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Cognitive computing: Building blocks

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Today’s organizations have no lack of information, but using it effectively remains an elusive goal. Increasingly, reliance is being placed on intelligent applications to expedite the delivery of information in a form that can be consumed by customers and employees. In some cases, cognitive search with a deep understanding of semantics helps users carry out a precise search, and in others, a chatbot operating on well-curated content can guide a user through a process or purchase. Machine learning applications that train on large volumes of content in order to predict future outcomes develop models that must be transparent in order to be considered valid and trustworthy.

More than 6 million customer interactions flow through the BMW contact center each year in connection with sales and servicing of its vehicles, which include not only the BMW but also the Rolls Royce and Mini brands. Having found that a significant percentage of customers prefer to do all of their research online and have already decided on the model they want before they reach the showroom, the company sought to offer self-service interactions. At the same time, BMW wanted to provide its contact center representatives and showroom floor salespeople with accurate and current information so they could meet customer needs and keep satisfaction at high levels.

BMW selected Verint Knowledge Management to create an environment in which customers or contact center representatives could interact in a natural way with content that had been selected and curated to support customer journeys. The content included product specifications and configuration, application is referred to as the BMW Online Genius. It was first rolled out to the contact center, and subsequently to web self-service and the retail network. “Verint enabled BMW to offer the kind of high-end customer search capability that its customers demanded,”said John Chmaj, senior director, product strategy, knowledge management, at Verint. “To do this, they had to organize their content in a more consumable way, and embed analytics so they could track user behavior and continuously improve.” The combination of intelligent search and improved curation led to much better search results.

Embedded AI

AI is embedded across many elements of Verint’s customer engagement platform. “The platform uses natural language processing in its intelligent virtual assistants and provides cognitive search capabilities,” noted Chmaj. “It detects anomalies inside customer interactions, and also determines intent based on the concepts the customers are expressing.” Verint’s real-time speech analytics capabilities make it a valuable asset for coaching customer service reps who are addressing customer requests or problems. Its workforce management tools handle fluctuating demands and support employees working remotely, as has become more prevalent in the COVID-19 era. Over the past decade, Verint has made numerous technology acquisitions and continued innovation in the areas related to knowledge management, self-service, customer feedback and digital analytics to further expand its customer engagement portfolio. Taken together, Verint’s in-house and acquired technologies constitute a broad knowledge management solution that provides a well-curated knowledgebase and the tools to access information in a contextually relevant way, whether the user is a prospective purchaser or a company employee.

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