a few basics before you begin: Why do we need AI? What problems will it solve for employees, for customers, and for the business? How will we measure success? Do we have the right data to ensure that we get the most out of it? Do we have the right tools and technology, as well? And don’t forget to involve employees in the decisions and then train them on how to work together with AI.

It’s time to join the 62.5% of the most successful companies (defined in the study as those that “realized higher-than-average improvements in business success metrics through the use of AI”) that already use AI.

We see the wave coming. Now this time next year, every company has to implement it — not even have a strategy. Implement it. ~ Emad Mostaque, founder and CEO, Stability AI

ABOUT ANNETTE

Annette Franz is an internationally recognized customer experience thought leader, coach, speaker, and author. In 2019, she published her first book, Customer Understanding: Three Ways to Put the “Customer” in Customer Experience (and at the Heart of Your Business); it’s available on Amazon in both paperback and Kindle formats. In 2022, she published her second book, Built to Win: Designing a Customer-Centric Culture That Drives Value for Your Business [Advantage|ForbesBooks], which is available to purchase on Amazon, Books A Million!, Target, Barnes & Noble, and thousands of other outlets around the world! Sign up for our newsletter for updates, insights, and other great content that you can use to up your EX and CX game.

Image courtesy of Markus Winkler on Unsplash.