A report by McKinsey states that over 71% of consumers expect a personalized solution. Adding on, about 76% of customers get disappointed when these are not fulfilled. Today, we’ll be interviewing someone who is at the helm of this solution.
In this interview, we’ll be talking to Aditya Garg who has played a pivotal role in launching the Genesys Cloud platform in India. He has collaborated with major institutions and organizations into fusion technology and has helped provide unparalleled customer experience.
Aditya has had a remarkable career in terms of providing consulting practice for Genesys India. Also, he has dedicated his life to customer experience, AI, machine learning, and cloud computing. Therefore without further await, let’s start with this interview.
As a solution consultant, I lead the solution consultancy practice for Genesys in India and the neighboring countries. My role is to help organizations achieve customer experience objectives. So basically, I try to support these organizations in improving their customer interactions and helping these interactions to become more seamless.
It’s been five years plus for me in this organization. The great part is that the leadership team at Genesys is equally focused on customers and employees. The result of this 9 years trade is that we have been leaders in the magic quadrant. Also, for 9 years, we have been certified as a great place to work. Therefore, there isn’t any better place than here for me, and I’m thoroughly enjoying myself.
A.2 Genesys India has been one of the fastest-growing cloud regions in the APAC region since its launch in 2021. Our revenues have reached triple-digit figures in the financial year 2023. Therefore, you can imagine the updates we’ve had with cloud services in India. However, it has happened because of multiple factors.
Firstly, we have to understand that Indian organizations are going through a massive transformation themselves. Also, as a country, our cloud adoption rate is much higher than any other country in the world right now.
We are also witnessing the same in the industries we are working with, whether they are BPOs, Ecom Players, Fintech, or the health techs of the country. We have been able to support each other. We now have diverse customers, including top BPOs, top Ecom players, large Fintech, and large edutech organizations that subscribe to these services.
To further support and strengthen this adoption, we are strengthening our partner ecosystem, contributing to almost 85% of total cloud revenues in India.
Regarding the entire business in India, Genesys is the only solution provider with an enterprise-grade native cloud in a country set up for CSAT solutions.
Genesys has been the only one. When we launched in the financial year 2023, we made it the first custom global customer experience platform to provide to Indian customers. The scalability, reliability, and flexibility weren’t available earlier. So that is where we are currently the only one in the space to provide all this in the country.
It has impacted me very positively. AI has been adopted and consumed by the contact center industry. In a recent study conducted by the adopters of artificial intelligence, we have witnessed that most of those who have adopted artificial intelligence are seeing increased customer satisfaction. They’re seeing an increase in customer loyalty, first-call resolution, etc.
To further elaborate, the first call resolution is the number of times a customer calls you for the first time, and his problem gets resolved in the first call itself.
This is a very important parameter for customer satisfaction, and those who have adopted AI are seeing a tremendous increase in those numbers. If you start talking about productivity, they see higher agent productivity and lower iterations of the agent turnovers. Also, the revenue per agent has been growing. So, this is what the industry witnessed when we started.
When we further investigated, we witnessed AI being adopted at the customer experience level, on the customer side, and for the agent experience.
Now, agents are primarily used to identify the user and the intent behind their need to call or reach us for self-service automation. We would provide solutions such as chatbots, bot sentiment analysis, etc. This is the agent side.
On the contrary, in any interaction, there’s always a consumer that needs to be supported by an agent. Now, agent experience is equally important. We have been working to provide solutions based on artificial intelligence. Solutions that improve the process for workforce enablement and management allowing for better agent assistance, quality assurance, analytics forecasting, and scheduling.
This is to schedule and forecast the right number of agents and people required to attend or manage those calls. Again, all this is an AI-powered system. Therefore, we are working on both sides of the paradigm to support this. Furthermore, with Genesys Cloud, we aim to combine conversational AI, agent assistance, predictive routing, and engagement into a single solution.
We are not talking about different disparate solutions coming together, but a single solution is what we are looking at. Now, the buzzword is generative AI. It is so popular that if we press start the search for AI, the first response would be for generative AI solutions.
With that coming in, it has opened up doors to achieve a lot more, and this is where Genesys is focusing on working. We further improve language processing and analytics by working with organizations to improve their experiences through smart automation, personalization, and optimization.
We started doing that very early on. AI is a buzzword now, but more than two decades ago, Genesys supported automatic speech recognition systems. It meant that you could converse with another system.
This was an earlier part of conversational AI. We’ve had customers who have utilized these technologies almost from the beginning of my career. However, Genesys never viewed AI as an add-on. It was a central piece of our offering, which meant we built solutions around AI for consumers for multiple use cases.
Furthermore, moving away from conventional systems, which were conversational bots, we’ve tried to look at all places where we can positively utilize artificial intelligence in areas where it wasn’t possible to achieve those objectives.
