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THE ROLE OF ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE ON STRATEGIC CUSTOMER SERVICE: A STUDY OF UNITED BANK FOR AFRICA (UBA)
By AYEWOH, PRINCE CHARLES – GC


ABSTRACT

The study examined the role of Artificial Intelligence in Strategic Customer Service, using the United Bank for Africa Plc (UBA PLC) as a study. The study adopted a survey design approach to collecting feedback, with the primary instrument of data collection being questionnaires. A total of 200 questionnaires were administered to UBA customers and 180 of the forms were filled and returned. Data analysis was carried out using the Chi-square Statistical method to test hypotheses at a 5% level of significance, and at specified degrees of freedom. This method was used to verify the degree of significance of the result of the findings, and it shows that artificial intelligence plays a significant role in Strategic Customer Service, and showing that the satisfaction derived from services rendered via human intelligence is equally proportional to the service derived from artificial intelligent solutions (Leo – case in point).

It is therefore proposed that the Management of banks must consider improvements to Strategic Customer Service through the effective application of Artificial Intelligence in customer experience and service support. These improvements to service strategy can be used to enhance prompt customer service delivery and provide support for service requests that can be resolved by a taught bot.

The concept of knowledge resident in any 21st century AI bot as seen in the advancements to UBA’s Leo, concentrate on mimicking human decision-making processes; which are a daily mental responsibility for the human Customer Service Agent. Therefore, the goal is a targeted drive at ensuring improvements are made to give Leo, knowledge necessary to deliver better service and possibly the ability to keenly meet the emotional demands, that are a pre-requisite for astounding service delivery.

Doing this, is to wholesomely develop a sound AI solution that meets the demands of the local banking industry in Nigeria, and UBA has achieved this by introducing the Leo handover process. The process allows humans take over from Leo when there are tasking questions or requests to which the AI bot is unable to respond. The opportunity this gives, is one that allows for information provided by the Agent to be archived and fed into the bot after a customer-human interaction. Thereafter, Leo is taught to respond in the same fashion the human has done to meet the service needs of the customer in the future.

Machine learning is the process applied to achieve this and now leads AI to uncharted territories of perfection – creating an ever more intelligent service delivery solution/application.

This research has shown that AI chatbots have improved customer service and customers are happier now than ever before. The introduction of LEO has increased customer comfort and confidence and the study recommends that the Management of banks should encourage the use of artificial intelligence in the delivery of customer service to customers. Furthermore, banks are to look to adequately complement the output of service delivery provided by humans in UBA and other banks in the country with an AI taught bot.

Conclusively, artificial intelligence is useful in improving customer satisfaction in banking and this study shows that the introduction of Leo has improved Customer Service in UBA and the combination of Leo and Human Intelligence will further improve the customer service experience in UBA Plc.

AYEWOH, PRINCE CHARLES – GC is a CSSM student @ STRATEGIC BUSINESS SCHOOL

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