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A Reimagined Customer Experience With an AI-Powered Virtual Assistant

In a day and age where instant gratification has become an expectation, consumers demand responses to their questions and concerns quickly, if not immediately, and businesses know that excellent customer service is vital to their long-term success. Luckily, technology is evolving with the times, and the digital revolution and AI are helping to completely reimagine call centers.

Camping World, the number one retailer of recreational vehicles (RVs) globally, understands that providing exceptional customer service is vital to remaining ahead of its competition. The business relies heavily on its contact centers to deliver unmatched customer service, but following the COVID-19 pandemic, a surge in customers revealed some issues in its existing infrastructure. As the volume and traffic increased, gaps within agent management and response times became more prominent.

“We are a unique business where we serve three very distinct sets of customers who are into the RV lifestyle. There’s the retail side, financial services like insurance or goods, and the dealership side,” said Saurabh Shah, chief digital officer and chief information officer at Camping World.

Shah also explains that pulling agents from one area of the business and placing them in another takes training, and Camping World didn’t have the time to conduct such training before the seasonal surge came — especially during the pandemic labor shortage. Not having a 24×7 call center was a longstanding issue even in the off-season. When customers could not reach a human agent, their questions and queries either went unnoticed, were pushed off until the next day when a representative could respond, or were accidentally dropped entirely. That left Camping World’s sales team with no visibility into the number of leads accumulated in the off-hours.

“Our response times were concerning. Customers were waiting a long time, which was tied to a couple of things,” said Brenda Wintrow, senior…

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