This is a great piece of journalism, nicely enhanced with sound files and video.
“In the Kombea world,” Coombs told me, “if someone were to say, ‘Am I talking to a robot?’ the agent has the ability, either with a pre-recorded message or their live voice, to say, ‘You are talking to a live person, but to ensure the information is accurate, I’m using pre-recorded audio messages.'”
“I don’t know if you know anything about Six Sigma,” Coombs asked rhetorically. “But a human being is at best a 2-sigma machine. Which means that humans get things right 92 to 93 percent of the time. If you think about that, if I take a 100 calls, that means that 7 to 8 of those callers don’t get the right information, not because I’m trying to mislead but because I got in a fight with my wife or I hate this call center job or I’m tired and I made a mistake.”