Conversational Intelligence: do humans still need humans?

28 June 2024 / Neil Pendrey

Humans and computers used to speak different languages, however, today this gap is narrowing. Whether it’s asking Alexa to play energy music for your at-home workout or using a chatbot to request a replacement for your recently purchased coffee machine, every day we’re using conversational language to engage with the technology around us.

However, of all the ways humans communicate, texting is probably the most direct. Text carries less redundant information than other ways of sharing information. With text, there are no accents to understand or no voice intonations to decode, no body language to translate, and no facial expressions to interpret. Text is something computers can understand and process quickly and that’s why messaging is a great place for humans and AI to work together in the form of chatbots.

How can businesses benefit from using chatbots?
Conversational technologies have enabled chatbots to become more sophisticated and responsive, offering a wide range of benefits over traditional interfaces for both users and businesses:

Enhanced user engagement: By mimicking human conversation, they encourage users to interact more naturally, leading to higher engagement rates and longer session durations.

Instant responses: Eliminating the need for users to wait for assistance, they offer real-time responses. This instant gratification leads to higher user satisfaction and a more positive overall experience.

Scalability: Conversational interfaces can handle a large volume of interactions simultaneously without experiencing the fatigue that human agents might face. This scalability is especially useful during peak times or when dealing with a high number of inquiries.

Cost savings: By automating routine and repetitive tasks, businesses can reduce the need for manual intervention and allocate human resources to more complex and value-added tasks. This can lead to significant cost savings over time.

Language support: With advancements in natural language processing, conversational interfaces can support multiple languages and dialects, enabling businesses to reach a global audience.

Lead Generation and Sales: Chatbots can guide users through the sales funnel, answer product-related questions, and assist with purchase decisions, potentially increasing conversion rates and revenue.


Why aren’t more organisations making the move to conversational interfaces?
While conversational user interfaces, including chatbots and voice assistants, offer numerous benefits, there are several reasons why more companies might not be using them to their full potential. In short, easier said than done as simplicity in the front-end equals complexity in the back-end.

So given the obvious benefits, some organisations might not understand how conversational interfaces can enhance user experiences, streamline operations, or contribute to their specific business goals.

Developing and maintaining conversational interfaces requires investment in terms of time, money, and skilled personnel while demonstrating the tangible benefits and measuring the impact of these interfaces can be challenging, especially in the short term.

Despite these challenges, the adoption of conversational user interfaces is growing steadily as organisations recognise their potential to transform customer interactions, enhance employee productivity, and drive innovation. As the technology matures and becomes more accessible, more organisations are likely to explore and leverage the benefits of conversational interfaces.


Who needs humans?
The utilisation of chatbots creates an easier working environment for human employees. Before an agent needs to speak to a customer, the chatbot has already tried to assist and collected all of the necessary information on the problem. By the time it passes the customer to the agent, the agent will have all of the information they require. This creates an ideal solution as the agent can then concentrate on assisting the customer to the best of their ability.

Incorporating a ‘human in the loop’ approach, where chatbots are complemented by human intervention when needed, can strike a balance between automation and personalised service. This approach leverages the strengths of both chatbots and humans to provide seamless, efficient, and ethical user experiences across various contexts.


Conversational intelligence powered by chatbots is redefining the future of work across industries. From enhancing customer experiences to improving employee productivity and fostering innovation, the impact of chatbots is undeniable. As technology continues to evolve, businesses that embrace the potential of conversational intelligence stay ahead in a rapidly changing digital landscape.

So yes, conversational interfaces are going to be an important part of the evolution of the business world. But the impact is going to be felt far beyond. Humans need to be prepared for a seismic shift in the way they communicate.

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