AiThority Interview Series With Ram Menon, Founder and CEO, Avaamo
In a career spanning two decades in enterprise software, I have worn a number of overlapping hats which may at times looks odd. Nonetheless, it has kept my head warm over the years!
I have been an engineer, product manager, corporate venture, General manager, Chief Marketing Officer. I am currently enjoying the experience of building a AI driven enterprise software company.
Our mission is to reinvent the way we communicate, transact and get work done in today’s mobile first world We believe that chatbots are going to change the way customers; employees and stakeholders interact with your business and committed to make it as easy as possible for the enterprise to implement this paradigm shift in user computing. Much like the way the graphical user interface (browser) changed end user computing, Chatbots will change the way we engage, browse and transact.
Tell us about yourself and what prompted you to start an enterprise software company that aspires to reinvent the way people and organizations converse?
I spent 15 years building an enterprise software company called TIBCO, and Avaamo is a continuation of that journey. I believe conversational computing is the next secular frontier of end user computing, moving from a keyboard to the easiest way humans access information in natural language, and wanted to apply that to the enterprise.
What are the challenges that enterprises face that Avaamo’s technology can help alleviate?
Avaamo provides a way for enterprises to deliver on
- customers self-service,
- employee self-service, as well as
- supplier self-service to reduce costs and enhance interactions
In which industries does Avaamo see maximum traction?
Our focus is healthcare, telecommunication, financial services and insurance.
What security measures does Avaamo take when dealing with a company’s data?
Avaamo has several layers of security measures, namely among them:
- all data is encrypted
- data is owned by the customer
- ability to access data is controlled by plugging into the customer’s existing identity management and policy systems
- we support security standard like HIPAA for healthcare and GDPR for European companies
How can a company use the Conversation Modeler feature to customize it to their needs?
Natural conversation is prone to colloquialism, pronunciation errors, accents and more. With our syntactic/ semantic/ aVertical specific machine learning models, companies can deliver precision and accuracy in the interactions and customize this based on country language, and brand or type of interactions.
Tell us about the Small Talk Library. How does it help in creating a better Customer Experience?
A Small Talk library specifically enhances the customer experience around making conversations more natural and smoother.
What other enterprise softwares does Avaamo integrate with to make adoption easier?
Avaamo integrates with over 150+ enterprises systems, the largest library in the industry to enable customers to access information in their ERP/CRM/ SCM/ ITSM /Billing and revenue management systems.
In your experience, are there certain geographies that are adopting AI technologies to deal with customers more rapidly?
We see a lot of interest in Asia, where volumes are higer, customer interactions are more granular and the acceptance of AI-based systems by the user is faster and smoother.
What are the challenges in ensuring that the technology is able to understand context, sentiment and tone?
Challenges include the language. In the first generation of keyboard based software, language meant supporting double byte characters. In conversational, AI it’s an entirely different kettle of fish. French German is different from Swiss German. Brazilian Portuguese is different from normal Portuguese. These nuances matter. To do this we have built fundamentally new technology to bring conversational AI across languages to enterprises.
How does bot personality help customers warm up to talking to them versus human customer support staff?
In my experience, Bot personality is overrated. We do over 2M interactions/ day in 40 countries. Our customer care is about getting the conversation right. Precision / accuracy matters more than personality.
What’s next on the agenda for Avaamo?
Our agenda is to build a broad platform that fulfills the promise of conversational computing- from conversations analytics to judgment intensive tasks – where AI-based software can enhance and improve the customer experience.
Thank you Ram! That was fun and hope to see you back on AIthority soon.