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Free download 2 pages, 89kB Excel file

Updated for 2019! In this download, Tangowork Consultants share their detailed project plan for deploying an enterprise chatbot. This is a tried-and-true plan that we use as the starting point for all our chatbot consulting engagements.

Includes:

  • 5 key project phases for deploying an enterprise chatbot
  • 32 detailed steps including Task, Goal, Deliverable and Notes
  • Excel format; ready for you to modify
Download our project plan for enterprise chatbots!

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The post Download: Project Plan for an Enterprise Chatbot appeared first on Tangowork: Consulting for Employee Chatbots & Conversational UIs.

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I recently had to use the eLearning system at a Fortune 100 corporation. All consultants, including me, were required to complete a module on Privacy. I was struck by 3 things:

– How dated the eLearning system felt
– How difficult the interface was to understand
– How disruptive the training was to my day

If you use an eLearning system at your organization, there’s a good chance you feel similarly.

I believe chatbots have the potential to transform eLearning at any organization. Watch this demo of the Tangowork Chatbot Accelerator configured for micro-learning.

Chatbots for Employee Microlearning - YouTube

There are 3 reasons why chatbots are so powerful for eLearning:

1. The interface is intuitive. Everyone understands how to use the messaging-style conversational interface.

2. The information is bite-sized. The nature of the chatbot medium forces brevity.

3. Chatbots can nudge. A short, proactive broadcast can be sent to employees’ messaging apps, nudging them towards the desired behavior.

The eLearning systems in most organizations are getting long in the tooth. eLearning by chatbot — or “microlearning” — is an exciting development for anyone tasked with delivering a training or change management initiative to a large group of employees.

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Starting a chatbot project can seem overwhelming, but following best practices makes the road ahead smoother. Benefit from our team’s experience deploying chatbots with five need-to-know techniques to improve the success of your chatbot implementation.

1. Start with a narrow domain

Don’t try to build Siri. Unless you have a massive budget, and a team of hundreds of engineers, you’re not going to be able to keep up with the likes of Microsoft Cortana, Google Assistant or Siri. Even those teams don’t always get it right.

Even teams with hundreds of engineers don’t get everything right. (Don’t worry, they’ve fixed it.)

Keeping the domain of your chatbot narrow to start and setting your users’ expectations about what the bot can deliver is a realistic way to achieve success. Ideas for a first phase could be a bot that delivers company news, gives information about a conference, provides contact details, or answers questions on a specific subject matter. Later, the chatbot can be expanded to have a wider domain.

Keep the domain of your chatbot narrow at the start

A good example of this is a Tangowork chatbot implemented at international healthcare company Bupa (read the Bupa case study). When Bupa planned to move their headquarters, they created a chatbot to answer questions about the move, like “when are we moving?” or “do I need to pack my own things?”. After the office relocation, they gradually expanded the bot to answer common day-to-day questions, like “where can I print?”, “where do I get a new Skype headset” or “what’s the number for HR?”.

“Before our move to Angel Court, the chatbot focused mainly on the office move: things like ‘when are we moving?’ and ‘do I need to pack my own things?’ After the move, we expanded to questions about day-to-day work in the new environment.”

Del Green

Senior Digital Communications Manager, Bupa

2. Have one killer feature

What answer does your chatbot have that your employees can’t live without? When your chatbot has a feature that keeps employees coming back again and again, they’re going to turn to it as a resource for other information as well.

At Bupa, now that Cyan (the Bupa chatbot) answers questions about day-to-day work, the number one question it gets asked is “What’s the guest wifi password?” Since the password changes frequently, many employees find that the easiest way to get the password for a guest is to ask Cyan.

