Speaking of robots, chatbots are very popular in customer service operations today. Is this type of automation becoming standard?
The real potential for automation lies less in customer communication than in in-house departments and shared service center and business process outsourcing operations. Chatbots are by no means the best solution for direct customer communication. Rather, I see their potential, for instance, in data management, financial processes and documentation. This is because automation generally creates more quality, shortens processing times, is more flexible, and therefore also offers immense potential for savings.
Manfred Stockmann, president of the German Call Center Association for many years, has said, “Contact centers as they exist today will not be needed anymore in the year 2025.” Do you concur with that statement?
I absolutely agree with Mr. Stockmann here. Some time ago, “contact centers” were still called “call centers.” An interesting detail that couldn’t better express the changes across the industry. The people who years ago handled customer contact exclusively over the telephone now use all available channels. This development will certainly continue. Nevertheless, I think in many cases person-to-person communication is irreplaceable.