The Luvo cognitive chat bot, which uses IBM’s cloud-based Watson Conversation service, will be available to around 10% of RBS’s customers in Scotland in December as part of its first customer pilot.
Luvo will answer simple questions in under a second and direct customers to the right human agent if the question is more complex. If the pilot is successful, Luvo will be rolled out to the bank’s NatWest customers.
The bank has already trialled the technology with 1,200 staff, where it handled queries from small businesses customers with problems such as lost corporate cards or forgotten pins. “With Luvo being able to find answers from a variety of sources in under a second, and with staff being freed up to handle more complex problems, customers are to set benefit from a much simpler and faster process,” said an RBS statement. RBS said the chat bot might be able to use IBM Watson Alchemy Language in the future, which would help it understand how a customer is feeling and then change its tone and actions accordingly. “Luvo frees advisors from spending time on simple, easily addressed queries so they can help customers with more complex issues and questions,” said Jane Howard, head of personal banking at NatWest and RBS.
According to Chris Withers, Europe head of financial services for Watson Solutions at IBM, the cognitive system will learn how to complete more complex requests, and using predictive analytics could detect issues before they happen.