If you’re looking to scale your call center’s outbound operation, artificial intelligence (AI) can help in a big way. It’s especially helpful for call centers in industries like health insurance.
The insurance vertical, for example, often scales outreach around open enrollment each year. As a high-pressure time of the year, call centers need to operate efficiently and at an even higher scale when it’s open enrollment.
AI shoulders a portion of the outbound workflow to help your team operate at peak efficiency — even during high-stakes times of your business.
But what does AI actually look like for your call center? Does it mean agents will be replaced by robots?
Not at all. Here’s a breakdown of what AI for outbound call centers looks like and how it helps your business.
What does AI look like for call centers?
Artificial intelligence exists applied across a multitude of mediums in recent years, such as:
- Voice search on your phone (“Hey, Siri!”) or smart speakers
- Chat bots to provide customer support
- Personalized recommendations via machine learning (Netflix recommendations)
For your call center, AI is most helpful as a machine agent that can hold personalized voice conversations. This is called conversational AI. It uses voice recognition software to read vocal queues and tailor responses based on the answers. Look for conversational AI with:
- A real human voice used in its recordings
- Natural language programming
- Machine learning
- Advanced speech recognition
- Streamlined recording of answers
Interested in learning more about AI for your call center? Check out our Conversational AI Agent. Or call (844) 447-2929 to hear our Conversational AI dialer.
How to use conversational AI at your call center
Conversational AI boosts your call center’s efficiency, whether you’re selling the actual offers or live transfers. This is primarily because agents no longer need to pre-qualify leads themselves. A conversational AI agent asks the initial questions and only transfers qualified leads to human agents.
AI also provides your business an opportunity to get an edge on the competition. Forty-nine percent of organizations are exploring machine learning, while only 15% of organizations claim to be sophisticated users.
Here are four ways to use conversational AI for the max benefit:
1. Filter out unqualified leads
Conversational AI takes pre-qualification off your agents’ plate. It asks your initial questions and records and updates the lead data based on the answers it receives. From there, it only transfers qualified leads to live agents.
It also immediately recognizes leads with incorrect phone numbers or missing information, so agents don’t need to spend time verifying lead accuracy.
As a result, your agents are more productive, happier, and more likely to convert their calls.
2. Cut the first 60-90 seconds of agents’ calls
Picture your agents spending their time selling by having meaningful conversations. Your call center’s conversion rate and success would increase significantly.
But all too often, agents spend their first minute of each call on qualifying questions. That time adds up quickly — we all know how many calls your agents aim to make each day, each week, and each quarter. Over time, shaving a minute off each call could transform the output of your entire sales team.
AI can have a conversation that asks the right questions for an agent. Then, on pass off, the agent can pick up where the AI left off. This is especially true when AI uses recordings of a real human voice instead of computer-generated sounds. Conversations sound natural and friendly, rather than robotic. As a result, being transferred to a live agent feels seamless.
3. Reduce headcount and training costs
A study by The Bridge Group revealed that 46% of managers identified productivity as one of their top challenges. Your software and training are two key ways to help improve agent productivity.
With your software’s AI, your agents can focus on converting qualified leads. They don’t need to spend precious time dialing, pre-qualifying, or having ineffective conversations.
As a result, you can hire fewer, more effective agents while generating more conversions. Each agent can work at top productivity. And your business can likely reduce payroll costs.
You can also save on training costs. With agents less focused on pre-qualifying leads, training on that element is reduced. Check out our guide to training outbound call center agents here.
4. Filter and route inbound calls to agents via AI
Call centers have less control over inbound calls. It’s hard to determine how qualified an inbound call is before it reaches an agent.
Conversational AI can identify inbound calls and assess if the caller is an existing lead. It can then route the caller to the right place. For instance, the AI may answer the call and handle initial questioning if an inbound caller is reaching out for the first time. But the AI may route the to an agent if the caller is also an existing qualified lead in your system.
In doing so, your agents aren’t distracted or dropping everything for an inbound call that may — or may not — turn into a sale.
Want to get started with AI for your call center? Check out our Conversational AI Agent. Or call (844) 447-2929 to hear our Conversational AI dialer.