When you talk about automation for the customer service and support center, it can sound like you are going to get rid of all the people and run the entire thing on self service IVR and web portals. But that isn’t what we really mean.
Automation for customer service has more to do with how tickets are handled once they are in the system and how email or online ticket submission is performed. It isn’t the agents that need to be automated, it is the process the tickets and other electronic interaction follows.
It may be more clear to talk about Email Support Management and Business Rules Automation.
If you have a lot of customers who prefer to interact with your company using email, it can get overwhelming in a hurry if there is nobody looking after the company mailbox. It would be easy to miss something. But email support management automates some of the process. The automation software is set up to monitor the subject lines and content of incoming emails and matching them up to articles in the knowledgebase or creating and assigning a ticket out of specific emails. The customer gets a response with helpful information and an acknowledgement of complaint receipt.
This same type of automated reply can be used in the self service center by monitoring an incoming submission, returning possible resolutions, and requesting if the ticket still needs to be created? If the customer’s problem was resolved, the ticket is automatically closed as having been resolved by an existing solution.
Other business rules automation takes place during the ticket handling process. The system is set to perform certain tasks or processes depending on predetermined parameters.
For instance, a rule is set to escalate any ticket that ages over 3 days. Or a rule is created to move the ticket through multiple assignees in a particular order. A rule can manage the generation and email distribution of specific reports when certain thresholds are met. A single ticket trigger multiple actions based on business rules put into the system.
When these steps are taken care of by the customer support software, it can decrease ticket submission, decrease missed deadlines, and decrease frustration for both customer and company.
You have too many other things to think about to spend time worrying about simple administrative work.