August 17 by Kingman Tang

In my last blog, I shared that Virtual Assistants are ready for prime time. In this post, I would like to expand on where Enterprise Virtual Assistants (EVA) are likely to show up first.
I created the following priority matrix to show high and low priority applications for EVAs. Process complexity is one dimension. Process complexity means how involved a particular business process is. For example, when you think of the Customer Relationship Management (CRM) process, this can be simple, like updating an opportunity field that may involve five steps, or complex like when a customer service agent follows a call script to interview a customer to arrive at the resolution to a problem.

Frequency of application use or how often, from low to high, an end user interacts with a particular business software solution. Is this every hour, every day, once a week, once a month or even once a quarter? You can see how these two dimensions create high and low value segments in the chart below based on a set of examples for each quadrant in the matrix.

 

Quadrant 1 – High Value, High Priority:

Business processes in this quadrant are ideal for EVA as an enhanced user interface. Take your Configure Price Quote (CPQ) process as an example, quoting and pricing a simple piece of hardware can involve a dozen steps or more. The frequency of quoting and pricing to many prospects (and existing customers) can be a daily or once a week task.

Quadrant 2 – High Value, Low Priority:

The business processes in this quadrant are complex, hence a high reward situation, but the end user (not your administrators) frequency of use tends to be more in the once a month range. Think about how often your employees interact with your Human Resource management (HRM) software. How often do employees need to change family statuses, look up benefits, or search for a job candidates? These tasks tend to be relatively infrequent. I’m not saying virtual assistants shouldn’t be used for these processes, what I am saying is that I would deprioritize these processes as virtual assistant enabled candidates.

Quadrant 3 – Low Value, Low Priority:

This is the “no fly zone”. Writing my annual review may involve only a few steps (fill out 4 or 5 fields) and its best written on a desktop. As its name states, this is done once a year, so there’s no real benefit to enabling a virtual assistant.

Quadrant 4 – High Value, Medium Priority:

The opposite of quadrant 2, quadrant 5 processes may not be as involved or complicated, but end users access the application on a daily or weekly basis making these processes attractive for the virtual assistant interface. I placed CRM or sales force automation in this quadrant because every time a B2B seller has some activity with a prospect or customer they are supposed to update the opportunity or create a note associated with that opportunity. This happens on a daily basis and having a simple conversational user interface, without hunting, tabbing, or pecking around a GUI makes more sense.

Caveats:

  • If the process is too complex (i.e., too many steps) or best done with a GUI, a virtual assistant would not be the best interface.
  • With processes that take more than a dozen steps, integrating machine learning insights can cut down on the number of steps by recommending or guiding a user.

Meet Max, Your Virtual Assistant

In my previous blog, I explained who Max is. Let me provide a framework for how we think Max, a virtual assistant, can help enterprise software.

Instead of “working” for your business application, now Max works for you at key moments of your day (selling, contracting, etc.) – whether it is data entry, updates, searching, requests, or executing tasks and end-to-end processes, Max is there to help.

virtual assistant

Max has three major competencies:

  1. Assist: Whatever you need done in your system, just tell Max what to do. You no longer need to log into your system. There’s no need to open a browser or download an application. Max makes your tasks as easy as having a conversation – anywhere, anytime.
  2. Guide: Much like a Sherpa, Max expertly navigates you around infrequently accessed tasks while steering you through established company policies.
  3. Coach: We all need feedback, thought-provoking questions and encouragement to up our game. Max will proactively offer advice to help make all your sellers perform like your best sellers.

Max is ready to work for you now. To see Max in action click here, or contact us today.

virtual assistant

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