As you consider adopting Artificial Intelligence (AI) and automation solutions, keep in mind the large number of companies that have already tested and succeeded using these technologies. Although AI and automation come in many forms, Intelligent Virtual Agents (IVAs), or digital colleagues as we call them, have been particularly useful in helping companies manage high-volume tasks.

In this post, we examine several implementations of IPsoft’s digital colleague Amelia and how she helps organizations build a hybrid workforce, freeing humans from mundane tasks and allowing them to focus on higher value tasks.

Whisper Agent

Allstate deployed Amelia as a whisper agent at their call center to reduce call times while increasing customer satisfaction. While on the phone with customers, human agents interact with Amelia through a chat interface, where she leads them step-by-step through a variety of procedures such as coverage changes, proof-of-insurance and reinstatement requests.

Amelia is currently trained on more than 50 unique industry-specific topics, which allows her to quickly answer customer questions and provide personalized policy information via secure integrations with Allstate’s back-end systems. Since she was first deployed, average call duration has been reduced from 4.6 to 4.2 minutes — and that translates into a substantial increase in total productivity when you consider the thousands of calls handled each day.

Amelia has assisted Allstate employees on millions of customer interactions, averaging 250,000 per month. Future plans from Allstate include increasing Amelia’s workload and expanding her scope to eventually interact directly with agents and customers.

Call Center Agent

The BBVA Group is the largest bank in Spain by business volume with an international footprint covering 35 countries. It boasts 68 million customers around the globe, which translates to millions of customer interactions every year. BBVA began its AI journey with Amelia by hiring her to handle voice calls for customers in Mexico, where the company fielded 100 million calls per year.

Amelia, who is called Mariana at BBVA, started at the bank after proving her ability to manage conversations and queries successfully during training, achieving a 98% accuracy rate. Amelia now handles 32% of calls to the bank’s retail call center in Mexico without any human intermediation. Amelia multiplied effectiveness by a factor of four in just a few months. Amelia can also automatically refund a disputed charge herself (up to $50 USD) in less than 24 hours.

IT Operations

Becton Dickinson (BD) is a Fortune 500 global medical supplies manufacturer. Amelia is successfully helping BD employees with an array of IT requests such as gaining access to Wi-Fi networks, providing access to computer USB ports, and troubleshooting high-volume IT issues related to common things like Outlook, Skype, printers and ticket status. After BD completed its acquisition of C.R. Bard, Inc. in 2017, BD worked with IPsoft to develop an Amelia skill to assist Bard employees with their migration into BD systems, including guidance for onboarding processes and answering basic FAQs.

As a result of implementing Amelia, incident resolution times are falling significantly. For example, for more than 6,500 visitors per month, Amelia is granting guest Wi-Fi access with a 97.5% success rate. Previously this process took up to three minutes, but can now be executed in less than 30 seconds.

IT Support and Customer Service

SEB is a leading Nordic retail bank, headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden. The bank has more than 15,000 employees serving more than 4 million customers across Europe. The bank initially implemented IPsoft’s Amelia, renamed Aida, for its internal IT helpdesk, handling password resets, network connectivity and firewall support, supplies, meeting reservations and troubleshooting business applications such as Skype.

Following success of the initial internal deployment, SEB also introduced Aida as a Swedish-speaking, external-facing chat agent to deliver scalable 24/7 customer support. She facilitated a variety of customer service requests, including guiding customers through ordering replacement credit cards, booking meetings with branch staff, and providing general account and branch office information.

Today, Aida provides IT support for 15,000 employees. Aida takes simple repetitive requests out of employees’ hands, allowing them to focus on higher-value tasks, and more complex and engaging interactions. She especially helps meet demand during peak interaction times thanks to her always-on availability.

Aida’s accuracy in recognizing intent is far superior to that of a static chatbot. She’s capable of properly determining intent during 93% of her conversations. If she can’t determine intent, she seamlessly escalates the conversation to a human employee. User response has been exceptional — 91% rate their experiences with Aida as “very good” or “good.”

Voice-Based Service

Telefónica is a Spanish multinational telecommunications company headquartered in Madrid. The company has a presence in 15 countries across Europe and Latin America. In the telco space, it ranks seventh in revenues, sixth in market capitalization and fifth in number of subscribers.

Telefónica implemented Amelia as a voice-based customer service agent for its Peruvian contact centers to handle all calls received to hotlines, which handle roughly 72 million calls in total. As a result, the company developed 28 specific skills it wanted Amelia to master, including 18 end-to-end automated skills, and 10 skills that would require Amelia to route a call to an appropriate human agent.

After a four-month ramp up, Amelia now handles 100% of all call volume. She recognizes customer intent correctly on 97% of calls, and customer abandonment rates on Amelia-led calls decreased 24% from the initial week of deployment. In addition, customer satisfaction in calls managed by the virtual agent are at the same level as those handled by human representatives.

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