Artificial intelligence has gone mainstream. The term is now regularly appended to all manner of tools and technologies, even when it’s unclear exactly what role AI plays in delivering desired outcomes.
Given the rapid evolution of intelligent services, this scenario isn’t surprising — like cloud, mobile, and other digital frameworks before it, AI eventually will find its niche. One area that showed early promise and has largely lived up to the hype is customer service. Eighty percent of customers now expect AI to improve customer service, and 43 percent of financial service firms are already using AI to personalize the customer experience.
Here's how AI is shaping the current state of customer service in the financial industry, and what firms can do to make the most of smart solutions.
RELATED: AI drives real business results for financial institutions.
Four Use Cases for AI in Financial Customer Service
With AI tools now proving their worth in real-world customer service scenarios, several common use cases have emerged.
- Call centers: Using a combination of artificial intelligence and natural language processing, financial firms can make call centers more efficient. Customers initially connect with intelligent chatbots capable of answering basic questions and redirecting users to human agents as needed. These tools can also create audio transcriptions, parse key details from conversations and assess customers’ level of satisfaction with the service offered.
- Proactive customer support and maintenance: AI tools can help firms automate key support processes. These include sending reminder emails and alerts for upcoming bill payments and investment opportunities or notifying customers of unusual transactions. Intelligent solutions are also capable of analyzing large data sets to detect potential fraud.
- Personalized recommendations: By combining financial, demographic and customer-provided personal data, AI tools can offer personalized products, services and investment recommendations. While this application of AI is still in its early stages, firms should expect an uptick in adoption as evolving technologies improve recommendation accuracy and lower overall risk.
- Automated document processing: By using AI to automate document processing, organizations can reduce the time and effort that customers and staff spend on paperwork. As AI adoption increases, there’s the potential for banks to automate document capture and completion through the full workflow process.
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How Can Financial Firms Make Use of AI?
While AI solutions help deliver on end-state expectations — for example, tools might provide investment recommendations or help companies address customer concerns quickly — organizations need the right digital and cultural frameworks to make the best use of AI.
From a digital standpoint, firms need IT infrastructure capable of connecting to multiple data sources and leveraging this data in real time. From a cultural perspective, they need buy-in from both IT and frontline staff, which in turn requires committed and consistent C-suite support.
FIND OUT: How a mid-sized bank used technology to modernize its workflows.
We can help financial service firms apply AI to their businesses in four ways: ideation, evaluation, consultation and customization.
Ideation workshops are a great way for firms of any size to start the process of deciding how they want to use AI, learn what tools are available, and understand what problems they can solve. Next is evaluation: We can help firms right-size AI to fit their business needs and determine if it’s better to outsource or build tools in-house.
Consultation helps organizations understand out their AI journey from start to finish, providing a roadmap for investments and costs. And with customization, financial service firms can ensure that AI frameworks support use cases and deliver on business goals.
AI has arrived. To deliver on the customer service potential of smart services, however, financial service firms need purpose-built AI solutions that address specific use cases and drive sustained success.
This article is part of BizTech's EquITy blog series.