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  • Writer's pictureAndy Dharmani

How Chatbots for Microsoft Teams are benefiting businesses

More businesses than ever are using online platforms like Slack or Microsoft Teams to keep employees connected - especially those who work remotely. Offering both live messages and video chat, Microsoft Teams in particular is a popular option with a lot of potential for integrated apps.

These integrated apps include Chatbots, either scripted or AI trained, which sit comfortably within Teams. Gartner predicts that by 2022, 70% of white-collar workers will interact with conversational platforms on a daily basis, As a result, more organizations are investing in chatbot development and deployment.

Here is how Chatbots in MS Teams can benefit your business and improve the employee experience online.

How do Chatbots work in Microsoft Teams?

Chatbots that integrate with Teams act like a bridge connecting employees and promoting active collaboration without management and support staff needing to be present at all times.

To put it simply, instead of emailing or calling - or searching for information through company files - employees can engage directly with your chatbot in Teams. This keeps them from switching apps and windows frequently, and saves the company time that may have been spent on unnecessary communication for common issues like IT support, expenses, submitting claims, etc.

Your personal chatbot can fit into any part of Microsoft Teams, including:

  • Group chat

  • Channels

  • One-on-one conversations

Your employees can work easily with the bot - via interactive cards with popular queries, direct texts and more. Since bots are powered by Artificial Intelligence, they understand 1000s of phrases to accurately return information.

Chatbots are perfectly at home in Microsoft Teams; after all, this is a chat-based tool, so with a bot it’s just a matter of users interacting with AI instead of the real person - automating the queries process and lowering overheads.

Create a smarter and more efficient IT Helpdesk

Aside from offering responses to common queries or retrieving information, Chatbots have shown that they have much capacity for IT Helpdesk. As employees spend more time working from home, questions and concerns about technology have increased the workload for IT departments.

It’s a common joke in the IT world to try “turning it off and on again”, but the truth is that many technical difficulties can be solved with simple advice that the bot can easily offer, freeing up the team to focus on higher-value tasks.

With a chatbot, you can enable user self-service with automated answers available 24/7 - which means instant help, no matter what time it is. If the bot can resolve the problem for an employee, this means less time spent by the IT department and more convenience overall.

Chatbots built on platforms like Ako’s InConvo, also have the ability to sit in your internal website like SharePoint and carry out similar functions. If you are ready to invest in a powerful Microsoft Teams-integrated bot, then it’s best to find one that is scalable and can move across platforms as needed.

Some functions for a chatbot as your IT support:

  • 24/7 IT helpdesk availability

  • Automate troubleshooting steps like printing, internet connectivity and more

  • User authentication

  • Help resolve work-from-home issues

  • Capture software and hardware requests

  • Automated management approval workflow

  • Broadcast immediate or scheduled outage notifications to staff

  • Integrate with your existing ITSM tools like Servicenow, FrontRange, etc.

  • Make the same functionality available in MS Teams and SharePoint.

  • Extract information from existing knowledge base, FAQs and user guides and bring it to the actively used messaging app like MS Teams.

Answer HR queries faster, while empowering HR staff to take up important tasks

With Chatbots, you can empower human-like conversations to respond to most asked employee queries at the workplace. It can be as simple as querying about your leave balance to processing an international travel request and sharing relevant documentation. HR support Chatbots can help improve employee engagement, reduce average response time and significantly reduce HR workload.

Kind of things a HR support Chatbot can assist with…

  • Employee on-boarding

  • Assisting with return to work amidst Covid-19 scare

  • Leave management

  • Understanding employee benefits and entitlements

  • Promote and understand policies and best practices

  • Timesheet management

  • Provide employee directory

  • Enroll to training and sessions

Improve internal corporate communications

An average employee receives 88 emails per day. Since employees are drowning in emails, the deluge of internal communication emails are likely the first to be deleted. Intranet is a reactive tool and it’s up to employees to check the intranet - which means that any urgent updates may not be checked for days or even weeks. With a familiar channel like MS Teams, HR can broadcast messages to the targeted employee whenever they need to. Staff will be notified of the message wherever they have MS Teams - be it phone, PC or tablet.

Push notifications are read within a few minutes of receiving it, unlike emails and internal information portals.

Bring information to one place

Most businesses have many diverse internal applications. Although everybody would like to have just a single source of truth, that’s often not the reality. In situations like after a merger, a business may have several payroll systems, benefits platforms, intranets and all sorts of file storage solutions. The digital workplace can be a confusing jumble, and people may not even know where to start to get the information they need.

A well-built chatbot can gather information from all those different systems so the employee has just one simple interface to use. This single interface is the ultimate goal, allowing employees to access enterprise information in a natural manner on their messaging app or via a voice-controlled device.

So the benefit is that the employee can get the information they need right away, without having to think about where to start, who to ask, or how to search.

How to start implementing your MS Teams chatbot

It’s easy to work with Ako’s InConvo to create your own chatbot solution at 5x the speed we’ve seen from companies of the past. We work with you to develop your AI’s personality, responses and more - and the best part is that your bot uses the input it receives to continue learning and improving its answers.

As more users engage with the chatbot through Teams, more information can be added for the bot to raise its level of support. The bot also gathers analytics that allow us to inform you of things like demographics, popular times to use the online support and other info that helps us further tailor the experience.

Contact us any time to learn more about InConvo and how digital assistants can revolutionise your customer support, employee satisfaction and reduce costs.


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