Gartner says the trend of customers assigning their digital activities to VPAs & chat-bots will grow over the next 10 years
In order to cope with the avalanche of digital information and activities, customers—like organisations—will increasingly turn to automation moving forward, according to consulting firm Gartner. “There is often a lot of discussion about how enterprises continue to invest in Artificial Intelligence (AI) to save time and money, but we often overlook the next generation of customers being equally amenable to conducting their personal experiences the same way,” said Anthony Mullen, senior research director at Gartner.
“The reality is that customers have to engage with endless digital activities over their lifetime, which means much more data to consider. The trend of customers assigning their endless digital activities to their virtual personal assistants (VPAs), chatbots and other self-service tools will grow over the next 10 years.”
Self-service is becoming the norm as customers increasingly expect an effortless experience at scale, Gartner points out in its new study, “The Future of Customer Self-service: The digital future will stall without customer-led automation”. Organisations are turning to naturalistic engagement methods, such as voice and other AI-powered technologies, to give customers what they want and achieve higher operational efficiency.
In fact, 91% of organisations are planning to deploy AI within the next three years. By 2030, a billion service tickets will be raised automatically by customer-owned bots.
“What’s interesting is that when we begin to look at the dynamics of self-service and continued automation by organisations over a longer time frame, cracks begin to appear,” said Mullen. “The burden of managing and supporting self-services is being taken from today’s support staff and being pushed into customers’ hands. This level of delegation, from ‘DIY’ to customer-led AI, will be a major force shaping customer self-service.”
There is a desire for automation and the use of AI to save time and money across all generations; however Generation Z (those born between 1995 and 2009) is the most amenable to using these technologies. By 2030, personal technologies will become the go-to for user experience delivery. As Generation Z will represent the largest customer base then, it will lead in the use of customer-directed automation technologies to obtain support and value from the organisations they choose to interact with.