Integrating voice activation with chatbots is the latest business innovation that is now available on a massive scale. Clearly this technological breakthrough resolves issues around one of the biggest expenses and risks for any business today: human resources and staffing.  When it comes to the liabilities and risks this brings to the success of your business, it pays to look at all the available alternatives on the market to make sure your venture thrives well into the next century. Staffing is not only one of the biggest fixed expenses but also one of business’ resources that cost the most in hidden expenses such as having to train in new staff when old ones decide to leave or retire, and having to put back-up plans in place to counteract unreliability and unforeseen eventualities.

Cloning Your Dream Employee

The fact is that good staff, and more so consistently good staff, is very hard to find and it can make or break the success of any venture and be the difference between just surviving and thriving.  With record employment levels – and an ageing population in many parts of the world, this is the very technology that will save economies from adverse demographic trends.

With the addition of chatbots to your business, it is like cloning your dream employee.  Yet there is a slight difference: we’re not concerned about them going on holiday, getting sick or retiring, or having a bad day and taking it out on your clients at the expense of your business reputation.  Added to that, your chat bot does not need a lunch break which means that you can offer 24/7 accessibility to your clients.

Revolutionary development with Snatchbot

Historically though, people like to deal with a human face or voice that can offer them empathy, someone that they feel can understand them, their problems and frustrations.  With early technology, programmers started off with very generic bot-like voices that had only limited response possibilities. Admittedly, early inventions was frustrating at the best of times, especially when you made contact to ask a specific question and got greeted with a “press 1 or 2” in a tin metal voice. The revolutionary development of the programming progress since, has seen a much more human like voice evolved with a multiple response capability.  Not only does it sound more human like offering the feeling of being understood and cared for, but also comes with an array of abilities to suit a wide variety of business needs and offers the fluent interaction that clients need.

With the latest advancement of SnatchBot you can now use the text-to-speech function to add a voice to your chatbot. This accessibility option enables businesses to offer a service which helps clients to feel they are dealing with a person rather than a metal tin.  The simulation of human interaction offers stress free communication with no possibility for misunderstandings or misinterpretation of in nuances. It also offers great inclusion for customers with disabilities such as visual impairment, dyslexia or dysgraphia or even Parkinson’s Disease and arthritis.  Users have the option to listen to responses instead of having to read them, which adds the bonus of showing that your company cares for people with disabilities and special needs.

Text-to-speech generation options

There are two options for activating the text-to-speech functioning.  The first is pre-generated which is the fastest solution and suitable for texts that are long and not changed very often. The second option is called auto generated.  This feature allows for the audio files to be generated word for word as displayed in the chat. It includes possible variables. The operation is conversational and enhances customer support by offering human friendly interaction that is caring and efficient.

Industries that can benefit from SnatchBot voice activation

Any industry that offers a service dealing with clients, where high quality customer satisfaction is paramount, will benefit from having voice activation in their chatbots. Clients will be able to find solutions much faster and efficiently, helping you to fast track the flow of business. If the flow of business can be managed, it will make sure there is no bottleneck of traffic that congests and stop the ability to cater for new business. On top of being able to speed up the flow of customers which will add to a positive customer satisfaction rate, being user friendly to clients with special needs will show that you really care.

A True Game Changer for Developers

The best things in life are free! SnatchBot is the only chatbot platform to offer ASR for free. Something that is a true game changer for developers. If you are looking to propel your business to the next level of customer satisfaction and add cost saving measures and a reliability factor to that, text-to-speech generation is the way forward.

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5 Simple Steps to Getting Started in The Cloud

All start-ups and small businesses have heard that the cloud is everywhere and can transform your business. But what is it and what can it do? Cloud-IT specialists Principal have the answers.

Confusingly, the cloud is used by providers, software sellers and businesses who want your money as a catch-all term for a variety of things. It can become quite complicated, but it doesn’t need to be.

The cloud is basically an on-demand storage or software resource that you can access immediately through the internet.

Tech giant IBM offers a handy definition of the various different types of cloud applications which is a good place to start. It’s likely that after reading that you’ll have more questions than you started with. To help, here are 5 simple steps to getting started in the cloud.

1. Pick your cloud

The first thing to clarify is, like the sky above, there isn’t one cloud – there are infinite numbers of potential clouds. As a business, you need to configure one that works for you.

As a small business you will want to focus on how the cloud can benefit you. For most, that’s likely to be moving certain data and applications to the cloud.

The first step is to analyse your data centre usage. This audit can identify your current software and storage requirements, enabling you to identify areas that could be better served in the cloud.

It’s important to recognise that to work any proposed move needs to improve efficiency and be cost-effective.

The bottom line is, if it won’t save you time or money, then think again.

2. Solid security

The cloud is as secure – if not more secure – than your own proprietary network, but you still need to be cautious.

Once you’ve identified the information and software you’d like to be hosted by the cloud then take the time to assess what this means for security.

The Data Protection Act and European Data Protection Regulation all have implications for how you manage and store data, and how you select your partners too – more on that below.

3. Simple strategy

Once you’ve done the groundwork, you can begin straight away. Microsoft, Adobe, SAP are just a couple of the huge names who have moved to providing software via the cloud. Dropbox is a leading name in cloud storage, but isn’t the only one.  All you need to do to get started in the cloud is get your credit card out and sign up.

If you do though, you could be making a mistake. According to tech bible ZDNet, what most cloud projects miss is a strategy – and we agree.

A solid cloud computing solution needs structure. This will help create a system that works for the organisation and your customer. It is also built with the future in mind, growing and developing as your business does.

4. Cloud culture

Your implementation strategy is important. Equally important is how your organisation embraces the cloud. It’s all about culture.

The cloud offers freedom to access information, work collaboratively, remotely and at all times of the day. But it comes with some new risks. These are particularly important to recognise as employees increasingly use their own devices for work.

Businesses need to develop working practices and approaches that are fit for the new world of the cloud. You’ll need to introduce new staff guidelines for document sharing and storage to help you and your employees work in a new way.

5. Provider or partner

If you’re tech minded it’s relatively easy to set-up a personal cloud, but you need to explore whether it’s the right approach for you.

Focusing solely on individual providers can leave you with a fragmented cloud system, with complex and inefficient interdependencies between different pieces of software from different providers.

In the end, you could end up paying for a system that far more complicated than the one it replaced.

One way of avoiding this is working with a partner who can help you configure a cloud solution that works for you. They can also take care of some of the security and access issues, helping you devise a strategy for success.

A successful transition to the cloud needs some thought and some planning, but genuinely does have the power to transform the way you work – increasing productivity, efficiency and profit.

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