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Thought leadership

Some interesting research in this week’s newsletter claiming the UK is trailing behind Europe in customer service as brands race to adopt AI technologies to transform how they engage with customers.

The report reveals that just over half (54%) of UK senior decision makers state their business currently uses AI – in areas such as chatbots, virtual assistants, Natural Language Processing (NLP) and facial recognition – for customer service departments, compared to 97% in the Netherlands, 86% in France and 81% in Germany.

The Freshworks report goes on to say that AI investment reached a record $1bn (£803.9m) in the first six months of 2019 according to Tech Nation, making the UK the third biggest AI market in the world behind the US and China. However, this investment does not yet seem to be far-reaching for UK customer service.

The study suggests people do not want to take on responsibility for bringing AI in to overhaul current systems. Just one in four senior decision makers in the UK claim no one is driving AI deployment within their customer service department. Yet, C-Suite executives are leading the integration of AI in the vast majority of Dutch, French and German companies.

The findings also suggest a large gap between business and consumer perceptions of how good their customer service actually is. Eight in 10 of senior decision makers surveyed in the UK believe their customer service departments to be excellent, while only 9% of UK consumers have no frustrations when dealing with customer service agents. This issue will be looked at in detail at our upcoming 2020 Future of the Contact Centre Conference early next year.