With all the buzz around chatbots and automated customer service, it’s only natural to have a conversation about bots replacing humans. Are we heading towards a world of complete automation where robots rule and humans are a thing of the past?
The role of chatbots and artificial intelligence is having a profound impact on customer communication. The automated functionality of chatbots helps businesses resolve customer inquiries fast and seamlessly. And given the fact that approximately 80% of customer inquiries are repetitive, the opportunity to lessen the impact on call center agents and reduce the cost of service by deploying chatbots is incredibly attractive to businesses in every industry.
The concern for many industry pundits, however, is that the rise of machines will displace hundreds and thousands of workers and eliminate an entire workforce in the process. They fear that ‘agentless call centers’ will eliminate jobs and reduce the need for human agents.
On one hand, it’s reasonable to be concerned about the impact of robots on jobs in the customer service industry. On the other hand, we need to keep things in perspective.
4 Reasons To Stop Worrying About Bots Replacing Humans
Humans are resilient
Despite nearly 300 years of innovation, humans still play a vital role in just about everything we do. We have endured huge societal shifts before and we will continue to do so in the future.
In the early 1800s, at the dawn of the Industrial Revolution, new machinery threatened to replace thousands of jobs. Large groups of English workers, fearing for their livelihoods, moved through the cities and destroyed cotton and woolen mills. They became known as the ‘Luddites’ – a term that today refers to someone who opposes or resists progress. The point is, this isn’t the first time humans have faced disruption at the hands of machines.
It’s human nature to be scared of the unknown, much like the Luddites were afraid of the impact of machines on their livelihoods. But moving forward with new technology and machinery is natural evolution. It’s essential to progress.
In addition, the promise and impact of AI is largely unknown. It just so happens that many people fear the worst. But not unlike how humans adapted to a new and rapidly changing world during the industrial revolution, we will adapt and grow with artificial intelligence.
Put simply, we’re resilient.
Revolutions are uncertain, take time
In the 1950s and sixties, artificial intelligence was only in its infancy but it was starting to gain traction. During this time, many people made the same predictions made today – that robots will take over. The belief was that artificial intelligence had arrived and human tasks would be automated within 10 years.
But 60 years later and we’re still making the same predictions – it’s yet to happen. The fact is, these technologies take time to mature. And for automation to get to the point where all humans are rendered useless, takes generations. There’s a lot that can transpire over that time.
Every industry evolves
Disruptive technology will always bring with it new challenges to overcome. It’s a natural byproduct of an industry evolving. In that sense, there’s little point fighting it. Instead, it’s important to explore ways in which we can use the technology to our advantage and educate people in new skills to create new jobs and possibilities. After all, technology is only as powerful as how we apply it. In regards to Artificial Intelligence, it can only automate the functions that we, as humans, apply it to.
Another concept to consider is that there’s no way of knowing what the future holds. Despite this, many people are quick to predict negative outcomes of artificial intelligence. But what’s to say that the “rise of the machines” doesn’t lead to other, more exciting opportunities for humans?
It used to be that humans were creators of things. We were blacksmiths, woodworkers, artisans. The industrial revolution and the building of factories made those professions extinct as people were piled into the production lines on factory floors. If machines take over those roles, we may see the pendulum swing back with a new artisanal economy where people move back from the factory floor and start creating things again.
There’s an inherent human need for interaction
Never underestimate the power of the human touch. There’s an inherent need for people to connect with other people. It’s ingrained in us. So, while technology may exist or reach a point where humans can be completely replaced, that may not be the best practice.
At Pypestream, for instance, we predict a world of bots and humans working together to deliver exceptional customer experiences. We realize the power and speed of what’s capable with technology. We also acknowledge how important it is to have a human agent on-hand when things don’t go as planned or uncommon scenarios rise.
No matter how far the technology progresses, there will always be a need for us to be human and to interact with other humans. All the technological leaps in the world can’t silence our primal need to connect with other people.
Bots replacing humans? Not likely.
The way we’re seeing bots applied today makes me think they can have a hugely positive impact and help businesses improve their relationships with customers. Trust that things will work and understand that humans will always have a place – no matter how uncertain it may seem.