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Generative AI Expo Platinum Sponsor Kore.ai Shows Shift Toward AI-Driven Customer Service

By Greg Tavarez

Remember the days of spending hours on hold, waiting for a customer service representative?  The landscape of customer service is undergoing a dramatic shift, and those days are going away.

Today's customers expect immediate, personalized service, available 24/7 across their preferred channels. This demand is driving a surge in automation and self-service solutions. Companies turn to AI to meet these expectations and deliver a seamless customer experience. 

In fact, new research from Generative AI Expo Platinum Sponsor Kore.ai, a provider of conversational AI technology, shows a growing acceptance of AI-powered customer service from both agents and consumers.

The company's 2024 Agent Experience (AX) and Customer Experience (CX) benchmark reports showed that agents ranked advanced AI tools for understanding customer needs. The AI tools reduce search time and streamline tasks above factors like competitive salaries and fair working conditions.  This preference suggests a desire for technology that enhances their work experience.

However, the report also highlighted a gap between agent needs and contact center implementation. While 72% of agents expressed a strong interest in intelligent virtual assistants, or IVAs, 62% reported a lack of AI use cases in their workplaces. Additionally, outdated systems contribute to agent frustration, with 91% reporting technology-related issues.

Interestingly, though, the study did find that AI education positively impacts agent satisfaction. Agents trained on AI reported higher job satisfaction compared to those without training.

Firstly, understanding AI tools puts confidence in agents. They feel more confident navigating the technology and using its capabilities to resolve customer issues faster and more efficiently. This alleviates stress and frustration often associated with repetitive tasks or information overload.

Secondly, AI training has a chance to create a sense of being at the forefront of innovation.  Agents may feel valued for their role in integrating cutting-edge technology into customer service. This could lead to increased engagement and a feeling of being part of a forward-thinking organization.

Lastly, AI education might open doors to new career paths.  Agents with AI expertise might be seen as more valuable assets. This can lead to opportunities for advancement or specialization within the AI-driven customer service landscape.

Moving on from the agent side, the report also examined the customer perspective. The report found that consumers prioritize accuracy, efficiency and seamless omnichannel support over immediate access to live agents. Notably, effectiveness and accuracy ranked higher than live agent access for the first time.

Furthermore, the performance gap between IVAs and live agents is narrowing. In the U.S., the customer satisfaction rating for IVAs is only 4% lower than expectations for live agents. This gap disappears entirely in the Asia-Pacific region. This suggests that IVAs are catching up, potentially due to cultural preferences for efficiency or advancements in AI technology specific to those regions.

While comfort with IVAs is growing, when it comes to specific sectors, healthcare prioritizes direct human contact. Retail stands out as a leader in AI adoption, with customers expressing strong interest in AI-assisted product searches and purchases. AI is being trusted for advisory and transactional roles.

Finally, the report emphasizes the appeal of 24/7 access for agents and consumers.  Over three-fourths of consumers find constant service availability attractive, with even baby boomers, at 68%, recognizing the benefits of self-service options. Additionally, secure communication and conversational voice capabilities are key factors driving consumer acceptance of AI-powered customer service.

“Adopting AI technologies in call centers not only enhances service quality for customers but also transforms agent roles by streamlining routine tasks and improving work conditions,” said Raj Koneru, CEO of Kore.ai. “We aim for this research to guide organizations looking to elevate their service interactions with AI-powered automation.”

The long-story-short of the report is that to improve customer experience, increase agent satisfaction and optimize contact center performance, using AI-powered solutions is essential.

Kore.ai is a Platinum Sponsor of Generative AI Expo, taking place February 11-13, 2025, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Generative AI Expo discusses the evolution of GenAI and feature conversations focused on the potential for GenAI across industries and how the technology is already being used to create new opportunities for businesses to improve operations, enhance customer experiences, and create new growth opportunities. Kore.ai will be in booth #2246 in the exhibit hall.




Edited by Greg Tavarez
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