The Future of Self-Service Will Be Built on Conversations

In 2008, I was absolutely thrilled when Tony Stark spoke to Jarvis, his super-smart AI assistant in Iron man. I thought, “How cool would it be to have an assistant like Jarvis!”

Cut to 2019, and I can’t imagine a day wherein I don’t interact with an AI assistant or a bot. They wake me up, walk me through my day, help me set up meetings, etc.

The thought that once seemed futuristic is now a reality!

In today’s world, interacting with a machine is as easy and comfortable as talking to a friend. The breakthroughs in human-computer interaction have led to the development of chatbots that provide context-based responses to the user. This has transformed the customer experience in several areas like personal banking, booking movie tickets, renewing insurance policies, and even ordering a pizza.

And, the reason people love chatbots is that having a conversation is the most natural way of interaction.

At Freshservice, we wanted to create such an experience for our customers. This thought led to the development of our conversational portal, which is a simple and effective self-service experience that allows users to have conversations with the portal.

Everything Self-service Is Just a Chat Away

With the new conversational portal, business users can chat with our bot Freddy when they are looking for solution articles, raising an issue, or requesting for a service item.

For example, if Dave from the sales team faces issues in accessing the printer, he can visit the conversational portal and type out the issue. Based on his input, Freddy will provide him a list of solution articles or will help Dave raise a ticket with the IT team.

Raise ticket with Freddy

On top of that, we’ve provided the IT admins with options to customize the conversational portal. They can change various options such as the name of the chatbot, the welcome message shown to the user, the background of the chat interface, etc.

We’ve also designed the flow of ‘requesting a service item’ in such a way that it will fit into the conversational style. Admins can now add and configure custom fields for each service item. This will give your IT team all the required information to fulfill a service request.

Service item (conversational portal)

Best of Both Worlds

If you’re wondering what will happen to the old self-service portal, it is not going anywhere. We’ve decided to let the IT admin choose what is best for their end-users. They can choose between the classic and the conversational portal, or can go for the third option where users can invoke the conversational portal right from the classic portal, by clicking on the chat icon.

Freddy button

The Future of Conversational Portal

The conversational portal is our first step towards the future of self-service. Our vision is to take the IT service desk to the end-user instead of bringing them to a self-service portal. The future we imagine will have a self-service bot residing inside every enterprise messaging app such as Microsoft Teams, Hangouts chat, etc. The end-user should be able to invoke the self-service bot from their messaging app to look for solutions, raise issues, and request service items. This will make the IT service desk accessible and also transform the self-service experience for the user.

The conversational portal is available for all new and existing accounts. To know how to configure the conversational portal, check out our solution article.

Wanna see the conversational portal in action? Click here.

Love it? Hate it? Feel free to send your feedback to support@freshservice.com. We’re happy to assist you.