OBI4wan starts promising research in Conversational Human Voice with Tilburg University and VU University Amsterdam

Together with Tilburg University and the VU University Amsterdam, OBI4wan started a research on the Conversational Human Voice (CHV) in Online Communication. The research is financed by the Dutch Organization for scientific research (NWO) and OBI4wan.

By the digitalization of society, service is shifting more and more to online channels: stakeholders express their questions, compliments, and complaints through social media channels and platforms, whereby organizations try to respond as accurately as possible. Having a fitting and human tone of voice is very important. With the new tool that has been developed in this yearly research project, organizations can offer better online service in the upcoming years.

A new age brings new needs along

In this digital world, we search for ways to communicate in a human tone with our customers. Several aspects determine the right tone of voice for your organization. Do you respond formally or informally? Do you use smileys and humor in your messages? Do you close off with a name to make the conversation more personal? There are plenty of guidelines for finding the right tone of voice. With this research, we take a step further in making the measure of voice within tooling measurable.

Scientific research forms the base of innovation

To improve the quantity and quality of web care, organizations have a need for automatized monitoring tools, that identify online messages, analyze content and five suggestions for a response that is matching the client by the tone of voice as well as content. Moreover, we ask organizations a training instrument for employees to guarantee the consistency of web care messages. Just a human tone of voice is of great importance for making online conversation to succeed your online conversation.

Our first goal is to take linguistic elements out of the research literature and to identify a large number of web care – conversations’’ – states Christine, a researcher at Tilburg University.

Her colleague Charlotte van Hooijdonk (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam) continues: ‘’The second step is to ask web care-employees how they perceive web care-conversations with different linguistic elements.’’

The third step is the development of a tool in cooperation with PBI4wan. This tool makes it possible to train employees within existing tooling on the tone of voice,”, says Levi Witbaard from OBI4wan.Online messages shall be analyzed through this tool on the occasion of the conversation, the medium and the human tone of voice. This results in an advising score of the formulation of the right response to the message. Moreover, the human tone of the intended web care-response shall be measured, in order that not only the appropriation of the message is guaranteed, but also the consistency between employees is reached.

Think Big, Start Small, Learn Fast

This tool is the first step in automatization of the web care-responses with the human size. The future scenario is a balanced mix of automatized and human customer contact, whereby organizations through online channels with target groups communicate personally and personalized. The coming time all parties started with this research, that is standing at the basis of technological developments within OBI4wan.

‘’In the last few years, OBI4wan grew strongly. Our focus is on innovation and offering great customer experience. This research suits perfectly within our vision for the upcoming years’’, demonstrates Alexander de Ruiter, CEO of OBI4wan.

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