A chatbot which could use various API’s and be integrated to Slack; a communications platform our team uses every day to communicate with each other.
From general messages about company updates to private conversations and channels for specific projects. The chatbot could be developed to solve all the mentioned problems as well as provide a more effective process of doing things, all on a platform that we already use at CUBE.
What Does the PIP Chatbot Do?
Checking Meeting Rooms
Ask PIP ‘which meeting room is free at the moment’, ‘is the sofa-room free?’ or ‘when is the next available meeting room’ and the chatbot will access our Google Calendars to respond to your query and feedback the answers.
Submitting internal activities and feedback used to be done on a couple of different platforms, with PIP accessing these documents, now the chatbot can be used to quickly take food and coffee orders, submit weekly feedback and rate the team’s week with an emoji.
This feature was one I feel had the most importance, I can only use the PIP chatbot to solve the problems our team is facing if I know what they are! If our team experience any issues, have any ideas or know how to improve the system, they can actually use PIP to submit these requests to me and anyone else working on the project.
To keep the team and everyone involved up-to-date with the latest features that the chatbot includes, I decided to include an action for the ‘what’s new’ command, which results in PIP giving you an update on everything she can do since the last time our team checked in with her.
The Future of the Project?
I’ll start by tackling a few of the feature requests that PIP has been collecting to make the chatbot as useful as possible to the team. A couple of other team members also have Innovation Time coming up and would be able to help me out in a few of the more difficult areas of the project.
With the plan for continuous improvements in place, I also want to look into integrating the chatbot with communication platforms other than Slack. We’re currently discussing if PIP could add value to users on our website or be a first point of call on Facebook Messenger.
Are chatbots taking over the world?
The value and potential applications for chatbots goes far beyond internal communication tools, with the rising success of chatbots being accredited to a few different behavioural-trends and advancements in AI technology.
Such as the social media trend that’s seeing more and more people adopt messaging platforms, rather than their traditional social-counterparts, to connect and communicate with brands. Just look at how Facebook Messenger has the ability to become your default SMS app on Android devices.
As brands have recognised and jumped on the chatbot trend, organisations like IBM, Microsoft and Google have all introduced development tools and frameworks that lead to significantly smaller costs than full app development projects.
If you are wondering where to start you can read more in my guide on how to build a Slack chatbot in which I show how I brought PIP to life and delve into the more technical aspects of the project.
Whether it’s an internal communications tool, a customer-service offering or a new way of automating processes, chatbots can solve a number of problems for your brand and customers, to find out how, send us your challenge!