Robots in Customer Care – Can They Replace Us?

Customer care can truly make or break a business. 

Nowadays, with the on-demand economy blooming, customer support service, as a medium, is required to constantly upgrade its methodology and experiment with modern technology. 

As a result, bots, chatbots, and intelligent virtual agents are more likely to deal with your request as a user next time you need a solution.  

Their popularity has been on the rise for the past few years, and indeed their benefits are multiple. Yet, one cannot help but wonder – are robots going to displace humans from their positions of customer care evangelists completely? 

What are bots, chatbots, and intelligent virtual agents?  

In their simplest form, they are an Artificial Intelligence (AI) software that can stimulate a conversation through messaging applications, websites, or directly through the phone.  

Their conversational skills are powered by cognitive process automation and natural language understanding – features that mimic the way a human’s brain works. Consequently, they have the ability to analyze queries and extract relevant responses, which they deliver in different forms. For instance, generic and predefined manuals, instruction texts based exclusively on user-provided data, or texts retrieved from a knowledge base that contains other possible answers to a customer’s query. 

Why are they becoming so popular?  

Bots, chatbots, and intelligent virtual agents are often described as one of the most advanced and promising inventions. And of course, businesses, too, find them efficient… sometimes to the extent that they prefer them over regular human representatives.  

Why? – Being equipped with a range of critical machine learning and problem-solving tools, robots reduce response time and have 24-hour availability. And because an estimated 83% of online shoppers worldwide require support during their buyer journey, naturally, businesses rely on robots to provide such real-time assistance, no matter the day, hour, and time zone. Having no physical needs to take care of, unlike human supporters, they can keep on working continuously.  

Moreover, implementing virtual agents is significantly much more cost-effective than hiring a team of employees. Also, their machine accuracy decreases human errors and optimizes productivity. 

Will they replace humans?  

AI-powered customer service is indeed a trend that we shall see more of in the future. However, the truth is that this tendency will not entirely replace human interaction, or at least not for now.   

Customer support is a coin with two sides – urgency and emotion. If we accept that robots are positively better at dealing with urgent queries, then humans are indeed the only option when it comes to emotion.  

Contrary to AI, which are only responsive to data, people have the ability to feel, concern, and imagine. They represent authentic intelligence, which anticipates and works better with unexpected changes and distorted informational exchange, or in other words, with high-stress situations. No machine can replace the caring and empathy that a live care evangelist can offer to a client.  

And no matter that smart tech is making its mark, there are years to come before it overruns customer care. That is why, for now, humans and robots shall work together. 

If you are wondering how to incorporate AI within your business’ customer care practices and which application is the appropriate one, give us a call, and we will discuss all details on the matter. 

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