Hermes UK have launched a Virtual Assistant
built by Synthetix, called Millie. Hermes operate their own independent courier network delivering over 100 million parcels each year on behalf of some of the UK's largest online retailers including Next Directory, QVC, JD Williams and Debenhams. Millie is designed to help end customers check, track and send their parcels via the Hermes network. Additional comments by developer Synthetix:
Visitors to http://www.myhermes.co.uk
can type a query into the "Got a question?" box on the hompage and are greeted Millie, a smartAgent. The tool is there to answer queries twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. The smartAgent has been implemented to improve the customer experience and reduce the routine inbound enquiries to the Hermes contact centre and thus saving costs.
The smartAgent allows customers to ask natural language questions about sending and tracking packages, whilst also navigating them around the website. The smartAgent also has a number of pre-programmed conversational goals to attempt to impart essential information. The smartAgent has a wealth of knowledge: users can ask such questions as "Where is my parcel?", "How much will it cost to send a parcel","How is the parcel collected?" or even "Will you do next day delivery". There are also a number of special interactive journeys built inside the smartAgent which assist the customer in reaching an appropriate resolution.
Hermes are also using the Synthetix.info service to analyse visitors' wants and needs by looking at the questions they ask. The use of the conversational logs and analysis allow Hermes to better serve their customers. The conversation logs also allow the company to make sure that the smartAgent always has up to date information.