In redkLIVE’s 8th podcast episode: Preparing Customer Service Teams for AI and Automation, Elly Tolervy-Suter, Enterprise Account Executive at Ada, and Hideki Hashimura, CRM/CX Strategist and CMO at redk, share valuable insights on the importance of equipping customer service teams to navigate the evolving landscape of AI and automation.

In the below podcast, Hideki and Elly draw from two Forrester reports: one on the status of CRM in financial services and the other on how digital experiences are coming together. Their discussion revolves around the significance of improving customer experience, and the challenges and opportunities that arise from integrating AI into customer service operations.

The Significance of Customer Experience

“Improving CX is a priority for a lot of these organisations. Whereas what we’ve seen historically is that customer support has mainly been seen as an afterthought, a cost centre, a very siloed part of the business.” – Elly Tolervy-Suter

Improving the customer experience has emerged as one of the top priorities for businesses in the next 12 months. Elly and Hideki emphasise that having a consistent and exceptional experience throughout the customer journey is becoming increasingly important. Customers no longer differentiate between departments or touchpoints; they expect a seamless and satisfying experience regardless of their interaction point.

The Convergence of Customer Experience and AI

The Forrester report brings attention to the convergence of customer experience and the disruptive influence of AI. Hideki points out that brands must focus on creating immersive experiences that are available through different channels and platforms, both “on the glass” (front-end interfaces) and “below the glass” (backend systems). This integration enables the delivery of more invisible and seamless experiences that meet the heightened expectations of customers.

Generative AI as a Horizontal Solution

“Financial services, like any other industry, are looking for very verticalised solutions. However, in the case of generative AI, there’s a lot of learnings that we can take from other industries.” – Hideki Hashimura

Hideki highlights the unique position of generative AI as a horizontal solution that can be applied across the customer journey. While financial services often seek vertical solutions for various aspects of their operations, generative AI presents a disruptive force that can enhance customer experience and create immersive, personalised interactions.

The Challenges of Email in Customer Service

While email remains a widely used customer service tool, Elly and Hideki discuss its challenges. They highlight how emails often introduce friction in the customer journey due to automated responses, lack of interactivity, and limited context.

“The big challenge with email is that it fails to deliver a complete experience… When you have to go back and forth through email, you lose the fluidity of a conversation that can be provided through conversational tools.” – Hideki Hashimura

These limitations call for exploring alternative solutions that provide a more comprehensive and satisfying customer experience.

Empowering Teams with AI

“Empowering people with AI, as opposed to replacing people with AI.” – Elly Tolervy-Suter

Hideki and Elly discuss augmenting human capabilities through AI, allowing employees to deliver enhanced customer interactions. They advocate for a cultural shift that embraces AI as a tool, fostering collaboration between humans and technology.

Preparing customer service teams for the future

The podcast discussion underscores the significance of prioritising customer experience, considering the challenges associated with traditional customer service channels like email. By harnessing the power of AI and empowering teams with the right tools and training, organisations can meet customer expectations and deliver exceptional experiences in the era of AI and automation.

As businesses adapt to evolving customer demands, integrating AI and automation holds immense potential to transform customer service and elevate customer experiences to new heights. Get in touch today to learn more.