Crisis communication: the benefits of a chatbot

crisis communication employee chatbot

The current situation is completely unprecedented. A large part of the population is under lockdown, forced to work remotely, temporarily laid off or on reduced hours. Another part of the population is out in the field, but in unusual working, transportation and environmental conditions. Business has been drastically reduced for some companies and administrations (for example the travel, leisure or transport industry), while others are struggling to cope with an increase in demand (retail, e-commerce, health and home-schooling services, etc.).

Staying in touch with customers and employees, informing them of the availability of services in real time – especially when things can change from hour to hour – is essential, whether to respond to changes in demand, or to maintain a vital link while waiting for a return to normal. The challenge is to ensure continuity of business, and constant communication with stakeholders (informing, reassuring and processing requests).

Implementing a chatbot to handle recurring incoming enquiries is particularly effective during a crisis. Read on to find out why.

A chatbot to best assist your customers

Whether deployed on your internet site, mobile app or instant messenger, conversational robots can quickly process simple customer questions and requests.

During a crisis, solicitations skyrocket and most customer services or call-centres are unable to absorb all the incoming requests. As a result, agents are overwhelmed, there are long queues, customers are dissatisfied and a company’s image can suffer (negative comments, tweets, Facebook messages, etc.).

Chatbots cannot answer all customer requests, but they are the best way to deal with a large number of incoming questions, for various reasons:

  • they are available on all your communication channels 24/7
  • they provide customers with instant and consistent answers 
  • they are agile; companies can add new questions about the crisis in just a few clicks, and edit their answers as the situation evolves
  • they relieve pressure on customer service teams, freeing up time for agents to handle more complex requests. You can avoid 80% of solicitations by covering 20% of the most frequently asked questions. A chatbot does not have to answer everything to be effective.

A chatbot to answer your employees’ questions

Internal chatbots, and HR bots in particular, have proven to be particularly useful during lockdown because forced remote working, especially in times of uncertainty, can raise many questions among employees.

HR chatbots, just like customer service chatbots, can instantly address your employees’ enquiries from their homes; remote working (hours, tools, obligations), temporary lay-offs or short-time working, wages and employee benefits (leave, lunch vouchers, retirement, transportation), childcare, sick leave, etc. The advantage of a bot is that questions and answers can be instantly updated as the situation evolves.

communication officer
Lucie Choulet
Communications officer