Like with any project, good planning is the key to success also with your bot project. Having seen many chatbot and virtual customer assistant projects over the past years, there are couple of lessons learned and best practices to keep in mind. The key feature here is how to align your team inside the company so that the project gets delivered in time. The task becomes especially tricky when your company has thousands of employees and you are coordinating tasks across several departments and teams.
Here are the things to help you out.
1️⃣ Pick a leader. Choose the person who is ultimately responsible for the project. Essentially that person is like the “mother” or “father” for the bot. It is his/her task to make sure the project gets delivered. That person is also the one making final decisions on bot related developments.
2️⃣ Choose your success metric. Make sure the team is aligned on what is the ultimate goal of the chatbot you wish to deploy. It can be the number of deflected customer service tickets, increase in response time, saved time for human employees, increased product sales conversion etc. Whatever it is, make sure your whole team knows that is your North Star.
3️⃣ Build in-house or outsource development. Large companies have usually in-house developers that could be capable of building chat automation systems. If you have such teams at your disposal then it is possible to get started there. However, in many cases such teams have plenty of things to do and usually it is easier to run first chat automation pilots with an external developer at smaller scale to see their capability and also measure how well chat automation can help your company.
4️⃣ Have your team be ready for the long term. Understand that your bot is not perfect on day 1. It takes a few weeks first to see how well the bot is performing. In next iterations which take another few weeks you can start measuring how people respond and what are the things you need to change. It can take a few months to get a good picture of how best to optimize your bot so get your team ready to be in it for a few months to really see the results.
What I recommend you to do is communicate this to your team beforehand. It will make the project less turbulent and you are more likely to maximize the value of your invested time and effort. And if you need help with these decisions, then reach out indrek (at) alphablues (dot) com and I can provide some quick insight and second opinion.