Human interaction preferable to bots: Pegasystems


Thursday, 09 May, 2019


Human interaction preferable to bots: Pegasystems

Companies need to improve intelligent automation if they wish to improve customer experience, according to a new survey from Pegasystems.

The survey of 1020 Australians found that 73% prefer to interact with humans, rather than bots, for customer service.

This would seem to imply that AI and automated chatbots are not meeting the service levels customers receive from live representatives. The data highlights the need for improved understanding of customer needs and better use of technologies by brands that will deliver positive customer outcomes.

According to the research, Australians think a human touch is still one of the most critical aspects of brand communication. Human customer service was selected by 29% of respondents — and tied for first — as the most important element of personalised customer experience. Australians prefer to make complaints (63%), get mortgages (54%) and buy insurance (48%) from people rather than automated services. In fact, consumers only seem comfortable using automation for simple tasks such as ordering take-away food or booking a taxi — the two least popular transactions with humans at 35% and 26% respectively.

At the same time, speed is of the essence. Getting a fast response tied for first (29%) as the most critical aspect of personalised customer experience. Furthering this point, people are most annoyed by waiting a long time to speak to customer service reps and repeating themselves to multiple service reps at 35% and 23% respectively.

Email is the top communications tool for brands, ranked as the top channel by 77% of consumers, while 11% don’t want any marketing at all on any channel.

Interestingly, despite the recent issues with the Royal Banking Commission, banks still rank as the most trusted organisations to safeguard personal information — with 62% trusting them with their data, followed closely by government (57%). The next tier of industries trailed much further behind, including insurers (33%), online communications providers (31%) and telco providers (27%).

“With the recent events of bad customer experience still fresh in Australian consumers’ minds, brands need to demonstrate the true power of automation to improve the customer journey,” said Luke McCormack, Vice President, Managing Director APAC, Pegasystems.

“We’re working with organisations across key sectors to intelligently manage their customer interactions in real time across every single touchpoint, to drive valuable connections and benefit consumer relationships. The result is a superior customer experience, every time, no matter where you are on the customer journey or with what channel you happen to engage.”

The survey was conducted online via YouGov global public opinion. Pega sampled 1020 adult consumers between 18–22 October 2018. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all Australian adults (aged 18+).

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/Sergey

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