How technology can help give people back their voice

Technology can benefit business is countless ways; from easing workload to operating 24 hours, seven days a week, to facilitating better decision-making through faster data analysis and smarter processes, and much more. It comes into its element however, when it is used to augment our individual capabilities, as people.  

Communication is at the heart of being. It helps to build relationships, express our needs, exchange information, and share our tales of lessons learned and fond memories. It helps us to connect. And we all need to do it. It is fundamental for business, and for pleasure.  

Richard Culberson

The elevated issue of communication in the modern world, however, is that we are bombarded with messages, emails, advertising, social media, and our voice can get lost, that element of good communication. Not just the speaking (or being spoken at), but also the listening, hearing, and understanding. And this is where technology, and particularly the latest advancements in AI, contrary to media hype can help give people back their voice.  

How can we communicate more successfully? 

AI is already present in all aspects of our life from Google Maps to Spotify suggestions, not to mention a core component of social media algorithms. Technology in this field has advanced massively, providing more and more ways and opportunities to communicate and the trajectory will only continue in one direction. 

In the main we are now harnessing it to supplement our capabilities. This is particularly evident in the customer service arena, in communication.  

The role of AI in gold-standard customer experience 

It helps you to know your customer better. It is worth mentioning here that the data you get out is only as good as the data you put in. If you feed Alexa garbage, then you will get garbage back. However, harness the power and you will give your people (and your business) superpowers. For example, AI driven NLP (Natural Language Processing) can help gather user data in real-time and analyze it. The information is there at a mere swipe of the computer screen, enabling you to stay on top of changes in behavior or requirements.  

It helps your communication efficiency. In this always-on world, where people want a choice in how they communicate, self-driving software and Chatbots can automate those repetitive tasks, particularly the questions that are always asked and easily answered. This frees up time for your people to focus on other more productive tasks. Yet it also still collects data for you to analyze and utilize as above. 

It helps you create a personalized experience. Not only can AI analyze, using the vast amounts of data gathered, it can learn and predict. So that you can provide them with the perfect solution before they even know that they need it.  

What is the most important element? People 

Communication is fundamental. AI-augmented communication is fundamental for the future. It can provide you with the power to understand faster and more accurately so that you can provide your customers with a gold-standard customer experience. It can help you to build better insights upon which you can base your decisions, allowing you to be proactive in your support, a seamless partner offering a personalized service. It can, in turn, support your client retention objectives, contribute to brand reputation, and impact the potential generation of new revenue streams. All win-win. 

This is exciting. However, technology is just one partner in the relationship. To realize the power of new advances, technology needs people to give it its voice. And people will be habitually using it to give them a voice to ever more improved conversations.   

By Richard Culberson

Richard Culberson is CEO of Moneypenny North America and VoiceNation. Moneypenny and VoiceNation are America’s best virtual receptionist & phone answering providers. For more than 20 years, VoiceNation has specialized in custom-scripted call answering, with bilingual receptionists available to take calls 24 hours a day. VoiceNation is part of Moneypenny, a leading 24/7 provider of personalized answering services, live chat, and customer contact solutions. Collectively, the Moneypenny Group employs over 1,200 people handling over 20 million calls and chats for thousands of businesses of all shapes and sizes – from sole traders right up to multinational corporations – across the UK and the US.