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Critical as they are to a contact center operation and, ultimately, an organization’s ability to deliver on customer experience goals, supervisors haven’t necessarily received the same level of attention as agents when it comes to the work experience. But that’s starting to change.

Just as artificial intelligence (AI) has been put to use to improve the agent experience, so too is it starting to be applied to the supervisor experience. Improve the supervisor experience, and operational efficiency is sure to follow—or vice versa.

Agent assist software and supervisor assist software act in much the same way. They leverage different types of AI to improve the way agents and supervisors, respectively, do their jobs. For agents, it’s about providing in-the-moment advice, information, and context to deliver the best possible service. For supervisors, it’s also about providing context, along with analytics to improve agent performance and contact center efficiency.

Like agents, supervisors receive this information in screen pops, but also in reports, charts, and tables (which, one day, AI ought to make less burdensome to assess). The AI works with workforce optimization/workforce engagement management applications, such as quality management and workforce management, to help analyze agent performance on calls and to improve the accuracy of schedule and capacity management requirements.

As detailed in a recent MetriNote, supervisor assistance was one of the AI-related themes coming from customer experience (CX) providers at Enterprise Connect 2024. AWS and NICE are two examples of CX providers that introduced new supervisor assistance capabilities.

AWS announced that its contact center analytics and quality management offering, Amazon Connect Contact Lens, now supports generative AI-powered post-contact summaries for supervisors to use while reviewing interactions and assessing agent performance, and that the software will now automatically fill in and submit agent evaluations using insights from conversational analytics. And NICE introduced a version of Enlighten Copilot focusing on the operational needs of supervisors. It delivers real-time and historical information on agent performance, provides guidance on coaching requirements, and generates contextual alerts for real-time intervention.

These sorts of capabilities should resonate with CX leaders, based on findings in our global AI for Business Success 2024-25 research study with 697 companies. In the study, 43.9% of companies said they would see some value in improved supervisor functions, while 31.6% said there is significant need to improve supervisor capabilities.

The use of AI is already proving its value on supervisor time for the most successful companies in the study, as measured across a variety of metrics. Using AI helped companies reduce the amount of time supervisors spend on scheduling and capacity planning by 119 minutes. Although this isn’t exclusively attributable to supervisor assistance, but rather AI in general, it points to the potential gains we can expect to see when AI is applied to the supervisor role.

It’s a win-win for improved supervisor experience and operational efficiencies.