Salesforce Adds AI to Service Cloud Einstein



Salesforce.com today launched the next generation of Service Cloud Einstein, combining its CRM solution with guided processes and artificial intelligence.

Companies can now leverage Einstein Bots for Service to automate routine service requests and enable frictionless agent handoffs. Lightning Flow for Service provides tools to design and automate customer engagement processes. And Einstein Next Best Action empowers agents by delivering intelligent recommendations and offers for customers.

Salesforce Service Cloud Einstein platform services include the following:

  • Einstein Bots for Service, which let agents respond to customers immediately, automating routine service requests, gathering basic information from customers, and seamlessly handing off customers to the right agent at the right time. And because it uses machine learning and natural language processing, Einstein Bots improve with every interaction.
  • Lightning Flow for Service, which empowers companies to deliver guided service processes that take customers through self-service interactions and guide agent workflow (i.e. fulfilling requests, resolving issues).
  • Einstein Next Best Action, which leverages rules-based and predictive models to provide agents with intelligent, contextual recommendations and offers for customers. Einstein Next Best Actions surface insights directly within the Service Cloud console.

"Artificial intelligence alone will not drive your business forward. AI must be connected to CRM data and guided processes so companies can create seamless experiences that put customers at the center," said Bill Patterson, senior vice president and general manager of Service Cloud at Salesforce.com, in a statement. "Today is a big step forward in empowering our customers with an easy way to provide guided, intelligent service at scale."

"Almost every company looking to compete on customer service is looking at how they can leverage AI, but for even large companies it's often a question of resources," added Rebecca Wettemann, vice president of Nucleus Research, in a statement. "With this release, Salesforce further accelerates time to value for companies that want to better understand and service customers by scaling Salesforce's expertise, depth and breadth of data, and AI models that are laser-focused and trained for customer interaction."

But while many see Salesforce.com's moves as ground-breaking, others say they are symptomatic of larger industry trends. “It’s great to see traditional software companies like Salesforce catching up with the customer service innovation that has been driven over the last couple of years by companies like Facebook," says Joshua March, CEO of Conversocial. "Bots are quickly becoming an essential part of the customer service toolkit. Brands are figuring out how to combine bots and human agents in the same messaging conversation, enabling faster response times and lower costs without negatively impacting the customer experience.

"The possibility for these conversational AI services is really exciting. There is going to be huge potential to apply bots for customer care with emerging messaging channels like Apple’s Business Chat and WhatsApp, and exciting new possibilities when combined with Siri and other voice assistants. This is what the future of customer service is moving toward," March adds.