3. Design failure carefully

You need to intentionally design what failure looks like, because a chatbot is not always going to be able to give a user the answer they are looking for. That happens for several reasons:

  • The chatbot might need more examples to delineate related questions
  • The chatbot might need more training on unexpected terms the employee is using
  • The chatbot doesn’t contain any answers related to the employee’s question

Every response the chatbot gives will fall into one of the four categories on a tool known as the confusion matrix:

  • True positive: the chatbot knows the right answer and delivers it
  • False positive: the chatbot knows the right answer, but delivers an incorrect answer
  • True negative: the chatbot doesn’t know the answer, and says it doesn’t know
  • False negative: the chatbot knows the right answer, but says it doesn’t know

Each possible type of response that the bot might give needs to be considered

Tangowork reduces false positive answers by using a confidence threshold: it only returns an answer if the chatbot is at least 40% sure that it has the correct answer. For answers where Tangowork is 40 to 60% confident, it delivers the answer but then asks the user to confirm whether their question was correctly understood.

It’s good to consider each of these scenarios for your bot, and analyze what the chatbot will do in each case. Because failures (incorrect or unknown answers) are going to occur, designing for failure will result in the best possible outcome when it happens. Make sure that the chatbot is giving the best answer possible in each scenario, and steer the user back to supported tasks when needed.

If a user is asking the chatbot for information that it is not designed to provide, redirecting a user back to supported tasks helps the user know what the chatbot can do for them.

Instead of:

Sorry, I don’t understand. Ask me something else.

Try:

Sorry, I don’t understand. I know things about 
Acme Human Resources policies and benefits. 
Try "benefits", "payroll" or "time off".
4. Grow your pilot gradually

At the beginning, a small team of stakeholders and subject-matter experts brainstorms questions and answers that the chatbot will be fielding. Starting the pilot with 10 or 20 people allows the team to review the conversation transcripts and see questions that weren’t anticipated or that the bot is misunderstanding. They can then teach the bot to handle those questions, expand the pilot by another 10 or 20 people, and repeat the process.

As the pilot grows, the percentage of successful responses climbs higher and higher. If you launch at the very beginning, the number of unsuccessful responses will result in user frustration and failed adoption. Once the success rate is in the 90-95% range, the chatbot is ready to launch to the entire organization.

As the chatbot pilot gradually grows, incorrect responses decrease

Growing your pilot gradually allows for transcript review, chatbot training and greater insight into user needs, for a high conversation success rate on launch.

5. Review transcripts constantly

Reviewing chatbot conversation transcripts is especially important during the pilot period for your chatbot, but it continues to be an important part of general maintenance. Transcript review allows you to see when the chatbot doesn’t understand a message, or doesn’t have the answer a user is looking for. Fine-tuning the bot by adding more information on a topic, or training it to understand a user’s intention in a particular message allows for continuous improvement.

Transcript review pinpoints answers the chatbot is missing, which are added for an increased success rate

Conclusion

Apply these best practices to find success as you enhance your employees’ digital workplace with an informed, responsive chatbot.

Summer Chatbot Webinar Series

In July, August and September, sign up for 3 free webinars that explore 3 types of chatbots: Intranet Chatbots, Event Chatbots, and HR Chatbots.

Tangowork is chatbots for HR, intranets, and internal communications. Help employees instantly, automatically, and 24x7, all from within Skype, Slack, Teams and more.

The post 5 best practices for deploying an employee or HR chatbot appeared first on Tangowork: Chatbots for HR, Intranets, Internal Comms.

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Tangowork v22

July 16, 2018

What’s new: chatbot
  • Buttons with links. Now you can add hyperlink buttons to messages. When the user clicks, they’re redirected to a URL.
  • Messages with non-text. Tangowork now recognizes unsupported messages and responds appropriately. For example, if a user sends a photo, Tangowork responds with “Thanks for the photo. Unfortunately, I only understand text.” Works for audio, video, images, location, and the Messenger “thumbs up” button. Responses are customizable.
What’s new: management console
  • Excel import/export. Add and maintain content via Excel. You can export existing content to a spreadsheet, make changes, then import it again.
  • People import/export. For private bots, add and maintain a list of users via Excel or JSON. It’s ideal for scenarios where automated synchronization via API isn’t possible.
  • Phone number internationalization. Phone numbers are automatically converted to the E.164 standard when they’re added to the system. For example, (604) 555-1212 is converted to +16045551212. This ensures that duplicates are recognized and ensures that SMS messages are delivered. A “Country” preference in “Bot settings” allows Tangowork to infer country code (e.g. “+1”) when none is provided.
  • Default introduction for broadcasts. Set a default introduction for broadcasts, such as “**ACME EMPLOYEE ALERT**”.
  • We’ve changed dialogs so that they can only be closed by clicking a button or by clicking a close icon. Previously, clicking outside the dialog closed it, but that led to inadvertent closures.
Bug fixes
  • The prompt to “Train language model” was occurring too often. Now it’s only appearing when it really needs to.
  • Buttons in messages couldn’t be edited in the management console. Now they can.
Tangowork v21

