How Chatbots Will Automate Call Centers
Articles,  Blog

How Chatbots Will Automate Call Centers


Around the world, businesses field hundreds of billions of requests from us each year. We want our flights changed, a purchase refunded, a claim reviewed. That takes the labor of millions of agents who tend to our every need. But soon, automation will
take over much of that, and it starts with the painstaking
work of this 23-year-old. My name is Laura Morales,
and I’m a chatbot designer. You probably know the Dominican Republic for its beaches. But further west in the country’s
capital of Santo Domingo, there’s a bustling hub of call centers for American businesses. Laura works for one of them,
at a company called OutPLEX. After you. Some of OutPLEX’s inquiries are handled by traditional
call center agents over the phone. Others are handled by
contact center agents over live written chat. Last year, the company
introduced a third kind of agent. A bot. Laura oversees bots for
three U.S.-based clients. And these bots greet customers looking for assistance online. The bots resolve simple
queries on their own, and the more complicated questions get escalated to a human representative. Me, as an agent, I used to
take three conversations, or just one call at the time. With bots, you don’t have that limitation. Alexa, will I need an umbrella tomorrow? It might rain tomorrow. There’s a 54% chance. Bots today are everywhere. And so the people who design their speech are in high demand. The job is kinda like writing
a very dry screenplay, with a choose your own adventure element for the many ways customers will respond. The hard part comes
once the bot goes live. Can you go to the metrics hub over there? Often, its pre-scripted conversations don’t work out the way Laura
and her team hope they would, so they’re constantly tinkering. The way to start a day with the bots. I need to check how the bots
did on the previous day. So, I go into analytics, and my favorite one is this. It’s the unmatched phrases. These are the moments
when the bot didn’t know what the customer wanted. Exactly. And I can also see how
many clients or visitors clicked on the first
button or the second button on the main menu. So, if my visitors are not
interacting with my menus, that means that maybe
something’s not right. So, it’s interesting ’cause
you used to be coaching the human agents, and now
you’re coaching a robot. Is that easier or harder? It’s easier. You don’t have to worry about
hurting a bot’s feelings. You’re not emotional about it. You’re just doing what you need to do for getting the results you want. Laura grew up hearing
all about the industry. Laura started out as an entry-level agent when she was 17, and worked her way up. Last year, she was chosen
to manage her company’s first interactive chatbot. And today makes about $8 an hour, which is four times what she earned when she first became an agent. The transition to work on chatbots took about three months to learn
various aspects of the job, including training on special software that doesn’t require her to code. Laura immediately saw the benefits. A bot is never late. A bot doesn’t get sick or pregnant. Those are specific human
situations that you can’t fight. Automation is able to take that out. But her mom had some hesitations. For now, the introduction of the bots hasn’t led to any layoffs. Because they’ve helped
OutPLEX win more business, the company has actually
hired more human agents to handle the inquiries that
get escalated from the bots. But as the technology gets better, it’s hard not to worry about
how this is all gonna play out. And that was a conversation that required some strong Dominican rum. Eventually, surely we will need fewer human call center
agents than we do now. Automation is a reality. And the skill set that you will need to work in this industry, it’s going to be different
from the regular agents you have today. I do believe it will get more technical. It will not be dealing
with a customer anymore. It will be monitoring the software. And if you don’t adapt, you
will need to do something else. Is there a small part
of you that feels guilty for automating away the job that gave you your start in your career and is the job of a lot of
your colleagues right now. Not at all. Like, zero guilt. Zero guilt? Yeah. Zero hesitation? It’s happening already. You might as well be a part of it. Thank God I’m part of it. Whether you’re a grocer, doctor, factory worker, or journalist, all of our jobs will soon
be reshaped by automation. Some will benefit from the
new work that will emerge, and others will watch their jobs disappear with no clear path to another livelihood. Managing this transition will
be the defining challenge for us in the decades ahead. And we need to be ready for it.

73 Comments

  • Carla Jenkins

    7:30 They'll get rid of Laura Morales too. There are already smart data centers and call centers that are virtual machines.

  • 1Energine1

    There are so many thinking errors here. Primarily the young lady "training" the bots (in this case these are very old bots not using machine learning or AI which is why they need a "trainer"). Her job has already been automated.
    The company she works for just hasn't invested in it. "0 guilt" oh the irony!

  • John La Marca

    BULLSHIT!! BULLSHIT!! BULLSHIT!! These bots are designed for THE RICH people PERIOD!!! The road down the path of technology is the road to PERMANENT inescapable [email protected]!!!!! YOU STUPID MUTHER FUCKERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Justin Stein

    "Adapt or die" will always be an applicable phrase, so learning to create / teach / support technology is one way to remain employed

  • Divine Life Bliss

    The only downside is millions of people will be unemployed in countries like India. Where working in Call Centers is a big thing. But big corporations do not care.

