A sea change, and thinking broadly about next-gen AI

In part one of this series, we laid out how we’ll help cut through the noise around next-gen AI over a series of upcoming posts. 

Like many of you, Thrio is excited about the promise of this wave of next-generation AI development. The pace of progress is remarkable, to say the least. In the customer care and contact center space, we see tremendous promise in applying artificial intelligence. And as we’ll discuss in later posts in this series, we’ve already rolled out powerful AI capabilities to Thrio’s customers and partners. 

OpenAI’s ChatGPT product has captured significant media attention and public awareness. In some cases, people have even used “ChatGPT” as a synonym for all generative AI capabilities. And as often happens with big leaps in technology, many in the broader public and even the CX space seem to regard ChatGPT as the answer to all their challenges. It is undoubtedly exciting to see new technologies appear that we can use to imagine better ways of doing business, better customer service, easier workloads, and lower costs. 

At the same time, it’s worth clarifying some terminology and making clear what the bigger picture is with regard to AI in customer experience and contact center applications. As we mentioned, the Thrio team has been closely following these new developments in AI platforms for several years. We’ve observed that while the “large language models” (LLMs) that drive ChatGPT and other platforms are impressive, they are only one part of a larger revolution for AI in the CX and contact center space. With that in mind, we’re proposing that we refer to this larger series of new capabilities as “next generation AI.” We might even abbreviate it as next-gen AI. 

The reason for this is simple. ChatGPT and other “generative” AI engines are focused on generating text, as their names would imply. While that is exciting and impressive, there are so many other domains in the CX space that are ripe for transformation via AI. As an example, AI-powered knowledge base engines that can reduce an agent’s workload are not generative AI per se, but rather part of this larger AI sea change. We hope this naming convention we’ll use will also help you think broadly about the possibilities for how AI can transform sales and service for businesses of all sizes. 

In our next post, we’ll look at both some of the specific, exciting areas to apply next-gen AI in the contact center, as well as examine some of the risks and pitfalls associated with these technologies. As always, our goal is to be a source of trusted information for you on these topics and others. If you have specific topics you’d like us to cover within the AI domain, please let a member of our team know– we’d love to hear from you. 

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