Blue Prism sees the new offering as filling a major void in an important market, and as providing a good opportunity for channel partners who work the contact centre market.
Today, robotics Process Automation [RPA] vendor Blue Prism is announcing the availability of Blue Prism Service Assist, a new digital workforce solution designed for the specific needs of the contact center ecosystem.
Growing volume and complexity combined with issues like legacy systems and the need to support home-based agents have made the contact centre an obvious target that can be assisted with automation.
“B2B and B2C contact centres are large enterprise concerns which have large numbers of interactions and agents and significant complexity in dealing with transactions,” said Bruce Mazza, Global VP, Technology Alliance Program, at Blue Prism. “The service reps often spend more time interacting with complexities of systems than they do taking calls. Automation in this environment not only saves costs by allowing agents to take more calls, but can make a direct impact on the customer experience and customer satisfaction.”
Service Assist uses a centralized digital workforce that processes information to provide a unified 360 degree view of all customer interactions to the contact center agents. A dynamic attended automation GUI simplifies and guides the customer interaction tasks including searching databases, scheduling callbacks, and updating customer records, eliminating the need for the agent to do these tasks manually.
“It provides intelligent automation that allows for integration directly with the agent back and forth with the customers and across the contact center ecosystem,” Mazza added.
Blue Prism has not had a product specifically designed for this market before.
“Service Assist is based on our core product, but adds new capabilities and components for this distinct situation, with high numbers of agents and large numbers of calls,” Mazza said. “Some of our customers have been using Blue Prism for unattended automation, to take some back office tasks and automate those. But Service Assist provides a direct integration between the digital workforce, human agents and customers.”
The RPA space is dominated by three significant players – Blue Prism, UiPath and Automation Anywhere – but Mazza said that Blue Prism’s technology here is different from their rivals.
“Our two big competitors have attended desktop automation, where they put robots on desktops which can interface with contact agents,” he stated. “But that’s different from our architecture. We can actually have a set of digital workers speed the response to the agent, which has a measurable impact on call resolution times. They have one robot on each desktop, which isn’t as scalable.
“In addition, our orchestration can orchestrate across a 360 degree view and see all of those customer interactions,” Mazza continued. “That’s hard to do with a bot on every desktop approach. Our approach is also highly secure because a bot doesn’t share a keyboard with an agent.”
Service Assist is designed to be highly complementary with the platform management companies.
“We are integration partners with ServiceNow and Salesforce and lots of others,” Mazza said. “Our technology integrates directly with them and adds the orchestration layer to a digital workforce. We have intended this to be highly complementary with customers’ existing investments, while making interactions faster and allowing new interactions.”
Mazza expects that Service Assist will be a strong channel offering.
“Blue Prism has a robust partner ecosystem, and we have over 250 partners worldwide, including some of the large SIs and GSIs and regional resellers,” he said. “That channel is invited to sell and support and deliver this solution. We have qualifications for them around enablement and training. We are working with those partners here that have a strong Blue Prism practice and a history of delivering contact centre solutions.”