Salesforce moves to reinvent customer service experiences with generative AI

Salesforce moves to reinvent customer service experiences with generative AI

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Salesforce Inc. said today it’s adding yet another artificial intelligence capability to its arsenal with the launch of a new application called Service Intelligence within its Service Cloud, its flagship customer relationship management platform for customer service and support.

The new offering is powered by Salesforce’s hyperscale data engine, Data Cloud. The company said it gives service agents and managers all of the information they need to streamline customer service at their fingertips, meaning they no longer will need to toggle through multiple screens and dashboards to find what they need.

According to Salesforce, Service Intelligence will enable customer service professionals to make more informed decisions, faster than before, enhancing customer satisfaction to give themselves a competitive edge over their competitors.

Service Intelligence is built on the concept of customizable dashboards that provide an at-a-glance view of essential metrics such as customer satisfaction and individuals’ or teams’ workloads. Managers can use these to create a quick overview of their teams and the issues they’re working on and react quickly to any challenges. For instance, it can help them determine when a particular team or agent needs more support during busy times, the company said.

Perhaps the most notable feature of Service Cloud is the Einstein Conversation Mining capability, which uses AI to analyze customer conversations to help service managers quickly identify trends and the most pressing customer issues. As an example, Salesforce said, service leaders will be able to determine if a larger-than-usual number of customers are calling with questions regarding a product’s return policy. Salesforce’s AI customer service bots can then be trained to recognize whenever a customer contacts them about this issue, and direct them to a self-help article that answers their questions quickly.

Meanwhile, users have the ability to quickly jump from the Service Intelligence dashboard to a data exploration visualization in Tableau Software while retaining the same data context. These visualizations can also be embedded directly into Service Intelligence, making it easier to share the most important insights users surface.

Those features in Service Intelligence are available now, but the company has lots of additional planned updates down the road. For instance, with the availability of Einstein Copilot in Service Intelligence next year, users will be able to ask Einstein, a generative AI assistant, questions about their dashboards and the metrics and trends they discover in a conversational way. Also coming next year, Einstein Studio will help users to quickly surface additional insights, such as the propensity for a customer to escalate by elevating a complaint, as well as predictions regarding the resolution times of specific issues.

Finally, there’s a new feature called Customer Effort Score coming next year that will provide a holistic view of how difficult the service experience has been for each customer. Along with this, it will offer recommendations on what agents can do to improve each customers’ satisfaction, for instance by offering a discount whenever the experience has been particularly difficult.

Valoir analyst Rebecca Wetterman said customer service industry success is generally determined by how easy and efficient customer interactions are made. Customers want to be able to resolve their issues quickly and without any stress, and AI can help to achieve this, she said.

“Salesforce’s Service Intelligence solution empowers service providers to better understand agent performance, foresee a customer’s propensity to escalate, and identify opportunities for automation and improved technology management,” Wetterman explained. “[These are all] factors that drive a more positive customer and agent experience.”

Today’s updates are the latest in what has become an almost constant stream of new AI features introduced by Salesforce this year. The company has invested billions of dollars in research and development over the past several years, with much of that effort focused on AI.

Earlier this year it rolled out new generative AI capabilities in its Sales Cloud and Service Cloud applications, which came after similar updates to Marketing Cloud and Commerce Cloud. In September it announced the coming launch of its Einstein Copilot, which will be integrated with every Salesforce product. And last month it introduced generative AI capabilities into Anypoint Code Builder, an integration platform from its MuleSoft subsidiary.

Salesforce’s AI push has also seen it collaborate with the likes of IBM Corp., with the focus there being to help customers adopt its generative AI tools faster and benefit from them more effectively.

Alice Steinglass, executive vice president and general manager of platform at Salesforce, recently stopped by SiliconANGLE Media’s mobile livestreaming studio theCUBE during the Supercloud 4 event to discuss the goals of the company’s generative AI revolution. Among other things, Salesforce is determined to use generative AI to help customers transform their workloads and processes in areas such as sales, marketing, customer service, finance and more.

Image: Freepik

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