Cognitive contact center

Use AI and intelligent automation to improve back- and front-office experiences

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Contact center interactions are falling short of their full potential

Regular contact center interactions are shallow and contrived in comparison to a casual conversation with a friend. A conversation with a friend takes into account your mutual histories, the context, how many discussions you’ve had, independent reflection on the topic, nonverbal cues, tone of voice, details shared by text, and your implied understanding of that friend’s goals.

A contact center agent alone, no matter how skilled, could never replicate this type of meaningful exchange. By allowing technology to supplement the information that an agent has about a customer, the cognitive contact center creates a true customer relationship and a setting conducive to conversational commerce.

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What is a cognitive contact center?

A cognitive contact center is a next-generation, intelligent-automation-enabled, bot, and AI-driven contact center. A cognitive contact center takes into account the customer experience (CX), the stage of the customer journey, and other customer data to enrich every single interaction.

Establishing a cognitive contact center involves consciously acquiring knowledge and deeper understanding; demonstrating sensitivity to attitudes, emotions, and beliefs; factoring context; and then using all that information to act on the customer’s behalf. A cognitive contact center creates deeper customer relationships by anticipating and more closely mimicking real human connection.

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Cognitive contact centers help customers and agents

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Front office: Virtual agents (bots)

Customers, particularly younger ones, increasingly prefer live-chat to communicate with brands. A cognitive contact center places technology, or a bot, at the forefront and center of every customer interaction. Today’s virtual agents can respond conversationally by chat, phone, voice assistant, or instant message and then learn from the outcomes.

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Back office: Live-agent assistance

AI and intelligent automation enables humans in the contact center to better connect with customers. An agent—or their support team (i.e., trainers, quality analysts,managers)—with access to AI, analytics, speech recognition, knowledgebases, etc. can use data from multiple sources for decision-making. Bots can handle routine work, such as data entry and status updates.

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Hybrid: Where you need AI

The technology stack that powers today’s contact centers is extensive, so there are a multitude of opportunities to transition to a cognitive contact center model. HGS can work with you to enhance that stack to improve the CX, deflect calls, achieve metrics, reduce costs, enhance the employee experience (EX), and more. We can help you pinpoint the best place to start — and advance!

Virtual agents: Use intelligent automation in the front office for efficiency and convenience

Through chatbots, self-service websites, mobile apps, and voice assistants, consumers are becoming quite accustomed to having conversations with machines. Behind the scenes, these machines often use cognitive AI and intelligent automation.

AI and automation can handle mundane, repetitive customer inquiries, leaving agents to handle more complex and fulfilling tasks. Consumers enjoy quicker responses with AI.

Interacting with a bot initially does not mean that the customer is locked into an end-to-end conversation with a machine. As the situation demands, a conversation can alternate between machine and human. A bot can gather details and transfer it to a human agent so the consumer doesn’t have to repeat themselves. An agent can switch back to the bot for reliable, timely customer follow-up.

AI and automation technologies have matured and become more accessible to businesses of all sizes, without undertaking costly, large-scale digital transformations. HGS Digital can help you sift through all your omnichannel, AI, automation, and cognitive options.

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Live-agent assist: Use AI and automation in the back office for EX, speed, and accuracy

To improve the CX, brands worldwide are enhancing their contact centers by introducing new channels.

Companies are investing millions in the front office—without also investing in their employees. Companies are not giving employees the tools they need to support omnichannel environments and not using cognitive computing abilities to understand and facilitate what the agent is hoping to gain.

It’s well known that the employee experience (EX) has a dramatic impact on the CX. When agents are engaged, consumers can sense that job satisfaction.

Predictive and cognitive analytics can help agents anticipate customer concerns. Prepared, satisfied, and empowered agents stay longer, perform better, and engage with consumers in meaningful ways.

By eliminating repetitive tasks and providing sentiment, demographic, product information, status, etc. so that agents can better tailor responses, cognitive contact centers make an agent’s job more enjoyable, which leads to KPI improvements.

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Live-chat and conversational commerce increases customer satisfaction and reduces cost to serve

  • People communicate 5x more on chat than phone (StatisticBrain)
  • Texting increased 7,700% over the last decade (StatisticBrain)
  • 89% of consumers want the ability to text businesses (StatisticBrain)
  • Instead of handling only 1 phone conversation at a time, agents can handle up to 4 live-chats simultaneously

Our cognitive contact centers use AI across the entire customer journey

High-impact conversations

  • AI process automation
  • Automatic routing
  • IVR deflection
  • Bots&Brains™

Omnichannel messaging

  • Texting and SMS
  • Instant messaging
  • Web and mobile apps
  • Voice assistants

CX integration

  • Apps
  • CRM software
  • Customer analytics platforms
  • Marketing technologies

Enhanced analytics

  • Agent efficiency
  • Customer satisfaction
  • Attribution
  • Loyalty

Our cognitive contact centers combine Bots&Brains™

HGS Digital is uniquely equipped with thousands of customer care specialists, proven processes, and a global IT team that specializes in automation and AI technologies.

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When you engage with us, your team will comprise contact center experts familiar with building industry-tailored contact centers of the future, and technology professionals familiar with AI, machine learning, automation, analytics, and more.

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We work with the world’s most recognizable brands. Where your workflows and procedures may be lacking, we can apply our expertise to bring a cognitive contact center to fruition. Where organizational silos exist, we can mediate.

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We take a platform- and vendor-agnostic approach and recommend solutions that are aligned specifically to your greatest contact center improvement needs. We work with all the major technology vendors to integrate with your existing systems.


Cognitive contact center technologies can be applied practically anywhere.

  • Phone, email, chat, SMS, instant messaging, social media, etc. channels
  • Website and app self-service
  • Quality assurance
  • Training
  • Recruiting and HR
  • Workforce management
  • Reporting and analytics

You can start anywhere! However, it likely makes the most sense to start with a mini-project that provides tangible results that demonstrate a solid proof of concept for the decision makers in your organization. HGS Digital team members are more than happy to investigate and collaborate with you to create business cases and proposals, do some pilot testing, and help you sell the ideas across departments.

Benefits vary from organization to organization, but generally:

  • Increase customer self-service and convenience
  • Increase consistency and accuracy
  • Decrease average handle time and turnaround times
  • Allow humans to focus on more complex tasks
  • Detect the anomalies and patterns that humans can’t
  • Improve the CX and EX
  • Increase personalization
  • Improve satisfaction, engagement, and retention
  • Contain costs while driving revenue

An AI-powered contact center:

  • Uses conversational AI and intelligent automation to answer questions of low and medium complexity
  • Tracks the customer journey and makes it available to agents
  • Integrates with CRM and other systems to surface customer information to agents
  • Delivers unified data in context of the customer journey
  • Uses personalization to recommend next best action / offer
  • Utilizes robotic process automation to perform routine tasks

Yes! HGS Digital provides consulting services and experts on demand to in-house contact centers. We can also provide these services to existing HGS clients who avail of our more fulsome contact center solutions.

Our strengths in AI and intelligent automation design and implementation, solution architecture, customer-facing bots, digital experience and customer journey mapping, technology integration, and analytics all come together to deliver cognitive contact center solutions that drive cost savings, average handle time and turnaround time reductions, and CX improvements.

Contact center automation has been a hot topic for nearly a decade. A cognitive contact center combines automation with AI technologies, such as IBM Watson, to enable us to engage more conversationally and knowledgeably with your consumers. Technology stacks for modern contact centers have finally matured to a stage where they can deliver on efficiency and convenience promises.

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