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Recognising that stress and burnout are common in the workplace, and even more so within contact centre employees, collaboration and contact centre technologies provider Webex has unveiled AI-powered capabilities in its contact centre portfolios to help improve agent well-being and productivity, resulting in what the company calls “exceptional” customer experiences.
The company believes that burnout causes 50% of agent turnover within contact centres, equating to a cost to business $4.8m each year on average for those with 100 agents.
To combat this, Webex Contact Center will now contain AI-powered capabilities that aim to improve agent well-being and productivity, while simultaneously improving customer experiences. The solution will include AI-powered agent burnout detection to allow businesses to address proactively agent well-being by enabling automated breaks, such as a Thrive Reset, and real-time coaching after challenging customer interactions.
A suggested responses feature uses generative AI (GenAI) to suggest automatically responses to increase agent productivity when responding to customer inquiries on digital channels. Conversation summaries and wrap-ups will aim to provide agents with a clear summarisation of issues and resolutions already explored via self-service and a summary of the call or chat to both the agent and customer once it ends. Agent wrap-ups automatically generate wrap-up codes and actions following every customer interaction, and is said to eliminate an average of five minutes for the agent.
Coaching highlights will generate a dashboard for supervisors showing highest and lowest customer-rated interactions. It then automatically summarises the interactions with the best ratings and provides supervisors with coaching tips based on those findings to train fellow employees. Conversely, highlights from the lowest-rated interactions are captured to then coach lower-performing agent to offer the possibility to foster improvement across the board.
Webex also believes that as employees beyond the contact centre become increasingly critical to resolve customer needs, organisations are challenged with how to connect answer-holding employees to the customer experience journey. It added that it is critical to ensure every interaction is “exceptional” and personalised.
To help solve this, Webex says that it is introducing Customer Experience Essentials to help employees throughout organisations deliver optimal customer experiences and bring the core fundamental capabilities of the Webex Contact Center to Webex Calling users. This, it said, will enable employees outside the contact centre to become specialised agents, leading to faster issue resolution and improved customer satisfaction and so removing the potential need for a call back. It also believes that companies can gain a better understanding of customer issues that need escalation outside of contact centres.
Commenting on what the overall package could deliver, Jeetu Patel, executive vice-president and general manager, security and collaboration at Cisco, said: “At Webex, we are embracing agent wellness as a core value to contribute to a more compassionate, inclusive and progressive business culture. Our commitment to nurturing the well-being of agents means that businesses can build a foundation for growth, empower innovation and provide exceptional experiences to their customers.”
As it was making its announcement, Webex confirmed it is continuing its partnership with behaviour-change technology firm Thrive Global to take “a significant step toward reducing agent turnover and enhancing customer experiences with contact centres”.
The new Webex Contact Center capabilities are in various stages of development and are planned to be in beta by the end of 2023. Agent burnout detection APIs are planned to be in beta in February 2024, and Thrive Reset for Webex Contact Center is planned to be generally available at the end of 2024. The Webex CX Essentials package is planned to be available in the first half of 2024.
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