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RBS customer service gets AI treatment with hybrid bots

Would you be happy to have a bot answer your questions?

By Tom Ball

The Royal Bank of Scotland has been live testing artificial intelligence (AI) for RBS customer service by including a feature that hands the customer over to a user if a question is too complex for the bot to handle.

Customers looking for RBS customer service will be able to send messages to the RBS Assist tool, a bot that functions using technology developed by the vendor LivePerson, a company that develops products for online messaging, analytics and marketing.

The technology used by the RBS customer service bot is cloud-based AI, and it is intended to be able to undertake the menial, administrative tasks that are time consuming for the humans that could be tackling more important issues.

The ability to still access a human operator could prove encouraging customers that are not convinced by the capabilities of automation, potentially resulting in a way of bridging the gap toward greater future use of AI.

Machine learning cyber security: The first line of defense against modern threatsThis goal of sharing the load with human operators intended for AI has been explored and speculated over in other areas as well.  Peter Woollacott, CEO of security firm Huntsman told CBR that automating certain processes will save a great deal of time for the valuable human professionals.

Another factor adding to the need for automation within tech is the current skills gap, an area that has been surrounded with a great deal of concern due to the rapidly growing requirement for skilled workers.

Other recent initiatives involving AI include a customer relationship management (CRM) tool developed by Salesforce for financial advisors, geared towards building and maintaining a highly detailed profile of clients.

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On the one hand it appears that AI can become a helper to professionals inundated with menial tasks, but it could also be considered that as the technology improves, and trust levels have thawed, there may not even be any need for the professionals.

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