Evaluating Vendors for AI in CX

How vendors are incorporating AI into their offerings

Generative AI models like ChatGPT and GPT-4 have emerged as game-changers, offering capabilities that range from natural language processing to complex data analytics. In the realm of CX, vendors are leveraging these advancements to provide:

  • Predictive Customer Insights: Using AI to analyze customer data and predict future behaviors, enabling businesses to proactively address potential issues. 
  • Automated Customer Support: Chatbots and virtual assistants, powered by AI models, offer immediate responses to customer queries, enhancing the overall customer experience. 
  • Personalized Experiences: AI-driven recommendation systems, akin to those used by Netflix or Amazon, curate personalized experiences for users based on their past interactions and preferences. 

What qualifications to look for in vendors

When seeking an AI vendor for CX, it's crucial to ensure they maintain high standards of security, compliance, and efficacy. Some of the key qualifications to consider include:

  • SOC 2 Compliance: A SOC 2 report evaluates a vendor's information systems in terms of security, availability, processing integrity, confidentiality, and privacy. It's a gold standard in assuring that a vendor follows strict information security policies and procedures.
  • Track Record: Consider vendors who have a proven history of successful AI implementations, particularly in the CX domain.
  • Transparency: Vendors should be transparent about their AI models, including their training data, algorithms, and potential biases.

These steps can help you evaluate AI for your business:

  • Understand the underlying AI model: AI can be a powerful tool for your business; recognizing what model is processing your data will help inform your risk and reward analysis. 
  • Assess the data you plan to input into the model: If the only data involved is public-facing marketing content, you’ll likely analyze the risks differently than if the AI integrates with your internal HR systems or your customers’ data. 
  • Inquire about the AI provider’s data training practices: Will your data be de-identified and stripped of confidential, personal, and sensitive information before it’s used to train the model? Is your data aggregated and anonymized with other similar data sets? These are important protections you may want to consider. 
  • Analyze the information security framework and practices of your chosen vendor: A strong security profile is a necessary precaution in today’s data privacy landscape.
  • Determine whether your chosen vendor is using an internal AI model or integrating a third-party AI model: If a third-party model is being used, be sure to evaluate their policies and security profile as well.

What questions to ask vendors 

Engaging with potential AI vendors requires a structured approach. To help you identify the right AI vendor, we've curated a list of essential questions. These queries touch upon crucial areas, from compliance standards to risk management practices, providing a comprehensive framework for vendor evaluation. 

As you navigate the AI vendor landscape, use this questionnaire as a guide. Copy, customize, and send it to your vendor to make an informed and confident decision.