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Curiosity is part of our DNA, this drives us to continuously pursue knowledge and innovation to generate long-term value for our clients. One area that sparks our interest is the field of artificial intelligence and its endless potential to upscale businesses. We were eager to learn more about leveraging AI from our partners, so we hosted a webinar about deploying AI and automation in customer support. CX legends Laura McDonald, Director of Customer Happiness at UrbanStems, and Chad Wegrecki Product Support Manager at Cratejoy, shared their experiences. Here are our key takeaways:

Automation vs AI

The concepts of automation and AI are frequently misrepresented. Chad Wegrecki pointed out that automation is a proactive system that can help users find a solution without having to ask for assistance. AI, on the other hand, is not designed to provide an answer but serves as a guiding tool for customers.

“We see that difference as automation, as anything that is a proactive system that can handle a user’s intent either before they know they have it or once they’ve directly asked for assistance,” explained Chad. “AI is not providing the solution.”

On that same topic, Laura McDonald said that automation simplifies processes, whereas AI handles tasks that require cognitive functions.

Deploying Automation & AI Webinar | Lessons Learned from CX Leaders

Leveraging Talent with AI

When we talk about the benefits AI can bring to businesses, it is important to consider the human factor. Our CX experts unpacked this sensitive topic in the webinar, stressing the importance of balancing human interaction and technology to maintain their customers’ trust.

Implementing AI and automation tools can be challenging. Both panelists spoke about their journey of gradually introducing these tools to their teams and clients. As Chad describes: “Our goal was not to replace the human touch, but instead to improve the experience that is augmenting it and getting them to that human in a more effective way.

The Cratejoy team identified opportunities where they could leverage AI tools to simplify database and documentation processes while enhancing their customer experience through interactions with real people.

UrbanStems’ approach to leveraging talent with AI was to develop their incredible team while protecting and providing an empathetic customer experience for their clients.

“We put a handful of our Boldr agents into senior positions to help us manage some of these platforms. And so we’re not viewing it as reducing our workforce or potentially eliminating jobs. We’re viewing this as an opportunity to take already talented agents and upskill them to help them manage these AI bots because AI cannot go unchecked”.

Laura highlighted the importance of building trust with their customers and being transparent about how and when AI is supporting their experience, while giving them a way to reach an agent traditionally, to maintain their unique touch.


Growing and Learning 

Aside from enhancing customer experience, AI tools and automation can help with cost reduction and efficiency. By minimizing errors and guiding customers to solutions faster, UrbanStems and Cratejoy were able to improve their engagement with customers.

Chad indicated that four years ago Cratejoy’s deflection rate was 22% and now, having implemented AI, it is roughly 85%. ”We’re seeing significant improvement in customers’ understanding of how to navigate our platform and their ability to find the right solution the first time without human interaction. […] We’ve had a significant decrease in cost and ability to scale. We’ve cut our support expenses from an agent solutions perspective by over $500,000 in the last two years.”

According to Laura, UrbanStems enjoyed similar successes. “We brought on a platform called Convey by Project 44, which uses AI to take a look at the delivery scans and help us predict whether or not this package will make it there on time before FedEx ever tells us that there’s a potential for a delivery delay. And this allows us to make alternate plans. […] Bringing this on board provided us an 85% cost savings and a 63% reduction in ‘Wismo’ outreach.”


A sneak peek into the future of CX and AI 

According to our panelists, the future looks promising. Both were able to identify spaces to pay attention to in the near future: AI developments in data analysis and Quality Assurance (QA).

“The area that I have seen the most growth and most promise coming up here in the near future is really the data analysis side,” said Chad.

Laura, on the other hand, is keen to see how simplifying QA will impact CX and agent performance. “In the immediate future, I think the biggest impact that I see for CX is simplifying QA. QA takes a ton of time for humans to do and AI can do it in a fraction of the time.”

We are excited about new technological advances in the sphere of CX and AI and support our partners’ growth with solutions that fit their needs while scaling their businesses. For those who want to know more about how AI can be applied to improve your CX support services, then please reach out to us or watch the webinar recording here.


Aitana Rangel Garibay is Boldr’s creative writer and she is passionate about writing purpose-driven stories.