June 21, 2018

What’s new: management console
  • We completely overhauled working with entities (e.g. in “What is John Doe’s phone number?”, the entity is “John Doe”). Now you can add new entities and tag them within sample questions, all within the management console.
  • Sometimes you need to run custom integrations on a schedule, like for running a nightly import. Now you can.
  • If users ask about a date or time, the “DateTime” prebuilt entity needs to be enabled. Now you can do that yourself in the management console, without asking Tangowork Support.
  • We added a tiny little X to the right-hand side of the search box so you can quickly delete your search term. No more backspace backspace backspace.
  • Now you can instantly change confidence thresholds from within the “Bot settings” page. The default minimum confidence is 40%, but some bots can benefit from dropping it lower. The default confidence for sending user verifications, i.e. “I’m only 45% confident in my answer… did I understand you correctly?” is 60%.
  • We changed the default response setting for new content to “Random” and “No list”. It used to be “Newest” and “List: Cards”, but we found this wasn’t appropriate in the majority of cases.
Bug fixes
  • When you delete content, we used to move sample questions to the “None” category, but that was degrading the accuracy of the AI. Now we just make deleted content vanish, and the AI is much happier.
  • It wasn’t possible to use your iPad to add new content in the management console. We made a few tweaks, and now the iPad compatibility, while not perfect, is much better.
  • We lost the ability to log on to the management console in Safari, but we found it again.
Tangowork v20

May 9, 2018

What’s new: chatbot
  • Messages with buttons. Add any button to any message. Buttons can trigger a certain message, a certain intent, or can send quick-reply text.
What’s new: management console
  • Add custom buttons or triggers to any message. A new “Buttons” option on Add/Edit Message lets you define custom buttons or triggers for any message. In Skype for Business or SMS, buttons don’t display, but the button can down-render to a prompt, such as “Type ‘more’ for more info.”
  • Bot settings screen. The new bot settings screen lets you quickly adjust the appearance of your bot across channels. For example, you can change the color, font and icon for web chat.
  • Manual message ordering. For lists of messages, you can now select manual ordering. Drag and drop messages to sort them how you want.
  • To make room for expanded functionality, the Add/Edit Message screen now uses collapsible cards.
Bug fixes
  • Whenever we displayed Cards in Slack, we were showing action buttons twice — before and after the card. It looked confusing, so we eliminated the first set of buttons.
Tangowork v19

April 2, 2018

What’s new: management console
  • Help. Inline help is now available on every page.
  • Content categories. Create your own categories to organize content.
  • Custom integrations. It is now possible to execute any custom code in response to an intent. For example, a user could type “search for expense form” and Tangowork can execute that search on SharePoint.
  • Previous button. Users can now page through lists of messages using “Next” and “Previous” buttons. This only affects intents where lists are enabled. (Buttons are not supported on Skype for Business or SMS.)
  • Content export. Export Tangowork content. This is designed primarily for exchanging content with other Tangowork installations.
  • Content import. Import Tangowork content. This is designed primarily for exchanging content with other Tangowork installations.
  • Parent & child intents. There is now full support for parent & child (nested) intents. This allows for lists of lists.
Chatbot Tips by Email

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Tangowork is chatbots for HR, intranets, and internal communications. Help employees instantly, automatically, and 24x7, all from within Skype, Slack, Teams and more.

The post Tangowork Release Notes appeared first on Tangowork: Chatbots for HR, Intranets, Internal Comms.

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Intranet Now Conference, London, UK

Intranet Now is a conference for internal communications and intranet professionals, held in London, UK. The fifth year for this annual conference, organized by Wedge Black and Lisa Riemers, focuses on the employee experience throughout the digital workplace.

