Smiling young african businessman call center agent laugh at workplace
Image: fizkes/Adobe Stock

Avaya showed off its modernized contact center experience in a series of demonstrations last week on how the company is utilizing Cloud 3.0 as well as conversational AI and machine learning into voice, video, chat and messaging without the need for companies to change platforms.

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Avaya is aiming to improve call center agents’ productivity and the overall employee and customer experience by integrating multiple applications into a single modern composable desktop, as well as personalize the customer experience by enabling agents to view and interact with customers on their inquiries.

In one use case, a company official showed how an Avaya virtual conversation bot listened to an imaginary patient’s medical issue, displayed empathy and then routed them to the appropriate contact to schedule an appointment with a doctor.

The goal is to solve customer business problems without having to change platforms and instead “drop a virtual agent in front of existing infrastructure,’’ said Director and Chief Evangelist Steve Forcum.

Forcum referenced an Avaya retail grocery chain customer that has over 1,000 stores, each with its own phone system from multiple vendors.

“We stood up a virtual agent in front of those stores, and they reported a $3 million increase in productivity,’’ he said.

As the workplace has gone hybrid while businesses continue transforming themselves, the platform has also been enhanced with added security for agents in the contact center working remotely and AI to support more automation, company officials said.

The technology roadmap had to change to accommodate remote workers who need the same functionality from tools they use when they are in the office, explained Karen Hardy, global vice president of product management at Avaya.

Avaya’s contact-center-as-a-service OneCloud communication and collaboration platform can be layered on top of a customer’s existing environment, she said. Partners can also utilize Avaya’s Experience Builder program to create custom communications applications that are designed to help them differentiate themselves from their competition.

Modernizing the contact center

OneCloud offers features including integration with existing CRM platforms and messaging channels, voice-to-text transcription, intelligent routing, and the ability to infuse innovation into conversations, he said. The platform can also remove the background noise someone might hear when calling into a contact center.

In a public safety context, for example, if someone is having a medical emergency, a dispatcher doesn’t have to be distracted by the background noise.

“That’s the power of infusing AI into conversations, not platforms, and doing it via the cloud,” Forcum said.

Avaya is also working on a translation API to eliminate the need for bilingual call center agents, using AI to synthesize voices and convert what is said into English.

The company has also added low code / no-code technology into OneCloud so that business users can build out their apps without having to bring in a developer.

Democratizing technology

Business users can use Avaya’s low-code / no-code drag-and-drop functionality to build applications without needing to involve IT, Forcum said.

“One of the business challenges today is that organizations are under-resourced, and they are looking for ways to solve business problems,’’ Forcum said. The goal is then to empower business users to have the ability to do things like get a customizable virtual agent up and running within minutes.

Avaya’s OneCloud CaaS platform offers conversational 24/7 self-service with the ability to connect to a live agent, intelligently route using business rules, predict needs and proactively engage with customers. The system also offers a “composable desktop,’’ a system that links best-of-breed products that work together via APIs and microservices.

OneCloud is available as-a-service, hybrid or on-premises offering.