Russ Shaw is right to point out that chatbots, once held up as the next big thing for communication, must be under-pinned by excellent technology and good quality data. Only a well-engineered chatbot will provide a delightful customer experience, but when it comes to resolving customer queries in a more efficient way, especially within financial institutions, what are the alternatives?
Just try adjusting your flight booking by email – even though you are dealing with relatively well-structured data any automated response will likely end up sending you to FAQ site or help centre which, in my experience, is a bit of an oxymoron!
Take it to the world of finance and email or chat solutions provide an equally inefficient way to solve issues and operational disputes – where the combined demand for structured data, great customer experience and timely responses is hugely important.
Whilst great advances in AI and ML over large data sets have seen a step change in chatbot capability they are still not making a dent in the millions of emails being sent each day. This couldn’t have been what Ray Tomlinson, who is credited with sending the first email 50 years ago, could have ever foreseen.
So, the only real way to tackle the tyranny of email is to think about the underlying workflow that is needed to support the communication between parties. Only then should you look to polish the experience with a friendly chatbot.