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AI The Call Center Nemesis?

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Pundits and experts alike are predicting the demise of Call and Contact Centres at the hand of rapidly advancing AI systems, and it is easy to see why. Google have recently demonstrated remarkable gains in conversational AI used as a booking engine. At the same time, IBM Watson has demonstrated an encyclopedic knowledge and a reasonably sophisticated ability to debate. But could they all be wrong? For sure, Call/Contact Centres are far from ideal, but they replace other (older) modes that were even worse and we should take care not to throw the baby out with the bathwater!

Published in: Leadership & Management
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AI The Call Center Nemesis?

  1. 1. AIProfessor Peter Cochrane OBE cochrane.org.uk G e n e s i s ? Nemesis ? And the call centre
  2. 2. W r o n g M i n d e d? How many people can I replace by AI? …and can I increase profitability?
  3. 3. R i g h t M i n d e d? My people are smart hard to recruit and cost a fortune to train…can AI make them even smarter and more effective? …and can I grow my business?
  4. 4. H A R D R e c r u i t i n g Very difficult to get down below 4% & necessitates theimport of immigrant labour or offshoring or of skills and work Employees become far more valued and expensive
  5. 5. W h y A I N O W ? The basics of AI were formulated over 70 years ago and since it has just been promises and 30 years in the future? …how come it is suddenly hot and what can it really do ?
  6. 6. N O B S ! Why now? Brief AI history Where is it now? What might it do in future? How it can change your business?
  7. 7. 1957: 13 people deliver a computer 2019: 20 computers in one hand £29,000 then ~£613,000 today HD 320k >3.5kW Q u a d C o r e Memory 2.G 12W £20 P E R S P E C T I V E
  8. 8. N e v e r s ay n e v e r Considered impossible by philosophers BEWARE MANTRAS Computers will never : Play chess Play a good game of chess Beat a human being Beat a grand master . Be intelligent Be creative Chess 1997 Watson 2011 Poker 2017 GO 2017 +++ Innovation Invention Music Art
  9. 9. Ex e m p l a r N e w C r e a t i v i t y Criticism It is just copying and aping what human composers have done !
  10. 10. Ex e m p l a r N e w C r e a t i v i t y Criticism It is just copying and aping what human composers have done ! Retort 1 You mean exactly like human composers do ? Retort 2 AI has only just got into this game that humans have be at for well over 3M years
  11. 11. A I & i n n ovat i o n A primary tool of discovery Analytics: Medical Security Big Data Political Networks Economic Genomic Proteomic Diplomatic Complexity ++++ We are way past the point where humans can analyse complexity even on a small scale ! Design: Chips Devices Systems Networks Behaviours ++++ Knowledge: Veracity Linking Creation Curation Searching Selection ++++ The machines are starting to innovate at lower levels and where humans cannot!
  12. 12. Are you an artificial intelligence ? T O D A Y Becoming an accepted norm
  13. 13. Are you an artificial intelligence ? Does it Matter ? T O D A Y Becoming an accepted norm Talking to your car, TV, computer mobile - Amazon Alexa, Google Home et al
  14. 14. G a m e C h a n g e r 2 o 1 8 Goodbye Turing Test and a lot of nonsense Spot the huma n a nd the mach in e: which is the smarter ?
  15. 15. G L O B A L P E O P L E S H O RTA G E UK has >1M vacancies in tech, farming, health…
  16. 16. Ex e m p l a r H u m a n e x p e r i e n c e 5 - 2 0 k o p e ra t i o n s i n a l i f e t i m e Networked AI - Robot >20k o p e ra t i o n s p e r d a y
  17. 17. R E A L I T Y Buddy-buddy working
  18. 18. 5 TYPE 1 Reactive Task Specific Very Limited Largely Pattern Matching Human Programmers: Chess, cards, dominoes data, speech, pictures, characters, behaviours, movements+ Narrow Cognition Largely Programmed by AI alone: Subsume the networked knowledge of previous and current generations TYPE 3 Reasoning Multi-Task Ability Broadly Applicable TYPE 2 Learning Task Specific Broadly Applicable Memory and Analysis Initial Human AI Program That Then Adapts: Recognises highly complex/ large scale non-linear relationships A I L A D D E R Progress & Categories Full Awareness May be categorised as a ‘being’: With a wide range of sensory units networked to other machines TYPE 4 Self-Aware
  19. 19. 5 TYPE 1 Reactive Task Specific Very Limited Largely Pattern Matching Human Programmers: Chess, cards, dominoes data, speech, pictures, characters, behaviours, movements+ Narrow Cognition Largely Programmed by AI alone: Subsume the networked knowledge of previous and current generations TYPE 3 Reasoning Multi-Task Ability Broadly Applicable TYPE 2 Learning Task Specific Broadly Applicable Memory and Analysis Initial Human AI Program That Then Adapts: Recognises highly complex/ large scale non-linear relationships A I L A D D E R Progress & Categories Full Awareness May be categorised as a ‘being’: With a wide range of sensory units networked to other machines TYPE 4 Self-Aware ~ 70yrs to become a solid & deployable technology 2027 Robotic embodiment, extensive sensors & actuators plus entity networking rapidly raises the game 2017 Google Alpha GO p r o p e l s A I i n t o a n autonomous future of learning & doing 2024 AI-Human cooperation see exponential innovation & progress of AI capabilities
  20. 20. AI = Schrodinger’s Brain? “At once the saviour of mankind whilst also being the biggest threat to the survival of our species”
  21. 21. AI HUMAN Amplifier Intellect, capabilities, productivity… “We have an unmatched ability to deal with surprises, the unexpected and the unusual…to adapt and find holding solutions ahead of a full understanding” “Machines excel at the known, the well defined, the tried and tested, the precision…and they do so tirelessly without error or complaint”
  22. 22. F R U S T R AT I O N It doesn’t have to be this way !
  23. 23. F R U S t r a T I O N It doesn’t have to be this way !
  24. 24. T H E F I X AI can address all these problems and more …and a low level they are better, and lower cost, than humans Humans can be the ultimate AI hand-off for problems far too complex for an AI to deal with Humans and AI learn from the individual and joint experiences of working with customers Humans are freed up to expand the rage of services provided and to grlow the business
  25. 25. P E O P L E S H O R T A G E We don’t need to waste humans doing this !
  26. 26. E V E R F E LT L I K E T H I S ? You are far too capable to be wasted on the mundane Adding human value; addressing what AI cannot T h a n k Y o u

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