Cloud strategy of Aylesbury Vale council uses AI to reduce costs

The Aylesbury Vale District Council (AVDC) has launched a new programme called Connected Knowledge for its working practices, a part of which involves installing artificial intelligence (AI) with the help of Digital Genius. AVDC began five years ago its cloud strategy, involving a transition to virtualised working. The ‘Human AI Customer Service Platform’ of Digital Genius has added AI to the council’s customer service operations. The software helps in all types of customer engagement, including e-mails, webchat and phone calls.

The software solution, using machine language, has started improving response times to common queries, as the system continues to learn. It has helped to lower response times of the AVDC service team for enquiries from about 8 mins to 3-5 minutes. The council has, since the start of Connected Knowledge programmes, planned to use AI, prompted by an announcement that government grants will no longer be given to local councils. ADVC conceived to respond to the demand for a 24×7 digital experience and to try to keep costs down, while meeting expectations of residents.

Maryvonne Hassal, digital strategy manager of AVDC, said the software is being used to assist staff member to answer correctly to customer queries and quickly. The automatic response generated for the agent is quicker than finding the answer themselves and helps better quality and consistency, she pointed out. She added that the Connected Knowledge programme provides a wholistic view of their customers, to understand them better and provide better services, plus automating simple tasks to free up time to deal with other customer requirements. She says the team is being assisted by the software rather than replaced. AVSC is not only one of the first councils to implement the AI aid, but also to develop ‘skill’ for Alexa from Amazon Echo.

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