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Today, customers will (of course) still pick up the phone to get in touch, but this will be just one of the many channels they use - depending on their situation and preferences. Businesses must offer not only a full range of communications channels – they’re also expected to provide seamless service across all channels. So, when a customer sends a WhatsApp or SMS to ask a question, they’ll want the same depth of assistance (and range of options) as if they made a voice call or email. While some industries are far more advanced in this journey, we’re all heading in the same direction and must master this skill to keep the customer’s trust and loyalty.

Thankfully, it’s now possible to support this high level of service entirely within Microsoft Teams. By using, you can instantly uplift Teams’ native capabilities and turn it into a powerful omnichannel contact center solution. Even better - by combining this Microsoft Certified solution with its built-in AI integration you can harness the power of Microsoft Copilot to create incredible efficiencies and entirely new services - generating added value for your business.

How Teams keeps it all together

One of the greatest advantages of the Microsoft ecosystem is its reliability and security. By using Microsoft Teams, businesses can consolidate all their communications – internal and external – within this robust framework. This ensures that compliance and security requirements are easily met, and that all communications, resources, and processes are conveniently accessed from a single interface. By keeping everything within Teams, time and money is saved with each interaction or task because agents don’t need to switch between screens or interfaces. It’s important this advantage isn’t lost when adopting AI for your contact center, so it must operate perfectly with Teams.

For this reason, Microsoft Copilot is the perfect AI assistant for driving greater productivity and better customer experiences with your contact center. As a Microsoft Certified CCaaS solution, works seamlessly with the Microsoft ecosystem. As well as working harmoniously with Microsoft software like Teams and Copilot, it can integrate with your CRMs, ERPs, and other business resources. This way, your contact center is fully connected to your business in the most secure and stable way.

By connecting your Teams contact center to Microsoft’s Copilot AI assistant, your omnichannel contact center can make use of the efficiencies of AI in a fully certified and secure environment. This setup generates strong business value from autonomous query resolution and by helping your agents do their job at the highest possible level. These efficiencies are stacked on top of the gains already made by using to streamline workflows and integrate all customer service and sales processes – all within the intuitive and familiar Teams client.

What can Copilot AI do in a Teams contact center?

There are several different types of AI in circulation today, ranging from machine learning algorithms to AI language models like ChatGPT. In many respects, language models are the most familiar and offer the most immediate value for customer contact scenarios. People are already accustomed to using these tools in the form of voice assistants like Siri, Google Assistant, and Alexa. Transformer-type language models like ChatGPT have gone one step further by being able to generate a wider variety of ‘appropriate’ responses based on user inputs and predefined resources. While this can be applied to a variety of business situations, it’s especially valuable in customer contact.

By working closely with ChatGPT creators OpenAI, Microsoft has been able to develop a powerful and capable AI assistant that works with almost every application in MS 365: Copilot. When used in a contact center, AI can perform several important functions with super-high efficiency, including: Chatbots – As well as simple Q and A bots, generative AI like Copilot can support highly advanced chatbot functionality across multiple channels simultaneously. This means that AI can generate correct responses and even take certain actions (if predefined), using the data and resources you provide. The vast majority of queries can be resolved without any human intervention.

Virtual Assistant

Your agents can perform their work better and attain higher job satisfaction with the help of a Copilot AI virtual assistant that finds all the right data and suggests appropriate actions. AI assistants can ensure the CRM is updated with each interaction, and reduce the stress of this challenging role.

Content Generation

You can create self-help guides, FAQs, and even individual messages for each customer, using generative AI. This content uses your pre-existing resources to generate content instantly, on demand.

Language Translation

It’s now easier than ever to expand into new regions thanks to the translation capabilities of AI. You can use the AI to help customers autonomously, and/or use it as a translation engine to facilitate a real-time conversation between your agents and customers around the world. These conversations can use voice or text, and can use any channel or multiple channels in combination. This skill can unlock future cross-border growth, at a very low effort threshold.

Sales Opportunities

AI can use certain query types or events as a trigger for sales processes. If a customer shows interest in a particular service or product, for example, the Copilot AI can offer the customer a special deal, a brochure, or send a follow-up message a few days later (with a ‘buy now’ link), if appropriate. Because you can customize this with your own flows using the flow editor, anything is possible, and you have total control.

How your customers benefit from AI-powered contact

The benefits of an AI-powered omnichannel contact center are not just for your business – there are significant advantages for your customers too.

1. Always available, everywhere

Thanks to the always-on support your AI capabilities can offer, customers can get answers whenever they need them. You can offer 24/7 support, 365 days a year – and in any language. This means your global customers can get great support in their own language regardless of whichever time zone they’re located in.

2. Faster response time

Your increased responsiveness means that your customers benefit from rapid query resolution, as the AI language model can handle far more enquiries entirely on its own. Waiting times can drop to practically zero, and thousands of customers can be helped simultaneously with the same scalable tool for all those common, repetitive queries. This significantly reduces the burden on agents too, who can deal with more meaningful enquiries.

3. Better, data-enriched service

If a human agent needs to get involved, the AI assistant can escalate the query by forwarding the call/message/chat to the right agent using the hybrid queue feature, along with all the information needed to resolve it. The CRM can be automatically updated too, with a summary of the query (and the action taken), added to the timeline. As a result, you get better and more consistent data without burdening agents.

There are some special considerations for using Microsoft Copilot or other AI in your Teams contact center:

  • Ensure you’re following the legal requirements for your jurisdiction  
  • Keep your data flows secure and prevent the leak of confidential/personal data.
  • Provide a way for customers to opt-out of AI-powered interactions, and escalate to human agents when needed.
  • Test and refine your AI continuously to ensure answers are correct and reflect your brand. Limit the AI to data and resources that you define, to ensure accuracy.
  • Ensure there is human oversight when it’s needed, for example when certain actions are taken.
  • Use a harmonious system to avoid integration issues and to maintain the secure Teams framework.

Copilot and the synergy of AI and omnichannel contact in Teams

An AI tool such as Microsoft Copilot can generate a lot of efficiency savings and value in a Teams contact center, and this is further magnified in omnichannel contact scenarios. The platform already empowers businesses to create automated flows and event-driven actions, and these can become even more sophisticated when AI is brought into the picture. Let’s imagine the customer makes a voice call because they want to know when their next delivery is due. In this case, the AI assistant can identify who’s calling, check their order history, confirm which order they want to know about, and then tell them when it is scheduled.

Then, the AI can offer to send a WhatsApp message with a summary of the order, and even a link to the tracking information (as soon as it’s shipped). This can also apply to upselling and cross-selling opportunities - and it can all happen automatically. No matter which channels the customer uses to get in touch, the AI will recognize who the customer is, relate the query to the context of previous calls/messages, and update the CRM accordingly. Because you can instruct the AI to log all contact data in a consistent way, you get more accurate insights and a CRM timeline that’s always up to date. By using more consistent and complete data, you can offer consistent service across all channels, while generating more accurate forecasting and other insights.

Better, more efficient customer contact with Microsoft Teams and Copilot

Today’s customer is omnichannel, and this means that you need to use a single source of truth that keeps all interactions anchored to your Teams-based business. Let’s face it, it’s easy to lose context when a customer picks up the phone to ask one question, and then sends a WhatsApp to ask something else – but you can keep the ‘big picture' by using Teams as a single point of access. With your contact center functionality, CRM, AI tooling, and business processes all wrapped into one secure package, the challenge of omnichannel contact is easily managed and it can deliver more business value too.

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