We’ve been able to build solutions on various aspects of contact center operations. We have built solutions like predictive routing and predictive engagement. We have utilized AI for quality assurance, quality management, workforce engagement management, etc.
Again, we have been building solutions on top of the technology of generative AI, which would have been possible with the latest conventional AI technologies.
It may have been a great agent interaction summarization tool. What usually happens is that once the call is finished or the interaction ends, the agent needs to summarize the interaction for recording purposes. After the interaction, they would write notes on what transpired between the customer and the agent. They would put those notes and use generative AI to consume, listen to, or read what is being exchanged in real-time and build a summary note. This goes as records, which was only possible using a technology like generative AI.
Despite the advancement of artificial intelligence, I don’t believe these systems can replace human emotional intelligence. AI technologies should be considered an ally rather than a threat.
I’d elaborate on this using the example of agents. When somebody calls in with a query, the agent has to look through various information. This is to come up with the right responses. Usually, this information is disparate. It could be based on knowledge articles in the database or some other data point.
It is difficult for an agent to respond at the right time, keeping an average handling time spent on the interaction and trying to minimize the response time correctly for the customer. It is important because things like NPS, AHT, etc, get impacted. These guys are struggling with all that.
Now, with artificial intelligence systems such as agent assist, which would hear their queries in real-time. This helps locate the right information to be shared with the customer. The agent can choose the right information and decide whether to share it.
These technologies make it so simple and easy for the agent. There are parameters such as inherence, and they must know if there are any gaps in their delivery. How can they improve on it with such a large workforce? A supervisor can't manage and guide them every time. This impacts their performances.
Imagine an AI-based coaching system that understands the gaps and challenges and provides guidance on improving them. Therefore, an AI-based coaching system can give you real-time insights and guide you further. The biggest challenge for the agents is having the same queries being answered, which they answer all the time. This is probably just a database search or a quick one they must do.
It doesn’t require human intelligence as they are pushed into mundane responses. With a simple automation system that could take away these entire tasks, these agents would simply have those queries that merit their intelligence. There’s a need for empathy, which artificial intelligence systems cannot deliver to understand.
Today, we discussed virtual offices, working from home, etc. It gets pretty mundane, you know, to work in these environments and imagine an element of a game in its gamification where you want to earn badges for it.
You’ve got tasks you finish in a day, and you have a leadership board coming on you. Imagine if that entire work turns into a game where whatever you’re doing, you are earning points for it. Suddenly, it becomes fun. The agents will get motivated, which we aim to achieve with the AI system. Whatever we talk about is something we are already supporting on our platform, which is a much more engaging place for our agents. They say technology is a great servant but not a good master.
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We have been too customer-centric and focused on solving customer problems. This is the general focus of the organization and the industry that tries to fix the customer problem. However, now is when I expect the industry to start looking at the EX part, i.e., the employee experience.
I say this because the line between customer experience and employee experience will continue to blur. There will be a convergence of these two aspects. It is important, and many organizations are realizing that.
Without a great customer and employee experience, delivering a good customer experience will be hard. So where there is automation, the customers are getting addressed for their requirements, and for the cases where they need a human touch, they are coming to an agent.
Now, in such a system, both the customer and the employees are in a win-win situation because an employee is much more focused on answering the query that he or she knows. So suddenly, if you see that the entire differentiation will move away, that will be the next frontier for the organizations to blur.
The second one is very close to my heart, which Genesys propagates greatly: the ethical and efficient use of generative AI solutions. Now, we’ve been talking a lot about generative AI. We’ve also seen that the current form of generative AI is also plagued with biases. If you remember, there have been enough and more examples where there are a lot.
I’ll not name the image-building solution that created certain biases when they were looking to develop certain professions. Similarly, inherent biases get magnified with the use of generative AI that everybody understands, which we’ve got to be wary of, especially for customer experience. It is because of customer experience, there is an expectation of the customers that has to be provided for, and the biases or the training if it is incorrect, if the privacy is not respected, there could be major challenges. This is why one should look at ethically utilizing generative AI and how to use AI solutions efficiently.
We need to be careful about how we will consume this technology. I mean, AI is a tool. We must understand that. Also, the benefit of the result of this tool is in the hands that bear it. This is why we consume this technology and how it has become extremely important. When it comes to the principles of privacy, ethical usage, and transparency, this is what Genesys has been propagating.
India is undoubtedly the outsourcing capital of the world. We have consistently been sought after for providing top-notch services, and it's not solely because we offer cost-effective solutions. We also boast a vast pool of highly educated and technically qualified professionals. This factor is a driving force behind this trend.
Let me share some key statistics with you if we consider 2024 and beyond. Currently, the total installed base or the number of agents in the country exceeds 1.2 million. Of these, 55% are in Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) roles, while the rest are part of captive organizations that directly serve end customers.