  • houman foroughian

    When we gonna start to understand that we are replacing human brains?! We are making Humans obsolete!!! This is not automation, in that process, we replaced human's Muscle power with machines, there is no adaptation for a replaced brain! If right now, you can't find a way to imagine a place for human workforce, at least we Must oppose this take over for short term profits of these leaches who feel no guilt and are so happy and promoted to 8 dollar income, this is the birth of SkyNet!!!

  • Hybrid InfoDesk

    S.Korea, Germany and France said hell no too antagonizing Iran in the Persian Gulf.

    Hezbollah and China has moved into back Iran up. Aneraeli, the synagogue of satan and UK are the only nutcases with a deathwish.

    Synagogue of satan wants too remove 458 verses out out of the bible that they are calling antisemitic. Plus, replace the new testament with that piece of empty filth, the talmud. The actual Israelites dont have a problem with the scriptures stating the truth about their transgressions. It is motivating us to do better be better. This is an excuse for them to try and flood the world with Babylonian satanism. Too late just 5 more days of their lies before maximum exposure starts happening.

  • first Impression

    Soon, AI will replace doctors, lawyers, engineers. Even computer programmers. Late show hosts. Actors. Singers. You name it.

  • Christos5120

    In human history always someone would create the means for eliminating OTHER people for their own benefit..
    Now people create the means that will lead to their own demise.
    And they will eventually, most of them, get what they deserve. Obsolescence from the human race.

  • Simple Sevens

    yea this is called an IVR. this has been going on for many years. the fact that AI will only be able to handle simple request. IVR now is so irritating. maybe in the next 50 years this may be a thing but not now. oh yea…where are our flying cars again?

  • Simple Sevens

    its funny though how much we rely on robots for a lot of things. is this trend going to continue…yea probably. are we trying to replace ourselves with everything artificial? seems so

  • The Brad Marks Channel

    Why does it take a minute and a half to say the first three sentences ?. You. Don't. Have. To. Space. Out. Your. Sentences. So. Much.

  • Speed Brake2018

    I chose to do business with real people. I avoid robots because they cannot solve majority of problems, at this point in time and a human mind can be creative in resolution channels. My bank, my insurance, my consumer goods, contractors, etc. are person to person. My choice, and from what I gather, my associates and social circles are similar. Have a cancelled or delayed flight lately at JFK or ORD? Bots are so frustrating at this time. On a macro economic level, so many automated jobs, no one will be employed. Revolution ensues, historically violent and ends with destruction and loss of the entire economy. World history repeats. People need jobs. It is necessary for long term success of the economy. Also working populations have smaller family size.

  • Tomas Ingarang

    Bat for you what do you honestly prefer for customer support? Chatting with Bots or Talking to Humans for Support?

  • Ajit Pawar

    If that bot doesn't have any ML or AI powered "learning" aspect to it, then it is definitely NOT the future of call centers. I am shocked that Bloomberg thinks this form of manually designed interactions & scripted responses is the future. This has been around forever.

  • Keenan Smith

    She could be making sooo much more with this skill if she worked for herself as a business owner. Facebook chabot agencies make 10x what she makes and if she was smart she will start today.

  • M M

    Nice politically correct piece. A latino woman Chatbot Designer sounds like she's writing code/designing software but she's glorified data $7/hour response inputer. Then she talks about it like she's some kind of automation guru. Can we replace journalists who put this type of crap together with robots please.

  • bobcato

    Why would Laura feel guilty???? It's like, she's designing a part of a new product called an Automobile, should she feel guilty? NO. It's progress, moving it forward.

  • William Ng

    one of a way of how automation kills human… don't the designer realise she basically cannibalism human mankind? 🤔🤔

  • Oli Athlete

    That’s the kind of attitude that destroys the world. I don’t think she is smart enough to understand her part in this game. Next she will be laid off and no one will hesitate.

  • Charles Clayton

    I'm afraid that Laura's work has almost nothing to do with the future of chatbots. This is very base level technology…

  • Satoru Yamakawa

    This 23-year-old bitch does not care about what becomes of others due to what she's doing now. Just typical behavour among the rich

  • Rather-B-Diving

    Umm, let's pause on assuming automation is a bad thing for humans and rewind to 5:58 the part where they said more humans have been hired at this call center becasue the chatbots increased business volume. This also increases the total tax receipts to fund government services, particularly education in skilled labor which means a more diversified workforce, leaving enough profits on the table for the decreasing number of fruit vendors. Not embracing the economic growth that technology ushers in means the growing population will have to further subdivide the static economic output and become even more poor automatically . Academics and journalism are supposed to resolve the sentimentality that comes from being uninformed.

  • HackingDutchman

    I've never had a satisfying answer from a chatbot. The ones I encountered only copy pasted info from the FAQ section.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *