8x8 Announces Integration with Google Cloud Contact Center AI

8x8 today announced the integration of its X Series cloud contact center solution with Google Cloud’s contact center AI solution, an alliance that allows 8x8 to deliver a virtual agent that can enhance the contact center experience for customers and agents alike.

“This announcement is targeted at how do we increase call deflection, how do we increase first-call resolution, and how do we decrease average call handling time using advanced AI and machine learning algorithms,” says Meghan Keough, vice president of product and solutions marketing at 8x8. “Working with Google and some of their core AI capabilities, we’re able to then leverage those capabilities and augment them.”

The virtual agent has two key elements, the first of which focuses on call deflection. Using a combination of 8x8’s AI technology and Google’s contact center AI, incoming voice calls that involve simple questions can be answered without intervention from a live agent.

“For many of our customers, they continue to interact with their customers through voice—that’s their customers’ preferred engagement mode with them. The focus for us is around how do you take the 60 to 70 percent of calls into their support center that are very much routine calls, and start to put this virtual agent in front of those calls to be able to answer them without needing to interact with a live agent,” Keough says. “One of our customers is a large heating repair company, and north of 80 percent of the calls that come into their support organization are people wondering what time the technician will arrive. These can now be answered with this virtual automated agent without having to interact with a live agent, which helps with call deflection.”

The virtual agent’s second key element focuses on reducing call length and repeat calls. With an Agent Assist feature, the virtual agent can hand off calls to a live agent while automatically providing the agent with relevant information.

“For that percentage of calls that aren’t able to be answered through the automated mechanism, what we’re able to do is pass all the context that’s critical for the call to the agent,” Keough elaborates. “What we have is a solution that is being used across departments inside an organization because we have not only the contact center solution, but also voice, video, and chat.”

Keough notes that its heating repair client has its field sales team, field technician team, and internal support team all providing the solution with relevant information. “What we’re able to do is pull the data not just from the support organization,” she says. “We’re also able to mine the conversations that the customer has been having with their field sales person, and the conversations that the field technicians are having, and we’re able to serve all of that information up to the agent at the time of interaction with the customer. This is oriented towards driving first-call resolution.”

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