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Are your GenAI Aspirations D.O.A.? Without Billing Data, Probably "Yes"

Akil Chomoko

5 June 2024

Nearly two years after exploding onto the scene, generative AI remains as pervasive a topic as ever in global business and society. As enterprises continue to explore how best to deploy applications into various aspects of their business operations, it’s become clear that, for the moment, the area where GenAI can have the greatest potential impact on revenue and margins is within the customer care function.

But not without billing data!

Simply stated, any organization attempting to leverage GenAI to bolster customer experience and support without integrating rich, fulsome, real-time billing data is bound to fail. Not just fall short. Straight up fail.

Why? Because billing data delivers critical insights human customer care agents, LLM-powered chatbots, and virtual assistants all need to investigate invoices, provide answers, propose next best actions, and manage disputes quickly and during the first point of engagement. The powerful insights that can be gleaned from billing data are critical to the success of any GenAI-powered customer care solution, more so even than financial, operational, network, or any other organizational data source.

Industry analysts agree that anywhere from 40 to 60% of inbound inquiries to the customer service center are related to the invoice, overshadowing even issues like service outages. “Why is my bill so high?” is the most common question fielded by customer service agents, one that simply cannot be answered without visibility into billing data sources.

Enterprises that make billing data available to GenAI engines experience streamlined and automated customer interactions, reduced OPEX, increased revenue, and enhanced customer loyalty. Billing data makes it possible for typical inquiries to be resolved by GenAI in 75% less time, increasing trust, satisfaction, and retention among customers while improving productivity among employees, freeing agents to deal with more substantive and complex matters.

As GenAI capabilities evolve to enable unbounded customer interactions, moving beyond pre-defined prompts, the ability for GenAI applications to seamlessly connect to and extract meaningful billing data will only become more pronounced. Enterprises that own the data and the sensitive personal and financial information contained within will benefit to an even greater degree.

Across all industries and vertical markets, customer care related to billing is and will always be a critical function of any B2B or B2C enterprise. As a cost center, customer care accounts for at least 10% of operational expenditures (source: Arthur Little), so the benefits to the bottom line gained from AI automation are obvious and non-trivial. And it should go without saying that nothing contributes to customer satisfaction (hence better retention, NPS, upsell, etc.) more than customer care that is tailored, prompt, and accurate.

The value of billing data in GenAI use cases doesn’t stop at customer care.  Far from it, it’s simply that customer care is the obvious lowest hanging fruit for most enterprises.  But ask a chatbot to provide a quality response to a prompt from a regional LOB manager like “Which payment methods should I accept to best attract 25-35 year-olds in Brazil?”, or to a prompt from a product manager like “What is the optimal promotional structure to offer to my B2B customers to incentivize upsell of add-on products?”  Any response provided without the benefit of access to real-world billing data is sure to ring hollow, likely to be misleading or incomplete, and possibly a mere hallucination.

From those already leveraging GenAI to those just starting their journey, the market is replete with solutions that any organization can deploy today to begin enhancing customer experience, increasing revenue, and reducing costs using the combined power of billing data and GenAI.

Ready to learn more? Book a call with Aria today.

Akil Chomoko

VP Product Marketing, Aria Systems. Akil leads solution marketing at Aria, building go-to-market strategies and programs in key target industries. Akil has over 20 years of experience in the telecoms industry, serving most recently in senior product marketing and management positions at MDS Global, AsiaInfo and CSG (Intec & Volubill).

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