The advancing capabilities of Intelligent Virtual Assistants (IVAs, a.k.a. virtual agents, chatbots) are driving dramatic improvements in customer experience and helping contact centers contain costs while improving agent productivity.
What is an intelligent virtual assistant?
An intelligent virtual assistant is an artificial intelligence-powered chatbot that can carry out tasks for a user. IVAs can be used for a variety of purposes, such as customer service, marketing, or product support.
What is the difference between a virtual agent and a virtual assistant?
There is a big difference between virtual agents and virtual assistants. Virtual agents are computer programs that customers can interact with through natural language, such as chatbots. Virtual assistants, on the other hand, are people who provide customer service support through digital channels such as chat, email, and social media. Virtual agents are used to automate customer interactions, whereas virtual assistants are used to provide human support.
What are the most popular intelligent virtual assistant platforms?
The most popular intelligent virtual assistant platforms include Amazon's Alexa, Apple's Siri, Microsoft's Cortana, and Google's Assistant.
As customers grow more accustomed to interacting with bots on a regular basis, their expectations for these interactions are changing. Whether engaging via phone, a digital channel, or a combination of both (according to Microsoft, 66% of consumers use three different channels when contacting customer service) they want to converse naturally, the way they would with friends and family. Seems simple enough – the only problem is, not all IVAs can deliver.
Early generation IVAs simply can’t compete with today’s intelligent systems. Legacy systems are unable to retain context, and can only handle one single intent at a time, making the conversation disjointed and unnatural for customers – a far cry from the experiences they expect. And forcing customers to deal with this kind of system can cost you – 33% of customers say they’re likely to switch companies after just one bad customer service experience.
Conversely, today’s intelligent virtual assistants offer natural, human-like experiences that make it simple for customers to get the answers or assistance they need.
|Intelligent Virtual Assistants||Legacy Virtual Assistants|
|Handle multiple intents simultaneously||Single intents|
|Retain context and predict next steps||Can’t retain context|
|Natural, human-like conversations||Can’t carry on natural conversations|
|On par with the best human agents||Disjointed, frustrating experiences|
If you’re ready to implement a new artificial intelligent virtual assistant (IVA) or upgrade your legacy system, it’s imperative to make the right choice for your business and your customers. This Ovum Report is the tool you need. Download your copy and get a detailed analysis of the leading IVAs on the market, how to find
the right virtual assistant, learn what capabilities will make your implementation more successful in the minds of customers, and see why Ovum analysts consider 7 AIVA a top choice for enterprises.