Of the Fortune 500 companies that have used generative artificial intelligence (AI) in their customer service departments, productivity has improved considerably.
- A recent survey from Stanford and MIT found that customer-service departments using AI had increased productivity.
- The study revealed what may be the first empirical evidence that generative AI can be beneficial in the workplace, Axios reports.
- Researchers provided 5,000 customer-service agents at Fortune 500 companies with AI software. The AI monitored customer correspondence and provided representatives with suggestions for responses and links to potentially helpful information.
Why it’s news
While AI has made a splash in the tech world in the last year, business leaders have still been evaluating how best to use the new technology in the workplace. This study may be the beginning of AI’s integration into the general workforce.
AI gave customer-service representatives suggestions that could prevent customers from becoming agitated while giving the workers links to information that could help them troubleshoot issues with customers. The representatives could ignore AI suggestions if they determined the AI was unhelpful in that scenario.
Researchers found the AI chatbot led to a 14% increase in the number of successful customer-service chats an agent could respond to per hour. Representatives had more time to handle individual chats and spoke to more customers per hour. There was a slight increase in successful resolutions, Axios reports.
Customer-service centers also saw a decrease in turnover after implementing AI. New workers had the least amount of turnover. For more experienced customer service workers, there was only a slight improvement in turnover.
Experienced workers did not benefit as much from the AI as new workers. For workers who have been in the customer-service industry for some time, the AI’s suggestions were already known methods to calm a customer. The AI’s suggestions were most helpful for new workers who had not learned how best to interact with customers.
In addition to allowing more workers to talk to more customers per hour, the AI could also cut down on training experienced workers have to pass on to new employees.