The emergence of automation and artificial intelligence has caused mass panic among people within the BPO industry, saying these disruptive technologies can replace the human workforce. Fortunately, experts went in and eased the panic, focusing on how humans and machine can work together in delivering outstanding customer service. Google Duplex can be considered as a threat, but the current standing of Google is showing there is no takeover or connection with contact centers. Streamlining customer service is difficult, especially with low manpower due to cost restrictions. Getting outsourcing solutions help in acquiring a ready-to-deploy skilled workforce to be integrated quickly. To get started with outsourcing, call (PH) 02-6571872 / (AU) +61 419 200 663 or email email@example.com.
Recently, the tech giant Google, famously known in the tech world through the search engine Google, among other innovations, has made another innovation that the BPO industry sees as a possible threat to the workforce. First shown to the public during Google’s I/O conference in May 2018, Google Duplex is an artificial intelligence assistant designed to speak human-sounding and human-like in phone calls on behalf of a business during different human-to-business interactions, such as booking a table reservation at a restaurant or hair appointments.
With the AI program’s skill in speaking in human-like nature, and, of course, its power to automate processes and handle customers, it has gradually become a threat to contact centers. The Philippines, being a hub for BPO industries to invest in — thanks to the low-cost workforce and office space rates — is definitely at risk. According to a report by Rappler, the country houses around 1.1 million to 1.3 million BPO employees, with the majority of this population belongs to the call center segment.
Going back to its human-like nature in speaking, this trait is already a great asset for contact centers since customers don’t want to speak with machines. Gizmodo conducted a study in 2015 regarding the matter and 10% of respondents said they weren’t satisfied with automated voice response systems. On the other hand, 80% answer the automated phase quickly in order to speak with a human being.
There were recent reports that Google already had a client in mind. But the tech giant denied the claims, saying in a statement, “We’re currently focused on consumer use cases for the ‘Duplex’ technology and we aren’t testing ‘Duplex’ with any enterprise clients.”
“Duplex is designed to operate in very specific use cases, and currently we’re focused on testing with restaurant reservations, hair salon booking, and holiday hours with a limited set of trusted testers. It’s important that we get the experience right and we’re taking a slow and measured approach as we incorporate learning and feedback from our tests,” Google reported.