Human Support in The World of Automation

Posted On: March 5, 2020


We are experiencing an acceleration of automation with a world full of gadgets and smart technology.  The combination of automation and intelligent machines is minimizing human effort in most spheres. We have built machines that can learn on their own by making sense out of big data, observing us and watching experiences in order to adapt as per to our convenience. With the repetitive tasks taken over by machines and automation, human support has never been given more importance than today.

While technology ensures efficiency and higher productivity, there’s still one ingredient missing that builds brands.



Automation & Emotional Intelligence

We have designed machines to help us from the very beginning. From covering great distances on foot to traveling by air. Sending letters across the land to receiving mails just in seconds. From using the gold and silver coins to the invention of plastic money. Managing paperwork in physical catalogs to uploading them on the cloud. From house help to AI virtual assistants; almost everything today has changed.

In a recent study, McKinsey estimates that close to half of all U.S. jobs may be automated in the next decade and Forrester says that 10% of U.S. jobs would be automated this year.

There is no doubt that technology can perform faster and more efficiently than humans. But the artistry in the activity is what automation lacks. In other words, the uniquely human ability to cater to the needs of the individual keeps us above all. Machines can only copy the works of great artists, writers, sculptors, painters, etc. but cannot produce or create them.

“People will always surpass machines because people possess wisdom.” – Jack Ma

Emotional Intelligence is popularly known as emotional quotient. Humans have the ability to understand, use and manage their own emotions, which makes them different from other species on this planet. Only humans can use it in positive ways to communicate effectively, empathize with others, overcome challenges and defuse conflict. Emotional intelligence helps to build stronger relationships.


Emotional Intelligence in the Customer Experience Industry

The emotional quotient (EQ) is imperative in customer experience. The ability to understand with sense and empathize with the problem is the USP of human support that makes delightful experiences. The capability to walk an extra mile to satisfy the customer and make subtle adjustments is what builds long term customer relations.  Though chatbots are more efficient, at times they become the reason for frustration in complex issues. Smart customer service always blends automation with the human touch.

Customers need a human voice in complex cases, to guide them to the appropriate resolution. Even if the machines and self-service softwares are efficient, a human voice ensures security. Customers feel important in every way, thus enhancing customer loyalty and lifetime value.


The Need For A Human Touch

The latest technologies automate conversations with customers by detecting their needs and concerns over channels like chat, or even emails. But the real value of automation is realized when automated AI assistants compliment the jobs of support agents to improve a customer’s experience with a brand. A couple of examples ahead:


The banking system has evolved technologically to provide better customer experience.  Banks have introduced smart knowledge bases to provide  self service and omnichannel customer service. In the newer years of the 21st Century, maximum financial interactions centered on traditional bank branches. But with the evolution of technology and automation in almost 15 years, over 90% of banking related interactions have moved online.

However, as per this research, humans in-branch channels have still been the most popular communication channel amongst customers researching or applying to buy a new financial product.

This study goes on to imply that when inquired about their current banking relationships, only 42% felt cared for as individuals, not simply as a customer. Therefore, when a business goes about creating solutions without factoring in the security and emotional needs of its clients, they lose out on maintaining long-term companionships with their customer bases.


Likewise medicine, there are efficient machines, mobile applications equipped with chat bots are helping patients to seek help by themselves. In addition, the machine or mobile applications can absolutely determine an appropriate plan. However, in case of an emergency or even confusion, customer support works differently. A virtual assistant can answer the daily monotonous queries that come its way through digital channels, but how does automation work when a question is too complex or when a customer is too upset to deal with a bot?

While intelligent softwares can make sense of scores of data more efficiently than a human, a reassuring voice and the ability to empathize goes a long way in the Healthcare Industry.


Human Support + Automation = Greater CX

These examples only imply the fact that it is the collaboration between humans and automation that is going to make work more efficient.

Automation is not about replacing people or taking over their jobs. It is about making them smarter and more effective at their jobs.

People doing knowledge-based work have always been more productive given they have the support of a computer and information. Similarly, customer support is no exception. With the rise of automation and intelligent tech taking over, agents and service providers can let bots and virtual agents take care of the drudge work, while they lend an empathetic ear, and a reassuring voice to be the best solution providers to customers that need them.

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