As the contact center industry looks toward ChatGPT and other emerging technologies, the positive possibilities seem endless. Information that can be updated and delivered instantaneously by an agent to a customer looks like a productivity boost as well as a driver of positive customer experiences. But are there potential operational pitfalls that leaders need to be thinking about?

In considering potential pitfalls when thinking about ChatGPT and AI within your contact center environment, let’s break them down into three categories: mitigating risk, quality assurance and the supervisor, and the employee and gig worker experience.

Mitigating Risk

  • Mitigating risk is a top priority for leaders today since class action lawsuits are a real possibility when there is a problem with a product or service. What if a customer calls in on Tuesday and another customer calls in on Thursday with the same question? Will they each get the same correct answer? How does a company protect itself from litigation if agents have provided consumers with different information based on the day and time they called, emailed, or chatted with the company?

  • Audits happen on a regular basis in regulated industries. If the information is constantly changing, a company must have an audit trail. Every change must be documented to stay within regulations, and this documentation must be automated. Doing it manually leaves the risk of human error, so how does a company provide an accurate audit trail?

Quality Assurance and the Supervisor

  • Within a contact center environment, quality assurance plays a big role to make sure the agents perform consistently and the information that is being delivered to the customer is accurate. One of the questions on a QA score card is “Did the agent offer accurate information to the customer?” The information that is given to a customer on Tuesday may be accurate, but if the call was recorded and the quality assurance agent listens to the Thursday call and checks the information that was offered to the customer, will it be the same? Will this change in information be documented in the quality scorecard, and if so, how?

  • The supervisor that coaches the agent will listen to that same call and will check for accuracy in the information that the agent offers to the customer. Will the information be the same when they listen to the call and check the information accuracy? If not, how will the supervisor coach the agent? Will the scoring of the call be accurate? What if the agent and the supervisor disagree on the comments or the score based on the day and time that the information was offered to the agent in the system?

Employee/Gig Worker Experience

  • Agent confidence is key to job satisfaction. The agent needs to confidently find the right answers for the customer, and they need to believe that the information they are giving the customer is the most up to date and the most accurate. How can that happen if the information is different on Tuesday than it is on Wednesday? Will the agent have confidence that what they are saying to the customer is correct? Will their uncertainty lead to frustration? Will that lead them to come to work late or quit their job? Attrition costs the company money and risks the customer experience.

Everyone Wants the Same Thing

The company and the contact center agents both want the correct updated information to offer to customers. Contact center leadership wants both the contact center agent to be confident in the answer they give and the customer to be confident in the information they receive, regardless of the channel. We want to minimize frustration for the supervisor, quality analyst, and contact center agent. So how can this be done?

Information from these new technologies, like ChatGPT, is dynamic. It’s always changing. The only way to keep the information in compliance, mitigate risk, have a robust audit trail, and keep the information accurate—and in a way that can be managed by operations—is through a knowledge management system.

A knowledge management system is different than a knowledge base. It’s an operational knowledge solution that:

  • Mitigates risk by making sure that the information delivered to the customer is consistent. This will assist the company in defending itself against class action lawsuits.

  • Is compliant, accurate, and consistent, especially in highly regulated industries.

  • Has an audit trail. With automatic system documentation, there is no human error. This is extremely important to mitigate risk and stay in compliance.

  • Works operationally. When information is consistent and documented, handling quality score cards is easier and more streamlined. The agent, supervisor, and quality analyst have confidence in the information and answers. Coaching can be more acceptable to a contact center agent.

  • Leads to customer-facing agents finding the correct answer quickly with an operational knowledge management solution, which leads to a better experience at work.

  • Heightens customer confidence. No matter who the customer hears from in any channel, they will receive the right information every time.

Leaders at all levels want technologies that help make their organizations more productive, save labor dollars, and reduce headcount. Customer-facing employees and gig workers want to work with technology that is easy and efficient and helps minimize the stress they feel when trying to find the right answer. These frontline workers want to have confidence that the answer they are giving to a customer is correct. Customers just want the answers quickly and accurately.

When we have strategic discussions around new technologies, it’s important to look at possible operational and legal pitfalls that can hinder our success. We can save ourselves a lot of stress and wasted time and money if we ask the right questions before we chase the newest technologies.

Vicki Brackett is a contact center industry veteran, a long time CCNG member and regular contributor in member programs and events. Recognized as a subject-matter expert on virtual/work-at-home environments and leadership development. Vicki helps members in a variety of topic areas including innovative and progressive solutions that impact increasing higher CSATs, first call resolutions, new agent speed to competency and higher productivity…all while engaging team members and reversing high absenteeism and attrition.

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