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Virtual Agent Support

Virtual agent (sometimes called an intelligent virtual agent (IVA), virtual rep or chatbot) is a software program that uses scripted rules and, increasingly, artificial intelligence applications to provide automated service or guidance to humans.

Virtual agents are most commonly used by organizations in their customer service functions to answer routine customer queries, fulfil standard requests and/or handle simple problems. For example, virtual agents are often used for initial customer interactions with call centres or click-to-chat features on websites.

How virtual agents work ?

Virtual agent technologies initially emerged in the first decade of the 2000s. At the most basic level, virtual agent technologies work on a pre-programmed scripted model.

Organizations could create virtual agents that were scripted to respond in specific ways to specific human requests. Organizations generally identified the particular workflows that would be handled by the virtual agents, mapping out what a virtual agent should do based on each specific request or inquiry made by a person. Organizations then created the scripts to have the agent respond as needed to each request, which the agent could identify by predetermined keywords that had been programmed into the platform. In other words, the virtual agent would identify the keywords and respond with the scripted response that in its computerized analysis best matches the keywords.

As such, these virtual agents could handle routine tasks where an inquiry or request could be met with a predictable response. Organizations programmed their virtual agents to turn over the customer interaction to human agents when requests hit a certain point in the workflow or when the inquires digressed from the script.

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