By Levis Wilson, CEO Haloocom Technologies Pvt Ltd
The global call center outsourcing market is on track to hit an astounding USD 429.8 billion by 2028, fueled by an ever-growing demand for exceptional customer service, the widespread adoption of cloud-based call center solutions, and an increasing inclination toward outsourcing call center operations. In a recent Statista report, the industry, employing over 17 million people globally, particularly thrives in the Asia Pacific, constituting 44% of the global workforce.
The Changing Landscape: Automation and AI in Call Centers
As automation and artificial intelligence continue their relentless evolution, the future of employment in the call center sector remains uncertain. While some roles may become automated, there’s a parallel emergence of new positions demanding advanced skills and knowledge.
Customer Service’s Pivotal Role in Brand Loyalty
Customer service stands as the linchpin for brand loyalty, with a resounding 95% of organisations acknowledging its significance, as per Microsoft’s 2018 research. Poor service, as indicated by an American Express study, can prompt a 33% shift in brand preferences. Tailored customer engagement strategies, maintaining an impressive 89% customer retention, underscore the importance of personalised approaches.
Sustainable Customer Satisfaction with AI
Maintaining customer satisfaction is a business imperative, and artificial intelligence plays a crucial role in achieving this by providing an interactive platform and swift responses. Conversational AI tools are projected to substantially reduce labor costs in contact centers by $80 billion by 2026, offering a cost-effective alternative to traditional human-centric solutions.
AI Chatbots: A Game-Changer in Cost Efficiency
Enter AI chatbots—a cost-effective alternative to the ongoing costs of maintaining a team of human agents. While the initial investment may be higher, the long-term operational expenses of an AI chatbot are generally lower. This cost advantage is a driving factor behind the increasing adoption of AI-based solutions in customer service, enabling businesses to enhance efficiency and reduce expenses.
For instance, let’s consider the average monthly cost of a call center agent, encompassing salary and additional expenses, which stands at approximately Rs. 30,000. Assuming an agent dedicates around 15 minutes to resolving each query and can manage 4 to 5 interactions per hour, each treated as a separate query, they could effectively resolve 36–40 queries in a day, totaling 720 queries per month. Based on this, an agent-centric query solution would incur a cost of approximately Rs. 41.67 per query. However, the introduction of AI offers a substantially more economical alternative, allowing organisations to achieve a significant cost reduction and scale their customer experience (CX) without being reliant on human resources.
Personalised Service Through AI: A Dual Approach
Effective customer service goes beyond promptness—it thrives when responses are personalized, taking into account the emotional state of the customer. This dual approach of cost-effectiveness and personalised service is pivotal in reshaping the landscape of call center operations.
The Emergence of Agentless Contact Centers
Natural Language Processing (NLP) serves a dual role, benefiting customers and offering indispensable support to agents during their work hours. Agent assist technology leverages the power of AI and machine learning, providing real-time suggestions and delivering relevant information to human agents across various industries, including telecom and retail.
Innovations in AI and ML-based NLP Technologies
The dynamic digital era calls for innovations in AI and ML-based NLP technologies, reshaping the industry and giving rise to Experience Communications as a Service (XCaas) platforms. The call center landscape is undergoing a transformative shift towards agentless contact centers, exemplified by innovations like Haloocom’s HEXA—an advanced search engine streamlining tasks related to call quality, audit, dispute, and conflict management.
Tech-Forward Call Centers: The Future is Now
Tech-forward call centers are embracing the inevitable shift towards agentless contact centers, marked by transformative technologies like HEXA and AI-ROBO. Companies, including Haloocom, are optimising productivity and achieving remarkable cost savings through cutting-edge CTI integrations with platforms like Hubspot, Leadsquared, and Zoho.
The Future: AI, Automation, and Specialized Human Roles
As automation and AI continue to advance, the role of human agents is likely to evolve towards more specialized and analytical tasks, while AI handles routine customer interactions. This transformation is inevitable and will fundamentally reshape the future of call center operations.
The call center industry is at a crossroads, with the advent of agentless contact centers ushering in a new era of efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and personalized service. As we navigate this transformative landscape, companies like Haloocom are at the forefront, paving the way for a tech-forward future in customer service.