How AI Automation unlocks value from your other systems

3 Aug 2023

4.5 min read

When looking to integrate any technology, it’s worth considering the auxiliary benefits that it can bring to your organisation. Outside of the stated goals for any solution, there are likely to be benefits that translate to other functions in the business. AI-powered customer service automation is no exception. As well as improving first response time for customer service and improving ticket resolution time, there are a range of benefits that these solutions can provide. Let’s examine a few of them. 

Identifying supply chain issues

If you suffer from a supply chain issues – a particular factory creates a product defect, a supplier produces imperfect materials, or a carrier has repeated issues with delivery – it can be hard to detect it with human agents. You have to rely on agents using the correct wrap codes, then have someone review the data and detect when the number of issues suddenly spike. 

With AI, this process can be automated and an alert can be set up to trigger an investigation. Using intent detection, AI platform can parse the meaning in what customers are asking and then aggregate the data. With that data, you can then set up alerts when the volume of certain ticket types reaches a threshold and trigger an investigation or escalation.

Take WISMO (Where is My Order) queries – if you were to see a sudden spike in customers asking where their packages were, you could dig into the data and see what’s causing the issue. Perhaps it’s an unidentified IT issue at a warehouse, or a problem with one of your carriers. This allows you to drill in and find the issue and solve the root problem. 

Getting refunds from carriers automatically

When an order is not delivered because of a carrier issue it’s particularly frustrating. Firstly because you’re having to deal with a customer issue that’s not your fault, but secondly because you have to raise the issue with the carrier in order to get the refund for the failed delivery. For an agent to do this takes time away from helping customers, but yet it’s essential for your business to recoup costs. 

With AI this process can be automated. It requires integrating with your carriers, but when you have that set up, you can create a workflow that automatically raises the issue with the carrier.

Porto’s Bakery does this with DigitalGenius – as they sell perishable goods it’s essential that delivery is on time, which means a lot of next-day delivery services. When those delivery slots get missed, Porto’s have to send a replacement order or issue a refund to the customer. As a result it’s essential they recoup as many costs as possible. Using automation, they are able to automatically recoup $7,000 a month from carriers. 

Cancelling or amending orders before they are shipped

A request to cancel or amend an order is another necessary pain that retailers have to deal with. If the order has not been processed the pain is minimal, but if it has shipped then retailers have to deal with returned items, replacement orders and even refunds. With modern commitment to processing orders as quickly as possible, the chances of catching the order gets lower and lower. It depends on a customer service agent picking up the request and getting it to the warehouse in time.

However this is another process that can be automated. waterdrop used an integration to Netsuite in order to process cancellation orders and amends. If customers make the request before the order has been processed, the request gets transmitted automatically and the order can be stopped in its tracks. 

Ultimately this process improvement means that it prevents further tickets being created with returns, refunds and replacements. But it can also remove an unnecessary order from the shipping backlog, making the process smoother for other customers, and saving on shipping costs. 

Improving processes in CRMs and other platforms

For any online retailer, managing multiple systems for different purposes adds layers of complexity to simple tasks. During the course of any conversation with a customer, agents may have to look at a wide number of platforms. This may include a helpdesk, a CRM, a CDP, a loyalty platform, as well as carrier systems. 

By integrating these systems to an AI automation platform that can pull data from all these data sources, ecommerce teams can start to improve processes. For example, being able to pass relevant order information to a carrier system can allow the automatic generation of return labels for customers. 

There are few limitations to what can be done if the integrations are right. waterdrop also uses automated processes to apply loyalty points to customers’ accounts when certain conditions are met, meaning that agents and in-store staff don’t have to spend time manually amending loyalty accounts. 

Successful use of AI can transform business processes

When AI is used at its best, it is about removing the tedious tasks from people, allowing them to focus on areas where they can make a real difference. For customer service agents, that can mean deflecting repetitive tickets allowing them to concentrate on higher value customer interactions. For the wider business this can mean detecting patterns in data that suggest there is a problem, as well as improving business processes that can save the business time and money.

To discuss how AI can help you bring the most out of your systems book a meeting with our team today.