Can AI Help Deliver Exceptional CX With a Human Touch?

No matter how much we automate things, there will invariably be a time when a human wants to talk to other humans.

A lot of my creative friends have been playing around with the Midjourney Artificial Intelligence (AI) art generator app in recent weeks — and it’s provoked a lot of discussion about how generative AI may replace the creative process.

But as artist John Picacio pointed out, it is really another tool in the toolbox — albeit one that may move the baseline and spur the exploration of new ways to express creativity.

“If your work can be replicated by AI so that the consumers and clients can cut you out of the equation, it’s not necessarily game over,” Picacio said. “But it’s time to evolve. The key will be about maintaining a level of differentiation and recognizability apart from the AI. In the end it will be about how an artist’s work resonates with the audience in ways that a program can’t replace. Same as it ever was.”

AI as Part of the Customer Experience

This got me thinking about AI as part of the customer experience. A recent blog from Gartner analyst Christopher Sladdin detailed the role of AI and the rise of the machine customer; in the piece, Sladdin hypothesizes that we may be moving toward a state where a combination of smart devices and machine learning (ML) could drive customer experience events without any direct human intervention, or even awareness those events happened.

That may sound great in theory. Having devices that know they need repair, or new supplies, ahead of time and that can contact the right service or suppliers to ensure they stay functional is a neat idea … as long as it works.

Which leads me to my hallway. Or to be more precise the intelligent thermostat on the wall. The one that is a connected device that is meant to learn our habits and set the right temperature at the right time of day based on our preferences and movements. The one that is meant to figure out the most cost-efficient heating plan for our house. The one that isn’t working as it should. The one that my wife is getting frustrated with and can’t find a way to connect with an actual human at the company to discuss things with.

Related Article: What’s Next for Artificial Intelligence in Customer Experience?

AI and Machine Learning Are Great Tools, But We Still Need Humans

No matter how much we automate things, there will invariably be a time when a human wants to talk to another human about the products and services we supply.

And I believe, perhaps paradoxically, that this is where AI and machine learning can become some of the most valuable assets in our customer experience tool set.

Back in my September 2019 article for CMSWire, Machine Learning Isn’t Rocket Science, I talked about how ML is great at recognizing patterns, but not much else. ML is basically a subset of AI that relies on patterns and inference to drive conclusions. That means it can see what is happening in a data set, but not why it is happening. Any conclusions are based on patterns established by what happened in the past. There is an underlying assumption that the next set of data is going to be similar enough for the patterns and models it recognized to still be applicable.

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