Chatbots and Conversational AI
Daden have been developing chatbot systems and solutions since the mid 2000s. We have our own lightweight Discourse platform (based around the Artificial Intelligence Markup Language) for simpler and mobile bots, and use the Open-Source Chatscript engine for more complex bots. Our bots are typically developed as web services, so they can be implemented with a wide variety of front-ends (e.g. web, mobile, instant messaging platforms), and you can add text-to-speech or even speech-recognition if you wa t. A visual avatar is entirely optional.
Chatbots can be used in a wide variety of roles within an organisation. Our current interest is around internal uses (see below), but we have also used them in the past for more "traditional" uses such as customer service management. Get in touch if you would like to discuss how chatbots could help your business, and also read our White Papers on them.
STOP PRESS: David (our MD) has recently had a book on Virtual Humans published by Taylor & Francis (USA) in February. You can get more information from the CRC Press website. or from the book's website at www.virtualhumans.ai. The book is available from Amazon and all good academic bookshops!
The Roles that Chatbots can Play...
Imagine giving our employees 24/7 access to your HR department, a virtual personal assistant, careers advisor, and life coach. By combining practical day to day support to remove the "friction" in a job, with a coach focussed on wellbeing and longer term management you can help to get the best out of your staff, keep them motivated, and link them in to life-long learning and development. We are currently developing a prototype system as part of a project for Defence People, the "HR Department" of the Ministry of Defence as part of a Defence and Security Accelerator project. MOD are keen to see the technology used commercially as well, so if you think this could also help your organisation then do contact us.
Employees change roles and leave jobs on a fairly frequent basis, and many good people just retire. Whilst corporate knowledge management systems can be good a capturing the "facts" and long reports they are less good at capturing (and making available) the more subjective knowledge and opinion, and the vast amount of tacit knowledge that is locked away in people's heads. What if you could have every employee who's ever worked for you on speed-dial, just a quick Skype call to find out how they did something, or what they thought of Company A or Person B, or how well technology C worked. Such a system can even help the individual, providing a reflective view of themselves, and potentially even helping maintain memory as they get older.
We are already engaged on a research project in this area and if it's an area that is of interest to you as well then please get in touch.
Customer Service Agents
Customer Service Agents are probably the most commonly encountered type of chatbot. They can perform triage for your human support staff - dealing with the easy questions and requests - leaving us humans to deal with the more complex questions. Many users also find that a chatbot just makes a task quicker - they can get straight to the information they need, without having to wade through page after page on a web site. There is also a phenomemum called "anonymous intimacy" that means that users may often reveal more when talking to a chatbot than when filling a form or talking to a person.
As we talk about in Trainingscape conventional eLearning can be dry and un-engaging. It also suffers form not having the tutor their to answer any questions that a learner may have. Virtual Tutors can be used to help front existing eLearning and bepoke content, guiding the student from piece to piece, answering any questions they may have on the topic (or wider context) and providing short quizes to confirm the learning. Virtual Tutors can even be used to elicit student observations or experience to develop more conversational learning, work through scenarios and case-studies, and even participate in group discussions (sometime even without being spotted!). The most advanced tutors can track user and cohort performance, identify which methods of learning a topic work best for different students, and offer up alternative approaches if the user struggles with any particular approach.
if you'd like to know more about chatbots and conversational AI can help your business then just get in touch.