Today I’m excited to announce that Smartsheet has acquired Converse.AI, a UK-based pioneer in the field of intelligent bots for business automation.
Here at Smartsheet, we’re committed to our founding philosophy of “practical innovation” — empowering knowledge workers to build and manage powerful business process and automation solutions, regardless of their technical prowess. Converse.AI shares our vision of enabling enterprises to address business-critical problems through ‘no code’ work process automation.
The Power of Converse.AI Chatflow Technology
Converse.AI understands how businesses want to benefit from technology. The Converse.AI Chatflow technology, launched in 2016, is a workflow orchestration engine that enables business users to easily build and manage bots via a drag-and-drop interface — without writing any code.
While most chatbot solutions simply mimic human interactions, Converse.AI takes chat a step further. Their industry-leading ‘Chatflow’ technology enables workflow automation and data exchange between the human and the bot, while also touching system data, meaning that chat users have the ability to make automatic updates on the back-end of the software. One example of how this could work with Smartsheet in the future is that a bot could walk a user through questions in chat while automatically populating a Smartsheet form or sheet.
Accelerate Innovation in Your Organization
With the new capabilities Converse.AI provides, Smartsheet customers will be empowered with new natural language user experiences and business process automation that can link across popular messaging platforms and business systems like Slack, Workplace by Facebook, Salesforce, Google, Vonage, Hubspot, and PayPal.
We’ll also use the Converse.AI chat flow engine to complement and accelerate our work process automation roadmap, creating new ways for customers to accelerate work execution and innovation.
Our acquisition of Converse.AI will support Smartsheet customers in three major ways:
- Accelerate natural language user experiences and conversational business process automation from within Smartsheet.
- Eventually enable Smartsheet users to build and manage business process automations within Smartsheet using Converse.AI “Chatflow” technology, without requiring business users to code.
- Empower partners and customers to build their own integrations and capabilities on top of the Smartsheet platform using Converse.AI technology, allowing for faster innovation.
What Happens Next: Integrating Converse.AI Technology Into Smartsheet
In the coming months, you’ll see us integrating the Converse.AI conversational workflow and natural language processing capabilities into the Smartsheet platform. This will help us provide customers with more business process scenarios and will enable our customers to accelerate work execution in a more intelligent and natural way—through conversation.
Here are a few examples of what those integrations might look like as we continue to enable organizations to address significant business problems:
- Safety Reporting - Field workers easily submit safety issues including descriptions, photos and location data through a chatbot interface into Smartsheet where they will be logged and then acted upon through either automated or human interaction, based on severity, type, location, or other factors.
- Onboarding - New employees can automatically be sent information, asked for feedback, and taken through company onboarding processes, with all relevant data sent to HR and other teams as appropriate.
- Project Visibility - Through an integration with Amazon Alexa or Google Home, a user could use voice activation to get an update on which projects are on track and which are at risk in Smartsheet.
The entire Converse.AI team, including founders Tony Lucas and Gihan Munasinghe, will stay intact as a wholly-owned subsidiary that will roll up under Smartsheet. I look forward to seeing what we can accomplish together for our customers.