- Amanda, the virtual agent from Amadeus, is one of many chatbot applications that are enhancing customer service in the travel industry;
- Amadeus says that on the average day she answers more than 1,000 questions from travel agents, or about 120 conversations an hour;
- Amanda is now available in more than 80 countries, provides 24/7 responses and interacts in three languages, with more to be added.
It is now over a year since Amanda was introduced and she is already completely integrated into the companies customer service interface with her artificial intelligence brain and machine learning algorithms delivering fast responses to information requests, solving users' doubts and improving travel agency productivity.
Amadeus says that on the average day she answers more than 1,000 questions from travel agents, or about 120 conversations an hour, some simultaneously. Amanda was launched after research identified that 88% of questions coming in were service requests, and out of these requests, more than 70% were simple and recurring “how to” questions with easy and fast answers.
A chatbot that is open to all agencies, dynamic enough to answer a range of questions, and connected 24/7 was the perfect solution. “Being open, dynamic, and connected is part of our wider vision to create a Live Travel Space for our customers to access the expertise and technology – and chatbots - they need to achieve success,” says Joerg Schuler, vice president of travel channels customer service at Amadeus.
The benefits of a virtual solution are significant. It provides 24/7 coverage to support global operations, delivers answers more efficiently than a human and means agents don’t need to pick up the phone mid-booking if they´re stuck.
But, just like humans, there are going to be questions that a chatbot can’t answer, whether that is due to technical, language or query complexity issues. As well as improving customer service, this is an area that could frustrate users as they fail to gain the answers they seek.
This is when real customer service experts need to be on hand to help. By answering many of the more simpler requests, Amanda allows the customer service experts to concentrate on more complex issues and the provision of value-added services, but machine learning and artificial intelligence mean she learns each day and this will improve performance over time.
Amanda is now available in more than 80 countries chatting with travel agents in Latin America, Portugal, New Zealand, Australia and the Pacific Islands, Scandinavia, Southern Africa, East Africa, Nigeria, Ghana, Malaysia, Spain, the Philippines, and most recently, the UK and Ireland. She is now learning new languages, and will soon be integrated in the Amadeus Service Hub customer service portal and other Amadeus solutions.