With the threat of a global economic recession looming, companies are reassessing their internal strategy to stay afloat. A common trend notably seen in contact or call centers is adopting automation via UiPath Apps to maintain output and build resilience amid rising wages and fluctuating headcount. This article explores how automation ameliorates this shortage with UiPath Apps.
A recent survey of CEOs by EY reveals that 98% expect a global recession. And while there is a lack of consensus on its length, depth and severity, over half of CEOs agree it will be exacerbated by ongoing uncertainty caused by the pandemic combined with geopolitical tensions, supply chain disruptions, and talent shortages.
While some of the talent shortage is focused on a lack of skilled talent, much of it is around a shortage of actual people to perform the work. In the US, 75% of employers report difficulty filling open roles and it’s not any different for contact centers.
I personally saw something similar with a healthcare client in the US. While they were national, their contact centers were in Tennessee and they were struggling to recruit seasonal workers to call centers because they couldn’t pay more than supermarkets or delivery drivers. Equally, while working with a global outsourcer, they were struggling to recruit operatives for new programs of work as wages and working conditions had been driven down by offshore competition.
Opportunities for automation emerge
While this type of cost pressure, allied to a strong and dynamic labor market, creates challenges; this type of work is also potentially automatable, not in whole but certainly in part. The addition of and improvements to UiPath Apps have drastically increased the UiPath platform’s applicability to a contact center automation environment previously dominated by niche players such as NICE.
By using Apps, you can build assistant services ranging from a pop-up to a full CRM overlay, which can be configured to interact with an attended bot and in doing so can effectively remove a large part of the on-call work that handlers need to be doing. This lowers Average Handling Time (AHT) and creates more space for upselling and customer service conversations.
Utilizing digital resources with UiPath Apps
The majority of calls to contact centers are for essentially simple queries, and while there has been a growth in adoption of digital contact channels, there remains a large portion of the market who either feel they will have better service if they ‘speak to a human’ or are simply unable or unwilling to use those digital channels. However, speaking to a human operator does not preclude that human from using attended robots to action a request in the background.
With a contact environment, the same queries are repeated each day, and the operator learns to navigate those common queries with a high degree of fluency – nearly autopilot – because they are, deliberately, so repetitive and rules-driven in their design. This makes those actions prime candidates for automation, but the market has historically struggled with bringing this to life in a practical sense because, unlike unattended bots which can effectively work overnight, automation supporting call handlers needs to work dynamically, in real-time.
This is possible with UiPath Apps as it can kick off the process automation running on an attended robot local to the call handler’s machine, meaning it operates in real-time, with no queuing. With the improvements to Apps and the use of attended UiPath bots, this is now a practical use case and we expect to see the adoption of this suite of technologies expand in markets including the UK and USA to combat cost pressures in contact center environments and improve customer service.
Keen to learn more?
If you’re interested in learning how to leverage RPA and intelligent automation in your business processes, our team of advisors are available to chat. Reach out to schedule a free consultation today.