Council launches website chatbot

Published: 18 December 2018

Questions on your bin collections over Christmas are now being answered by artificial intelligence in Redbridge.

A chatbot has been launched by the council to answer residents’ queries about their festive recycling and waste collections online.

The ‘virtual assistant’ can answer queries quickly while freeing up customer service staff to deal with more complex queries.

The trial is part of Customer Voice – a major initiative from the council to ensure it is listening and designing services around its customers.

If a success, the technology will be rolled out to provide information on other services important to residents.

Cabinet Member for Transformation and Engagement Cllr Helen Coomb said: “This innovative project is all about improving customer experience and choice.  The chatbot provides a simple, quick and accessible route to find the information people want on their mobile, laptop or computer.  It avoids the need for contact on the phone and frees up our busy customer service team to concentrate or more complex issues and questions that residents raise with us.  If it proves a hit with our customers, we will be looking at using the technology to answer questions about other services.”

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