Here's the interesting part: 90% of the total installed base relies on on-premise, essentially legacy systems. Dealing with legacy systems comes with inherent challenges. Combining this with the earlier discussion about Cloud adoption in the country. We're witnessing a significant shift towards cloud adoption due to its scalability, flexibility, and security advantages. Consequently, a large portion of this installed base is expected to migrate to the Cloud.
Around 120,000 new agents or businesses are regularly added to the landscape. Considering all these factors together, it's evident that India presents a promising market in which to operate. We are optimistic about the industry's future and foresee this trend continuing for the foreseeable future.
Furthermore, the government has been extremely supportive of the outsourcing industry. They have offered tax benefits, and during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond, they have extended support for work-from-home agents. This support has come at a crucial time and will likely contribute to the industry's continued growth.
We must understand that there's a new generation of customers and employees with high organizational expectations. We've recognized this significant shift in customer and employee expectations and embarked on a vision to instill empathy in every interaction.
Our goal is to orchestrate personalized and end-to-end experiences within and beyond the contact center, leading us to pioneer what we call 'Experience as a Service.
To break it down further, consider that as a customer, you have multiple channels to reach your service provider or the brand you engage with. Similarly, you have various options for service providers and brands. What ultimately defines your choice is the experience associated with a brand or service provider.
As a customer, you expect a consistent and excellent experience, regardless of whether you're using WhatsApp, making a phone call, sending an email, or using a chat service. The objective is to ensure that when you engage with us, you are recognized as an individual, your needs are understood, and your queries are promptly resolved.
However, achieving this across multiple channels and a diverse customer base is complex. Organizations must understand, predict, and listen to customers to consistently deliver exceptional service. This challenge prompted us to embark on a journey to orchestrate the entire customer experience, from start to finish, with agents playing a crucial role in this process. Every aspect of our solution is dedicated to driving empathy in every interaction and experience.
Our goal is to eliminate the gaps in delivering a great experience, whether it's through a phone call, chat, or WhatsApp. We aim to provide a unified and outstanding experience across all these channels. Customers' experience should be exceptional when interacting with us, and we strive to deliver empathy at scale. This is the essence of our vision and mission under 'Experience as a Service,' and we are committed to fulfilling it.
In 2019, our CEO, Mr. Tony B, shared this vision with us, and there might have been doubts at the time. However, looking at the ongoing transformation, it's evident that we were ahead of the curve. Today, everyone talks about the 'experience economy,' but we already addressed this trend in 2019. We've worked diligently to build solutions that cater to these evolving industry requirements.
When considering the solutions developed at Genesis, it's important to understand that in the context of a contact center, it's not just one product or solution but a combination of various solutions. These include basic contact solutions, recording, quality management, workforce management, analytics, etc.
Typically, a contact center is a mix of these diverse solutions. However, Genesis offers an all-in-one comprehensive platform that combines all these aspects of contact center operations under one umbrella, making it a unique offering.
When building these solutions, our primary goal is to create personalized communications and extract meaningful insights from these interactions to drive continuous improvement. This dedication to our mission and vision has placed us as leaders in the Magic Quadrant for nine consecutive times. This speaks to our commitment and success in the market.
To further enhance our customer service and support capabilities, we recently partnered with Salesforce. Together, we launched CX Cloud by Genesys and Salesforce, a unified, artificial intelligence-powered customer experience and customer relationship management solution.
What sets our solution apart is that it is born in the cloud, unlike conventional on-premise systems hosted in a cloud setup. Being natively built for the cloud ensures inherent flexibility, scalability, and security, which are the three key pillars of Genesis Cloud.
Our all-in-one platform covers every aspect of contact center operations and is powered by AI. We have our own AI engines and integrate with strategic partners from the artificial intelligence industry.
Over time, we have earned the trust of our customers. We currently support approximately 45 million interactions daily, serving more than 5,000 customers worldwide. We have over a million global users on the Genesis Cloud platform, demonstrating our customers' trust and confidence in us.
I have one piece of advice for all you entrepreneurs and conscious individuals out there: keep your goals crystal clear. Whether you're running a customer-centric organization or any other venture, it's essential to be customer-focused while giving due attention to your employees. Remember, without happy employees, delivering great customer service becomes a challenge. That's the first point.
Secondly, let's talk about artificial intelligence (AI). It undoubtedly holds immense potential, with numerous use cases previously unthinkable. AI can remove the need to remember mundane details and simplify many tasks. However, it's crucial to understand that AI cannot replace human intelligence—the power to create. AI can replicate what already exists but not create entirely new things. So, I advise respecting and harnessing both human and artificial intelligence wisely. In essence, empathy is the key. Empathy is paramount in every aspect of what we do.
Want to follow the journey of Aditya Garg, connect with him using his LinkedIn. To get notified of all the latest interviews, subscribe to MobileAppDaily. To read our existing MobileAppDaily interviews, click on the link provided.
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