CX Automation: Experts at the Heart of Artificial Intelligence


I’m excited to announce our CX Automation platform, a breakthrough approach for customer service that puts experts at the heart of AI. It’s our first offering designed specifically to deliver better self-service, focusing “ahead of the ticket” by helping a customer quickly resolve their problem before contacting a company.

It’s increasingly clear that the majority of customer service inquiries can be handled automatically (most analysts estimate 50-80% within 5 years) by giving customers the tools and assistance to instantly and effortlessly resolve their problems, or by predictively identifying and fixing these issues before the customer becomes aware of them. That said, most companies today are stumbling out of the gates with early AI and automation attempts, with failure rates Gartner cites as high as 85 percent. We’ve surveyed these companies and found four root causes of AI project mortality: the lack of clean data, the lack of quality content, the lack of good signal, and the high maintenance requirements of training and retraining models to keep up with changing conditions.

Directly’s CX Automation platform solves these problems and gives companies the foundation to deliver AI with breadth, speed, and empathy. The secret sauce? A platform that moves from human-in-the-loop to expert-in-the-loop, helping companies build networks of their domain experts, optimized by gig mechanics that tap these experts to clean the data, create the content, boost the signal, and maintain the system.

How it works is simple: The CX Automation platform allows your expert users to identify gaps in your self-service content and solutions and: (1) create rich support content and answers than can be delivered automatically; (2) teach the AI by providing feedback on each answer as its delivered, with suggestions to improve matching and content, and; (3) resolve complex questions when the AI and broader self-service can’t.

Instant answers are delivered in the voice of the expert who authored the answer, with the expert available behind the answer, delivering a new level of experience and empathy unmatched by intelligent assistants and standalone AI. Behind the scenes, gig-economy mechanics such as routing, rewards, and incentives ensure quality by using answers from only highly-rated experts that demonstrate product and/or service expertise.

We bring this all together in a system that integrates with all leading CRM applications (Microsoft Dynamics, Salesforce Service Cloud, Oracle Service Cloud, and Zendesk) and open APIs that allow integration with existing help centers, enterprise knowledge bases, messaging and business intelligence systems. For companies with existing AI and automation solutions, the platform can deliver the content and training to make existing solutions actually work, and work better.

This innovation, which earned best-in-class ratings from Frost & Sullivan, is already driving exceptional outcomes for customers—reducing support volume by up to 40 percent, delivering CSAT 20 points higher than virtual assistants and intelligent agents, and reducing operating costs by 67–83 percent. These savings can be reinvested to engage customers in a much broader set of channels, and because the platform moves the work from the support team to the experts, companies are able to use our platform in days with no added staff or ongoing maintenance from their teams. 

What’s Next?

I’m excited about this release because of what it means for the support millions of customers will receive. I’m also excited by an inclusive approach to AI that rewards expert users when they train AI instead of cutting them out of the loop. As AI becomes more readily adopted, we are moving forward with an expert-in-the-loop system that is critical to making AI and automation work in fast moving markets. I’m excited to couple that with a system that rewards the value of knowledge, and creates opportunity for experts in an AI era.

We’ll be going on the road over the next several weeks to demo the platform and introduce our new solutions. If you’re an existing customer and would like a tour, please contact success@directly.com. If you’re interested in the platform but aren’t yet working with us, please contact sales@directly.com, or drop me a line.

It’s an amazing time to work in CX and customer service, the most important moment I’ve seen since 1995. AI & automation are changing our understanding of what’s possible, and the customer service teams that can harness its power will play an increasingly important role in the customer journey. We’re excited to help you get there.