Tangowork’s Intranet Now event chatbot

Intranet and comms professionals attend the Intranet Now conference to learn how they can improve digital communications and engagement, and to benefit from the experience and expertise of other participants.

In 2017, Tangowork worked with the Intranet Now organizers to set up an event chatbot for the conference. Chatbots were (and still are) an emerging concept for internal communications, and with the Intranet Now chatbot, attendees got first-hand experience in using a chatbot, testing its capabilities, and envisioning how it could work for their organization. The Intranet Now chatbot is available again in 2018 to provide details for potential attendees over the summer and participants on conference day.

The Intranet Now conference chatbot was deployed on Facebook Messenger, as it is the most widely used messaging app in the majority of Western countries, including the UK. Facebook Messenger also allowed for rich functionality, including buttons, photos, carousels, and menus.

Press the play button to watch a real conversation with the Intranet Now event bot

Tangowork’s Professional Services team worked closely with the Intranet Now organizers to populate the backend of the chatbot, programming potential user questions, chatbot responses, and reviewing user-chatbot conversation transcripts to improve the chatbot conversations in real time. In 2017, the chatbot handled questions across 32 different themes, and was programmed with about 400 sample user utterances. Using natural language processing (NLP) — a branch of AI — enabled the chatbot to understand hundreds of thousands of related questions even when asked in slightly differently ways, just by entering those 400 sample utterances.

In its fifth year, Intranet Now focuses on the employee experience throughout the digital workplace.

Gradual chatbot implementation

The Intranet Now chatbot was available via the conference’s Facebook page leading up to the conference, and this allowed for a slow-growing pilot, so-to-speak, as various people discovered the chatbot and tested out its knowledge and capabilities.

The project confirmed for Tangowork the importance of a slow-growing pilot and continuous transcript review. Tangowork has found that even when those who brainstorm possible user requests are intimately familiar with both the subject matter the chatbot is addressing and the end users (in this case, the Intranet Now conference and its participants), users will have additional expectations and unanticipated questions.

This is why a slow-growing pilot, with a gradually increasing number of users, was vital. By making the chatbot available on Intranet Now’s Facebook page in advance of the conference, the increasing usage clearly showed what information people were looking for. Transcript review allowed the Tangowork team to see which user questions were getting incorrect responses from the chatbot, and add new responses to provide the needed information.

Later, continued transcript review on the day of the conference allowed the chatbot to meet attendees’ immediate needs.

Chatbot on conference day

Chris McGrath, founder of Tangowork, had a conference presentation early in the day to introduce the chatbot to attendees who hadn’t already discovered it. People then started using the chatbot more heavily, especially to check out speaker bios and the conference schedule. During the conference, if someone asked the chatbot what presentation was now/next, instead of just delivering the entire conference schedule, the chatbot would look at the current time, and display the next 3 presentations as the result.

An unanticipated request was attendees asking the chatbot where they could charge their phones. Spotting this as part of their live transcript review, the Tangowork Professional Services team quickly added a response so the chatbot was able to provide an answer to the next person who asked.

Chris McGrath introducing the chatbot to attendees

“The Tangowork team was great to work with — they made it effortless to get our own dedicated event chatbot up and running.” Wedge

Founder, IntranetNow

Takeaways for next year

Wedge Black, Intranet Now conference founder, had this to say about Tangowork:

“The Tangowork chatbot for our 2017 Intranet Now conference gave us the means to conveniently provide important event details to our participants, both before and during the conference. At the same time, we were sharing an example of a leading edge technology that internal communicators could experiment with at the conference and take home as a possibility for use in their own organizations. And the Tangowork team was great to work with — they made it effortless to get our own dedicated event chatbot up and running.”

Wedge, Intranet Now

The Intranet Now chatbot was a valuable resource for conference participants, and a learning opportunity in itself, presenting a new potential technology for internal communicators to use. Everything that the Intranet Now chatbot learned at last year’s conference will result in more accurate and successful conversations for this year’s conference.

Visit the Intranet Now Facebook page to learn more about this year’s conference, with the theme: The employee experience throughout the digital workplace. While you’re on their page, you can chat with the Intranet Now conference chatbot, as it preps for Intranet Now 2018.

