Customer Service, Artificial Intelligence

Key Signs Your Customer Service is Ready for AI

AI is a game-changer in the customer service world. It provides faster responses that are still personalized. It eases the workload of human agents—freeing them up to manage more complex cases.

But is AI right for your organization? Here's how to find out. Review the top signs that show your CS is ready for AI. There’s also a list of signs below that indicate you’re not set-up to maximize AI benefits—or at least not yet.

Determining if AI is a match for you can put you one step closer to scaling your business.

8 Signs Your CS Org is Ready for AI

1. Your policies are standardized

To put AI in place, it’s imperative to have standard procedures for handling customer issues. For example, if a customer reports a problem with a package that never arrived, there should be a protocol. With established methods, AI can follow them. But if your agents handle issues on a case-by-case basis, AI won't be able to function well.

2. You have high volumes of repetitive ticket types

You need a big enough problem for AI to solve and consistent responses with which to help solve it. Repetitive tickets-types are perfect for AI: it can manage them much faster than humans. The best part? AI doesn’t get burnt out or frustrated like agents. AI can tackle large volumes, giving your customers speedy, accurate service 24/7.

Common examples of repetitive tickets include shipping and return questions, technical issues like password problems, and responding to website bugs. If you have plenty of these ticket types (hundreds or thousands a day), AI will breathe fresh air into your CS.

3. You already leverage self-service tools

Do you have a self-service portal for customers to find answers? Do you have a robust FAQ library? With these fundamentals in place, it’s easier for AI to boost these efforts and provide customers with quick answers.

4. Your agents are overwhelmed with CS tickets

When your agents get burnt out, they’re more likely to get frustrated and make mistakes. They might be less empathetic toward customers. And it might also take longer to respond to tickets—increasing wait times and frustration for consumers.

AI can help ease the load of your agents. Not only can it help staff feel less overwhelmed, but it also gives your customers the quick responses they so desperately desire.

5. You have a high volume of tier-one customer support tickets

Tier-one customer tickets are ideal for AI because they can handle them with unprecedented speed and precision. Your agents can work through more complicated tickets or offer empathy to an upset customer. On the other hand, if you only have a few Tier-one tickets a day, AI probably won't offer much noticeable relief.

6. Your incoming volume rate spikes or plummets inconsistently

If your ticket numbers soar during certain times, it can be hard for your agents to keep up. If numbers plummet, your agents sit there without work to do. AI helps by scaling to volume naturally. It responds just as quickly to 1,000 cases as it does to ten.

By implementing AI for these scenarios, you cut waste and give your customers a consistent experience. No matter when they contact you, they'll see a similar response time. With consistent experiences, customers are happier (increasing CSAT scores)—and business keeps trucking along.

7.Your data is structured and accessible

If the answer to your customer’s problem is written on scraps of paper or exists as a warehouse PDF, then AI is not going to be that useful. The data has to be accessible via API or webhooks.

8. There is a source of truth to solve the customer’s problem

Your data not only has to be accessible, there has to be a source of truth for the AI to look up. If there’s nothing in your system that holds the answer to the customer’s question then AI is stuck with the same problem as your human agents. For instance, if you’re in the dress rental business but have no idea when the dress a customer has ordered will be returned by the customer to has it now, no AI is going to help. There has to be a truth for the AI to access.

 

4 Signs You’re Not Ready for AI

Identifying that your organization isn’t right for AI can save you valuable time and resources. From looking at your processes to the size of your business, here are the key signs that AI isn’t your best solution—at least not right now.

1. You don't have standard processes to govern ticket resolution

If you don’t have CS procedures in place, AI won’t be able to help resolve tickets. You need to have set methods for AI to follow. A guidebook for AI is an essential first step just as it is for scaling any human organization or hiring a BPO.

2. Your agents treat customers inconsistently

If your agents offer solutions based on a feeling or other nebulous factor, it's an impossible process for AI to emulate. While individual treatment of tickets sounds nice, massive time is required and inconsistency becomes a problem for customer satisfaction. For instance, if you give a refund to a customer who seems angry, but not to customers who remain calm, customers won’t get the same experience every time. They can no longer rely on your brand's approach. Plus, AI won’t be able to determine when to give a refund or when not to.

3. Your customer support team is small

AI is great for larger teams and ticket volumes. If you’re small or don’t have a team that requires demand, AI probably isn’t necessary.

Some good questions to ask yourself: Do you have three or more dedicated agents? Do you have a helpdesk? Do you have a few hundred (or thousand) tickets a day? These are signs that AI could help. If you answered 'no' to these questions, AI isn’t a solution you need yet.

4. You don't have helpdesk software

Helpdesk software allows customers and staff to communicate about problems and questions. It helps manage tickets and queries from beginning to end. With this type of system in place, AI offers both speed and precision for resolutions. If you don’t have helpdesk software, it’s a step you‘ll want to take before implementing AI and it probably means you don’t have a big enough problem to solve just yet.

As with deploying any technology, it’s important to know if AI is the right avenue before taking the plunge. Still unsure? Schedule a free consultation to determine if AI is right for you. We'll also discuss any steps needed to get your business AI-ready.