The call centre industry is on the brink of a major transformation. With the advent of new technologies like virtual assistants, artificial intelligence (AI) and self-service web chat, businesses are starting to explore new ways to interact with their customers.
This shift is being driven by the need to improve customer experience and reduce costs. Call centres are under immense pressure to deliver fast, efficient and personalised service – all while dealing with ever-increasing volumes of calls.
New technologies are emerging that can help call centres meet these challenges head-on. Virtual assistants, for example, can take on simple tasks like booking appointments or checking account balances, freeing up human agents to deal with more complex queries. AI can be used to automate routine tasks, like providing information about opening hours or directing customers to the right department. And self-service web chat can help reduce call volumes by allowing customers to resolve simple issues themselves.
In particular New Zealand is in a great spot to expand our digitisation with New Zealand coming in 8th place in the The top 20 countries for Digital Readiness. This is according to the latest results from the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) Networked Readiness Index.
New Zealand has scored well in the past on measures of digital infrastructure and connectivity, but this year’s report shows it has also improved its performance on a range of other indicators, including business and government use of ICTs, individual usage and skills.
The WEF said New Zealand was “well prepared” for what it called the fourth industrial revolution – a term it uses to describe the rapid changes being brought about by new technologies such as artificial intelligence and robotics.
“Against the backdrop of an increasingly complex global environment, New Zealand’s strong showing in this year’s edition is all the more remarkable,” said Margareta Drzeniek-Hanouz, head of competitiveness at WEF.
“It indicates that decision-makers have succeeded in positioning their country as a role model for others in terms of how best to prepare for and harness opportunities arising from disruptive technological change.”
New Zealanders have a reputation as digital “early adopters” with a reported 90% or more of Kiwis being “online” and yet, according to MBIE, only about 60% of Kiwi businesses have a website and a much smaller number have cloud services or dedicated apps. There is obviously untapped potential for Kiwis to get more done online.” The digitisation of the call centre industry is well underway – and it’s only going to accelerate in the years to come. Businesses that embrace these new technologies will be in a strong position to improve customer experience and drive down costs.
Written by Sam Rae