Cognitive Enterprise

Cognitive technology reduces training time and costs

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Imagine what would happen if you decreased your customer support training time by 96 percent. What would that mean for your business? That’s exactly what happened when Volume Ltd. switched to using the IBM Watson™ Conversation API to help deliver training for their employees. The time to conduct training to team members that support Volume’s applications dropped from one hour to two minutes.

Based in the heart of the UK’s Silicon Valley, Volume Ltd. began as a business-to-business marketing services agency that provides digital content and customized technologies. The company was looking for ways to optimize their existing applications to help their customers speed processes, boost revenue and improve productivity.

Volume, Ltd. CEO, Chris Sykes, had the opportunity to see IBM Watson in action, which inspired him to use cognitive technology to improve one of their customer’s sales training solutions. He said, “By making the Cognitive Virtual Consultant, we could negate the need to create and update precompiled training content and instead build a know-as-you-go platform.”

Volume built a prototype of the Virtual Consultant application in just 45 days. When they relaunched the Virtual Consultant application in mid-2015, it was the first cognitive learning platform and sales optimization application in the market. Inspired by that success, they founded the Volume.XO Centre of Excellence for Artificial Intelligence, Cognitive Computing Machine Learning and Humanoid Robotics, which has developed applications for other clients. Castrol’s Technical Advisor, for example, is a virtual assistant that uses the Watson Natural Language Classifier and other services to answer common questions from Castrol’s customers and distributors. By having the cognitive Technical Advisor answer the simpler, more repetitive questions, Castrol’s Technical Solution Experts can focus on the questions that are more challenging.

In addition to the application for Castrol, Volume has created two solutions that use IBM Watson application programming interfaces (APIs) in different ways. Susy™ is a cognitive employee well-being application that is being tested internally. It includes a cognitive conversational interface so people can engage with it using text or voice in natural language.

Volume’s second application, the Digital Concierge®, transforms the Volume website into a cognitive website, so visitors can interact using voice or text. You can see the Digital Concierge in action at

Innovative applications using Watson have helped Volume advance its reputation in cognitive computing, allowing the company to be seen as a leading pioneer in AI and cognitive computing. For more information about how Volume used Watson APIs, read the case study.

Senior Writer, IBM Watson

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