Chris Lamberton, CEO of TrustPortal, discusses how hyperautomation technology is helping drive growth in the global telecoms market
Every telcoms company wants to deliver transformed digital services that lead to enhanced digital experiences for their customers. But most telcos, whatever stage they’re at on their digital transformation journey, are struggling to operate in this ‘digital experience economy’.
They’re struggling with a huge growth in mobile traffic and bandwidth requirements, fuelled by the home working surge, and increasing customer demands for always-on, personalised, high-quality, digital services — across any channel.
The ability of most telecoms providers to digitally transform end-to-end services is constrained by legacy IT environments, manual, paper-heavy processes, broken digital journeys, and the complexity and cost of fully digitising end-to-end services.
This is especially true within contact centre environments. Agents must navigate across multiple systems — often 10 or more, so they struggle to bring everything together and deliver positive brand experiences. This also leads to high error rates, stress, costly inefficiencies and decreasing levels of productivity. And don’t forget, every employee requires training and experience to properly serve customers.
Industry statistics reveal ever-longer call times, slower speed to answer, more abandoned revenue generating calls and missed opportunities to upsell. And this is being magnified for telcos that are experiencing a huge increase in contact volumes resulting from Covid-related events. The results are poor quality services that generate high staff and customer churn rates.
Telcos are therefore seeking innovative ways of designing and rapidly delivering the frictionless, personalised and simplified digital service interactions and experiences that both employees and customers deserve. It means making each interaction intelligent, intuitive, contextual and consistent across all employee and customer touchpoints — from the front-office to the back-office — and across every channel.
Traditional approaches to innovating in these complex environments often include replacing core systems or creating new, bespoke digital services, but are hampered by the complexity, cost, time and staff investment needed. So how can telcos start delivering this faster, easier, with less resources – and avoid missing out on huge opportunities?
The hyperautomation catalyst
This is where a new capability comes in — advanced hyperautomation that uniquely enables the intelligent real-time orchestration and augmentation of people, multiple vendor robots, digital technologies and AI, so they work together as unified, hyper-productive, super resources, at enterprise-scale.
It’s a hyperautomated way of working where each step within any end-to-end work process, of any complexity and business function, is precisely performed by the most appropriate combination of robotic and human workers: augmented by tools such as digital and AI — all within seconds.
These capabilties are uniquely delivered to employees and customers via robot-guided, real-time dialogues and interactions, across every channel including IVR; telephony; email; SMS; websites; mobile apps; chatbots and more. The result is much simpler, more valuable, digital interactions and next best interactions that provide transformed services and experiences.
For example, in a telco’s call centre, a customer call via IVR immediately activates and coordinates swarms of robots to instantly gather information from multiple legacy, modern systems and APIs — even before the call being routed to an agent. Robots dynamically generate agent-friendly interfaces from this information that’s dynamically adapted for the specific customer’s needs.
So, the right information is instantly provided to agents, in the right UI, at the right time, given the task at hand. This makes each step the “next simplest interaction” for agents, so it reduces workloads and increases productivity, leading to lower call times. Contextual “Agent Assist” AI also helps agents to swiftly solve any issue.
Customers can also experience transformed services by self-serving themselves through any digital channel — or even switch across multi-channels, guided by the same robots servicing agents. So, customers no longer call in and hold for ages. They can now do everything themselves online, starting and checking the progress of their requests, 24/7.
What a hyperautomated telco looks like
Telefónica Spain is using hyperautomation capabilities that enable employees to better serve customers. Telefónica’s contact centre agents must handle up to 200,000 calls per day, and previously, agents had to be trained on, and work with, 10-15 different systems. During lockdown, Telefónica also faced a 50 per cent growth in mobile traffic, while working from home.
Telefónica’s 12,000 agents are using a platform, powered by hyperautomation, as a single, easy to use interface, supporting over 90 per cent of all calls through transformed, end-to-end services, across multiple channels — with unmatched ease, speed, integrity, and scale. So instead of the agent spending minutes working across multiple systems, robots immediately provide them with deep “Customer 360” insights — while retrieving data and updating multiple legacy systems simultaneously.
This means even complex Telefónica processes can be completed in minutes, rather than hours — or even days. Simple robot-guided interactions for agents mean significantly less training, far easier multi-skilling and 100 per cent process compliance.
The results of increased productivity are compelling and wide-ranging. Telefónica has already achieved a staggering €50 million savings per year, and 50 per cent faster service completion times. The ‘softer’ figures are also important, such as 30 per cent reduction in agent attrition, and 30 per cent cost reductions — while achieving +5 Customer Services Index scores.
It’s not only telcoms providers, but most organisations operating in other verticals that are desperately seeking innovative ways of doing more with less. The icing on the cake is that hyperautomated working can be achieved faster, with less capital and resource, than most corporations believe is possible.
Hyperautomation requires no coding or integration effort to augment ways of working across legacy and digital systems: regardless of their complexity. It also augments existing automation and other tech investments, so ROI is delivered in months, not years; and at 10 per cent of the cost of traditional digitisation and automation approaches.
Let’s be clear: hyperautomation is about easily and swiftly creating new types of hyper-productive work that solves problems previously deemed impossible due to the limitations of time, cost, resources, and legacy tech. It means organisations from the most digitally mature, to the most legacy challenged, can transform, survive and thrive.
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