Governments to Deliver Quality User Experience Through AI Chatbots
New Demand for AI Chatbots Within the Government
It has been estimated that by 2021, 30% of interactions the government has with citizens will be done through an AI-driven conversational channel.
AI-driven conversational channels are important as they provide personalized experiences and can increase citizen engagement. Chatbots, for example, have been crucial as governments look to spread timely information and answer citizens’ questions about the COVID-19 pandemic. Therefore, the way a chatbot operates can have a reputational impact on the government and must be well maintained. Citizens, which in this case are users, will no longer have to learn how to navigate commonly complex government websites or applications.
What Drives a Successful AI-Driven Chatbot
The four main factors that influence the success of an AI-driven conversational channel boil down to design, language, identity, and consistency.
In regards to design, the availability and quality of features like intent recognition, compound requests, term extraction, and pattern recognition all play a big role. A chatbot must be able to utilize NLP, natural language processing, to understand the user’s intent behind starting the conversation to fulfill their needs precisely. The ability to extract the most used or important expressions and patterns to summarise the user content is thus key. The chatbot should also be platform agnostic, meaning that it can run on more than one platform.
When responding to users, whether that is written or orally, the language utilized should be easy to understand and neither lengthy nor laden with many technical terms. Users should also be aware of a chatbot’s capabilities as chatbots may not recognize questions if they’re less common. In this case, chatbots should be able to request clarifications of questions or respond with alternatives if a question can’t be resolved. In order to alleviate the risk of a poor user experience, chatbots should mainly focus on small, well-defined but high-value problems.
Chatbots should also be given an identity that is humanlike as it makes them seem like a member of the government service delivery team. While chatbots often acquire many unique identities for various functions, it can get incredibly confusing. Instead, having one single “master” chatbot is useful.
Finally, there must be consistency in the type of technical language a chatbot understands and the language style it utilizes to respond to questions. All of these four factors can be improved upon by establishing partnerships between the digital design team and the organization’s communication team.
At last, anonymity and privacy involved in conversational AI platforms are important to address. Government classification of data which involves classifying data into 5 different categories from top secret to unclassified makes it easier to identify what type of information is appropriate to proceed to third-party platforms when directing a user to other resources. With all these tips in mind, governments can focus on delivering a quality user experience that is conducted online.