Pegasystems, a software company that empowers customer engagement at the world’s leading enterprises, recently announced new artificial intelligence (AI) and robotic automation capabilities in its customer relationship management (CRM) offerings that enable businesses to optimize their sales and customer service effectiveness with desktop analytics and machine learning.

Loyalty360 caught up with Don Schuerman, Chief Technology Officer, Pegasystems, to learn more about this new technology and how it impacts customer experience and employee engagement.

Can you talk about how this technology will, specifically, enhance workforce management and, ultimately, impact employee engagement?

Schuerman: By unifying workforce intelligence directly within CRM applications, businesses now have an added layer of intelligence that helps them find opportunities for improvement in how their people, processes, and technology work together. There’s a lot of wasted time and effort that diverts a customer service rep’s focus away from the customer, which leads to poor experiences, unhappy customers and, ultimately, lost revenues. For example, a customer service rep who is toggling between 15 different screens just to place an order while the customer is on the phone adds precious minutes to the call – frustrating not just the customer but also the employee. That leaves an impression that’s hard to reverse and impacts buying decisions.

In addition to improving customer experiences, the unification of workforce intelligence and CRM will ultimately lead to better employee engagement. If we can help the sales and customer service rep eliminate hurdles that hold them back from focusing on the customer or prospect, they will undoubtedly see better outcomes and higher revenues – and be more satisfied in their jobs.

What can the new AI and robotic automation capabilities within the CRM applications do that will impact companies and their employees?

Schuerman: We’re using AI and robotics to identify patterns in the ways people work that go largely unnoticed or that, perhaps, managers had an inkling was there, but couldn’t put a finger on it.

Workforce intelligence on its own tells you where your inefficiencies lie in the way your organization works. But now when you layer that information with the performance data in CRM applications – such as CSRs with the best Net Promoter Score, or salespeople who generate the biggest sales pipeline – you can start to understand why you are seeing success (or not seeing success) in certain areas. For example, now you can correlate the best performing CSRs to the ways they use certain applications and make that a best practice for the entire call center group. Or perhaps it finds the lowest performers toggle between too many screens, opening up an opportunity to automate those processes to improve their performance.

The key takeaway is that we’re offering up opportunities for improvement that not only solve organizational inefficiencies but directly improve performance in a real and tangible manner that you can measure.

What makes this technology unique?

Schuerman: There is no other CRM solution in the market today that combines workforce intelligence directly within CRM applications. Our artificial intelligence engine has been used to help drive better customer experiences for several years now, not still stuck in the theoretical or being tested in a lab. We’ll continue to use our AI head start in real businesses to find even more ways that AI can drive better business outcomes across any number of industry scenarios.

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