Beginner’s Guide to Customer Service Automation

Automating customer service does not necessarily mean heavy investment or sacrificing personalization.

Customer service automation aims to reduce the amount of human effort in customer service, particularly for executing repetitive tasks, solving low complexity issues, or answering FAQs. 

Now that personalization and humanization of automated customer service is not a significant concern, the only thing organizations need to monitor and avoid is overreliance on technology

It is important to maintain a robust man-machine collaboration to optimize the power of automation fully and not sacrifice customer satisfaction.

What is Customer Service Automation?

An automated customer service is an approach of support that provides autonomous systems such as chatbots or other conversational AI, to reduce human effort involved in providing support to customer requests.

Customer service automation offers 24/7 support and is primarily used to assist human customer agents. Automation makes customer service pleasant and convenient for both the customers and agents.

Customer service automation provides a solution to the long-standing issue of mismatch between customer expectation and business support capability. With automation, you can provide the support your customers expect in a hassle-free cost-effective manner.

Why is Customer Service Automation important for businesses?

The one and only reason needed: Customers simply prefer automated services, like self-service, chatbots and etc.

Customers are only interested in faster and more efficient resolutions.

Quick resolutions and low first response time can boost your customer satisfaction significantly.

Automated customer service simplifies the process and gives you the time to focus on more important and complex interactions with customers. The intention behind automation is not to remove the human effort from the equation but rather to provide them with the support they need to increase their productivity.

Customer service automation not only helps improve agent productivity by taking care of preliminary questions. More importantly, it provides 24/7 support, reduces first response time (FRT) and improves customer satisfaction (CSAT). Automation leaves no room for human error, making it incredibly reliable and hassle-free.

To put it simply, with customer service automation, you stand to gain 3 vital benefits:

  1. 24/7 support: Being easy to reach at any time for assistance is no longer an expectation; it is the norm.
  2. Empower customers to help themselves: Not only does this help handle FAQs, but customers can help themselves whenever they need it without relying on someone else.
  3. Enhance Agent productivity: Agents no longer need to spend their time resolving minor issues but instead can focus on resolving more complex issues faster.

Here are some examples of Customer Service Automation

The examples below explore how customer service automation solutions can help you deliver personalized customer service by eliminating repetitiveness, backlog, and complexity.

1. Canned responses

We’ve all witnessed impersonal and frigid automated responses from brands that leave a bitter taste in our mouths. That’s because these are automated responses, which addresses issues in a one-size-fits-all manner, but lately, there has been a shift from this approach towards canned responses with the help of AI-enabled personalization.

What are canned responses?

These are pre-written responses to frequently asked questions that resolve low complexity issues like login queries, subscription queries, account information queries, and many more.

Canned responses can be incredibly effective in reducing ticket volume, first response time, average handling time, and other essential customer service KPIs.

2. Self-Service

Your agents or customer service team must be well versed at writing emails that cater to a variety of customer questions, so why not use those emails as solution articles or guides for customers to view at their convenience?

Everyone knows the most significant factor influencing customer satisfaction is speed, customers want answers to their questions immediately. Providing self-service not only addresses the issue of speed but also empowers customers to be more independent rather than relying on someone else.

According to a study by Harvard Business Review, across industries, fully 81% of all customers attempt to take care of matters themselves before reaching out to a live representative.

Creating a comprehensive knowledge base is a great way to develop ready-made answers for frequently asked questions. To create an extensive knowledge base, you can rely on FAQs, past conversations, product information, and other essential resources that can help customers avoid needing to contact your customer service agent.

With self-service, businesses are not restricted to just using articles on help sites, but they can also use video tutorials or guides.

Language would no longer be a concern since you can translate your knowledge base into several languages, so it is understandable to a global audience.

3. Chatbots and AI-drive Customer Service Automation

The introduction of live chat revolutionized the customer service industry, customers for the first time were able to get support in real-time. However, agents could still get overwhelmed by the volume of tickets, and it did not provide a solution for 24/7 support without scaling your customer service team.

That’s why chatbots have been overwhelmingly successful, they were simply the solution to multiple problems.

According to a study by Cognizant, 69% of customers said they’d prefer chatbots for receiving instant responses, and the same per cent said they’re most likely to use chatbots for service related inquiries.

Standard practice is to have a set of responses to a list of frequently asked questions. So when a customer sends a query, the chatbot retrieves and responds with the answer immediately.

Above all, customers expect service to be fast, easy and helpful, but they still appreciate customer service that’s personal and understanding.

Chatbots provide a solution to the age-old problem of delivering a unique customer experience at scale for new emerging businesses to set them apart from the competition.

But Chatbots aren’t the only form of artificial intelligence that is essential for customer service; using a helpdesk that is AI-powered can streamline and simplify customer service.

Our AI-driven platform at Simplify360 provides businesses a plethora of information like ticket priority, customer sentiment before and after the resolution, and much more.

Conclusion: Why Customer Service Automation?

The benefits of automating customer service depend on the type, but there are a few general benefits regardless of the kind of automation.

  • Increases productivity
  • Streamlined customer service
  • Lesser room for human error
  • Maintains consistency
  • Improves customer experience

If customer service automation is used wisely and optimized the right way, businesses can achieve the delicate balance of personalized customer service at scale.

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