Summer Chatbot Webinar Series

In July, August and September, sign up for 3 free webinars that explore 3 types of chatbots: Intranet Chatbots, Event Chatbots, and HR Chatbots.

Tangowork is chatbots for HR, intranets, and internal communications. Help employees instantly, automatically, and 24x7, all from within Skype, Slack, Teams and more.

The post Chatbot Case Study: Event Bot for Intranet Now Conference appeared first on Tangowork: Chatbots for HR, Intranets, Internal Comms.

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Join our chatbot webinar series this summer! Each webinar features real chatbots in action and “lessons learned” to help make your chatbot project a success.

Chatbots for Intranets Jul 11, 2018

Learn when a chatbot is better than an intranet — and when it’s not.

Chatbots for Events Aug 8, 2018

Learn how to build an event chatbot and connect with attendees on their phones.

Chatbots for HR Sept 12, 2018

Learn how an HR chatbot can provide automatic, instant answers to HR questions.

Tangowork is chatbots for HR, intranets, and internal communications. Help employees instantly, automatically, and 24x7, all from within Skype, Slack, Teams and more.

The post Chatbot Webinar Series appeared first on Tangowork: Chatbots for HR, Intranets, Internal Comms.

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Would you ask your communications manager to tackle year-end accounting processes? Or maybe require the newest software developer to write blog posts for your company website? Not likely. Why? Because you know the strengths of the individuals in your organization, and how using each person for the right job will get you the best results.

Like people, different types of enterprise software also have their strengths. A key to the success of new software in your digital workplace is ensuring that you use a technology that actually meets your business objectives. Chatbots and intranets are optimized for different uses, so read on to make sure you’re choosing the technology best suited to your use cases.

What is a chatbot?

What is a chatbot? A chatbot is software that communicates with you via messaging apps such as Facebook Messenger, Skype, or SMS. When you message a chatbot, a computer responds. Chatbot content is provided by a human or obtained from another system that already contains the content.

What is a chatbot anyway?

When a chatbot is better than an intranet

Consider seven instances where a chatbot beats an intranet:

1. You have a question, and you want an answer

When you want a quick answer to a question, a chatbot can provide it without requiring you to open an app or website, or traverse any navigation. Type a question to your chatbot in your messaging app, and get an immediate answer without hassle.

When international healthcare company Bupa decided to relocate their London offices, they created a chatbot that would quickly and easily answer employees questions about the move. Read more about their story here.

Read how Bupa’s Move Chatbot answered questions employees needed to know

2. Your messaging app is always open

In companies where everyone already has a messaging app open to communicate with colleagues, it’s simple to start a conversation with a chatbot. Whether it’s Skype for Business, Slack or Facebook Work Chat, a chatbot is right in there with all the other people you touch base with regularly.

Companies with no desk phones mean messaging apps are universal, and chatbots can be too

3. Your internet connection is slow or unstable

Poor internet is no obstacle for a chatbot. The text-based UIs of messaging apps consume very little bandwidth, and chatbots delivered by SMS don’t require internet at all.

4. You don’t know which system has the information you need

Your business may use dozens of systems to keep track of information—intranet, file sharing, ticketing, helpdesk, timesheets, expense reports, CRM, and so on. It can be difficult to keep track of what system contains what information. A chatbot can be integrated to pull the information you need from a variety of systems and deliver it to you within your messaging app.

Chatbots can connect to multiple systems and deliver info you need in one channel.

5. You need push notifications

Push notifications make sure employees get information fast. One study reports that 90% of text messages are read within 3 minutes. Chatbots use messaging apps your employees already have, so there’s no struggle to try to get people to download, upgrade and use a specific intranet app just so you can communicate with them.

Reach 90% within 3 minutes with your info in their messaging app

6. Your hands aren’t available

Have you ever tried to use your intranet without your hands? Chances are, it didn’t work very well. With voice messaging capability, chatbots can also be voicebots—invaluable for getting information to someone busy operating machinery, helping a patient, or working in a cleanroom.

