Blended AI: The Genesys Vision for AI in Customer Experience

Last week, Genesys held CX17 INDY, its first major event since completing its acquisition of Interactive Intelligence back in December. Held in Indianapolis, home of Interactive Intelligence, this event was an opportunity for Genesys to demonstrate its total support for all key Interactive Intelligence products, in particular PureCloud and PureConnect (formerly CIC).

CX17 INDY was also an opportunity for Genesys to demonstrate its vision for where CX is headed and they didn’t disappoint. We of course expected them to talk about AI, if only for the reason that it would be almost inconceivable not to talk about it. And talk about AI, they did. A lot.

First, they introduced Kate, which was described as “the personified AI ecosystem from Genesys”. It’s not entirely clear at this point what Kate really is beyond a marketing brand around everything AI at Genesys. When talking about Kate, Paul Segre specifically, and realistically, indicated that this was the beginning of a long, long AI journey, meaning that it will be a long time before AI-powered agents can fully replace human agents.

This set the stage for the introduction of what Genesys called “Blended AI”, which is meant as a combination of AI with the “human touch”. This may, for instance, mean using AI as an assistant to a live agent or, conversely, using agents to assist AI chatbots whenever they get stuck during a conversation.

I was actually quite happy to see this because it is in complete agreement with one of the key roles we, at Nu Echo, see for AI in CX: As a complement rather than a replacement to human intelligence and the “human touch”, either in the form of AI-assisted agents, or as agent-assisted AI.

Genesys also described their AI ecosystem as an open framework, providing APIs to enable third parties to “bring their own bot” or integrate the AI or NLP engine of their choice. Their claim that “bots developers shouldn’t have to know about contact centers” seemed an attempt at convincing bot developers to target customer experience bots on the Genesys platform. We’ll see about that; for many bots developers, seeing bots as part of an omnichannel customer experience may be a big stretch.

In any case, although much of Genesys’ AI message still remains a bit nebulous at this point, we fully expect things to become clearer in the coming months. Stay tuned!

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