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In today’s online world, there is still a huge demand for good old-fashioned customer service, over the phone, on a website, or via a mobile app. Despite AI bots and automated services being an ideal customer service solution in some instances, for example, quick and simple queries such as track my parcel, where’s my order, pay my bill, some customer queries can be unique and complex.
Retailers should adopt a blended approach, using a customer service team alongside AI solutions to ensure they provide a great customer experience. A survey carried out by the CGS last reported that 86% of consumers prefer to interact with a human agent. While 71% would be less likely to use a brand without human customer service representatives available. However, 30% believe that virtual assistants do make it easier to address customer service issues. Let’s take a look at some of the benefits of using human resources:
When customers wish to speak to a human representative and are unable to, this causes major frustration. We also know that one of the key skills needed for a role in customer service is empathy - having the patience and understanding to compute queries and offer helpful solutions. As competition for retailers continues to rise and consumer expectations only heighten, you could be losing loyal customers by failing to meet their needs.
Despite rapid progression in technology over the last decade, it is still not 100% reliable. Often there is unplanned downtime or technical issues with automation solutions. Therefore, opting for a blended approach prevents you from leaving yourself open to vulnerability and the prospect of being uncontactable, offering an extra layer of reliability.
Feedback is one of the greatest benefits of using human operators. With agents speaking directly with customers in a conversational way, you’re able to collect qualitative data that may not have been possible through AI solutions alone. Having useful and tangible feedback enables you to improve your customer experience and your product or service to help attract and retain customers.
As AI continues to improve and revolutionise industries such as banking and travel, what does this mean for the future of customer service? The answers aren’t yet entirely clear, but ultimately, we (humans) prefer human interaction to AI. Therefore there will always be a need for human operatives, whether that's on a customer service hotline or at the supermarket. Customer service professionals should continue to upskill and be rest assured that society will continue to drive demand for human resources.
Are you looking for your next Customer Service role? At Search Call & Contact Centre, we work with some of the UK’s leading brands and believe that a career in customer service can offer many benefits including, flexibility, career progression, and a competitive take-home salary.