Workers can obtain information by voice request when unable to use their hands to chat or navigate an intranet

7. You think intranets are hard to use

To find a specific piece of information among a vast network of intranet pages might be more of a challenge than your average user can handle. Nielsen Norman Group analyzed a study that indicated that almost 70% of people in 33 rich countries have poor to non-existent computer skills. As strong computer users, we tend to overestimate people’s computer skills. The majority may not be able to navigate a complex intranet, but everyone understands the conversational UI of a chatbot. If you know how to talk and how to type, you know how to use a chatbot.

The vast majority of workers don’t have strong computer skills…

…but everyone understands the conversational messaging interface

When an intranet is better than a chatbot

Intranets have their strengths in the following situations:

1. You’re not sure what you’re looking for

If you’re browsing for something and you don’t know exactly what it is, but you think you’ll know it when you see it, an intranet is a better medium for your search than a chatbot.

2. You need long-form content

Chatbots force brevity. Some content, however, just isn’t meant to be short. Policies, procedures and contracts can be tens and hundreds of pages long, and that quantity just can’t be communicated via chatbot.

Some content is too long to be communicated effectively using a chatbot

3. You want to “see what’s happening”

If you want to browse around to find out what’s happening in your company, see what other people are working on or being recognized for, and serendipitously discover new things, head to the intranet. Chatbots are high on answers, but low on serendipity. (That said, the more personality you give your chatbot, the more serendipitous it can feel.)

An intranet allows you to serendipitously discover what’s going on

4. You need a full graphical user interface

The text interface of a chatbot is limited; it doesn’t allow you to do things like edit spreadsheets or videos. Many actions will continue to require a full GUI, so some tasks are best kept on the intranet.

Certain tasks require a full graphical UI

Intranet or chatbot? It’s not either/or

When examining which is better, a chatbot or an intranet, it becomes clear that both technologies have their strengths. The good news is that it isn’t an either/or scenario, the strengths can be leveraged by using both mediums. A chatbot can complement and even strengthen an intranet by making intranet search results available within the chatbot. Workers already in the messaging app can use it to access valuable intranet content.

Intranet search results can be made available with a chatbot—see how

Chatbots are the future

Intranets are already widely used in enterprise and chatbot use is expanding rapidly. Easy, useful, intuitive chatbots will be a major factor in everyone’s digital workplace in the near future. Investigate now how to leverage the strengths of chatbots in your organization.

We share what we’ve learned from deploying chatbots in an upcoming webinar, “Chatbots vs. Intranets“. Register now.

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The post When a chatbot is better than an intranet—and when it’s not appeared first on Tangowork: Chatbots for HR, Intranets, Internal Comms.

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Many organizations that adopt Slack see it used very heavily by certain employees. This directly impacts intranet usage. In Slack-heavy organizations, many employees are using the intranet less frequently, if not forgetting about it altogether.

Rather than trying to reverse this behavior, some internal comms teams are working to accommodate it. Over the last few weeks, we’ve worked with an organization to bring their intranet into Slack by means of a chatbot.

The core of the Slack/Intranet integration is a Tangowork chatbot that understands normal language. When the user types a question in Slack, first the chatbot looks to see if it’s a common question with a curated answer, such as “When’s payday?” or “How do I file an expense report?” If there’s no curated answer, the query is sent to the intranet search engine, and the intranet search results are presented within Slack. The user can either read the content in Slack, or follow a link to the actual intranet. Watch a brief demo on YouTube:

Intranet on Slack via Chatbot - YouTube

Our intranet connector works with any intranet that has an API, but so far we’ve built examples for Igloo, SharePoint and Google G Suite. In addition to Slack, other messaging apps are supported, including Skype for Business, Teams, and Work Chat by Facebook.

The ultimate intranet makes the right content available, at the right time, in the right place. Making intranets available over the cloud and on mobile is a good step in this direction. But as Slack becomes the center of activity for many employees, making the intranet available from there is the next natural progression towards a ubiquitous intranet.

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Tangowork is chatbots for internal communications. Send communications where you know your staff will see them: in their messaging app.

The post Make your intranet available on Slack with a Tangowork chatbot appeared first on Tangowork: Chatbots for Internal Communications.

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