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The Human-AI CX Partnership

Delivering Amazing Customer Experiences through Seamless Self-Service and Human Interactions

Shep Hyken interviews Declan Ivory, Vice President of Customer Support at Intercom, dedicated to applying digital technologies to empower customer support teams. He discusses the technology available to drive meaningful change and innovation for customer experience.

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Top Takeaways:

  • Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) bring significant innovations that can truly transform customer service and experience. We now have technology that companies can apply quickly and cost-effectively to deliver the transformational experience customers have expected from the support industry for a long time.
  • Technology can now deliver a conversational feel to the customer’s interaction with a chatbot. Customer information is now integrated, so chatbots have the same access as human support agents. And often, they can better understand the context of what the customer is contacting them about.
  • Transitioning from automated to human support needs to be seamless. The customer should have to repeat everything they just said. This personalization and convenience make the customer feel valued throughout the interaction.
  • Most customer support experiences are reactive. Support agents usually respond to the customer’s issues or questions. However, customer expectations have evolved so that a compelling experience is one where customer support doesn’t wait for something to go wrong; they can predict an issue before it happens and proactively start the conversation with the customer to solve the problem before the customer ever knows about it.
  • An omnichannel experience is about enabling the customer to engage with you on any channel that makes sense to them. The important thing about this experience is meeting them where they are and demonstrating that you value and understand the customer in every channel they use.
  • Plus, Shep and Declan discuss how technology has evolved in the customer support world- from clumsy and clunky to a seamless experience. Tune in!


“The future is automation and human support. You need the knowledge and understanding that a human support agent brings to handle complex issues. And, you want self-service to be available to quickly handle the more simple transactions.”

“Customer expectations in terms of what they want from a support solution are increasing. They expect companies to solve issues even before they happen.”

“If you are thinking applying AI (Artificial Intelligence) and ML (Machine Learning) to the customer experience, now is the time. Not thinking about how you’re applying these technologies from a support perspective, you’re missing out on a real opportunity.”


Declan Ivory is Intercom’s Vice President of Customer Support. He is an experienced senior leader with a passion for building and developing high-performing teams and applying digital technologies to support organizations.

Shep Hyken is a customer service and experience expert, New York Times bestselling author, award-winning keynote speaker, and host of Amazing Business Radio.

This episode of Amazing Business Radio with Shep Hyken answers the following questions and more:

  1. How can artificial intelligence improve customer service and experience (CX)?
  2. Will AI replace human customer service?
  3. What is an omnichannel customer experience?
  4. What is the difference between proactive and reactive customer service?
  5. What are the benefits of AI to customer support teams?

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