Inform Communications Ltd

A.I. enabled Chatbot, IVR and Voice Local Government Specialists

Artificially Intelligent, NLP services designed specifically for UK local government and public sector. Seamless, omni-channel continuity across telephony, IVR, voice, email, mobile apps, SMS, chatbots, virtual agents, social-media and Alexa/Google Home channels for enhanced customer service. Integration with client systems. Inform can build and manage services or clients can self-manage.

Features

  • Seamless continuity across Telephony, SMS, mobile-apps, webchat, social media, Alexa.
  • Personalised library of proven process maps and scripts
  • All production elements including voicing, editing and programming by Inform
  • Customer voice files transcribed and transmitted in compatible formats
  • Comprehensive reporting and analytics dashboard tracks usage and performance
  • Integration with front and back office systems
  • SMS with embedded urls used throughout IVR to promote channel-shift
  • ASR, NLP and CLI recognition to enhance customer experience
  • Chatbots feature Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Natural Language Processing
  • 24/7/365 fully hosted and managed or self-managed services

Benefits

  • Seamless continuity across Telephony, SMS, mobile-apps, chatbot, social-media, Alexa channels
  • Bespoke services built in 6 - 12 weeks
  • Services typically resolve 50% of enquiries without live agent assistance
  • Fully hosted service works seamlessly with existing infrastructure
  • Releases FTE's from simple, repetitive tasks with associated savings
  • Actively promotes and enables channel-shift from telephone and email
  • Increases capacity within contact centre without increasing headcount
  • Provides comprehensive customer service 24/7/365
  • Minimal input required from client operational and technical teams
  • Proven cost and efficiency savings

Pricing

£450 a unit a month

  • Education pricing available
  • Free trial available

Service documents

Framework

G-Cloud 12

Service ID

1 5 5 7 5 1 5 0 4 9 6 7 8 1 0

Contact

Inform Communications Ltd Chris Owen
Telephone: 01344 595800
Email: customerservices@inform-comms.co.uk

Service scope

Software add-on or extension
Yes, but can also be used as a standalone service
What software services is the service an extension to
Seamless continuity / integration with Telephony, Social Media (Facebook Messenger, Twitter, WhatsApp), Skype, Microsoft Teams, Slack, SMS, Email, Smart Devices (Alexa, Google Home), Live Chat, CRM's and back office systems (Firmstep, Northgate, Dynamics and more)
Cloud deployment model
Private cloud
Service constraints
Occasional planned maintenance. This is always carried out during off-peak periods with a minimum of 1 week's notice.
Access to the services is dependent upon:
Telephone and SMS services: Third party mobile and fixed line network availability.
Mobile App, email, chatbot and social media services: Third party internet availability
System requirements
  • Chatbots, email Alexa/Google Home require Internet connection
  • Optional API access to client front/back office systems
  • Optional access to clients social media platforms
  • Ability to redirect enquires to the Inform 360 platform
  • Telephony, SMS services require mobile or land line network

User support

Email or online ticketing support
Email or online ticketing
Support response times
General client support requirements are responded to within 1 hour Monday to Friday 8am to 5pm excluding bank holidays. Emergency support requests are responded to within 15 minutes 24/7/365
User can manage status and priority of support tickets
No
Phone support
Yes
Phone support availability
24 hours, 7 days a week
Web chat support
Web chat
Web chat support availability
24 hours, 7 days a week
Web chat support accessibility standard
WCAG 2.1 AAA
Web chat accessibility testing
None currently but testing is planned with clients for Autumn 2020
Onsite support
Yes, at extra cost
Support levels
Our Customer Services and Technical Services Teams provide general customer support from 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday within the standard service charges. Emergency support is available 24/7/365 at no additional cost. In addition every client has a dedicated account manager. Services are automatically monitored 24/7/365 and the technical and client support teams are alerted in the event of any system downtime. Remote training is available by telephone during normal office hours. Bespoke on site training and support is also available. Charges of £450-£850 per day are dependent on requirements.
Support available to third parties
Yes

Onboarding and offboarding

Getting started
After customisation of the services has been completed after full client liaison, the initial service set up is performed by Inform and this includes: Telephone / IVR: Recording, editing and publishing of all voice files (these can also be supplied by the client if required)
Mobile web, Email, chatbot and social media services: creation of bespoke front end interfaces.
Programming of all software systems.
Interrogation of and integration with client front and back end services via API and / or file access.
Building of bespoke data collection, transcription and transmission services.
Because all creation and maintenance of the services are performed by Inform's Customer Service and Technical Teams, minimal training is required for client operational and technical personnel. Bespoke training notes and sessions are available on request.
Clients can also be given secure administration rights to build, add or change content.
Service documentation
Yes
Documentation formats
  • HTML
  • PDF
  • Other
Other documentation formats
Microsoft Word
End-of-contract data extraction
Clients can specify any data they wish to retain / receive. Inform then removes and deletes all client and customer data from the system on the expiration of the contract.
End-of-contract process
At the end of the contract all client and customer data is removed from the system and deleted by Inform and the chosen services cannot be accessed by either clients or customers. There are no financial implications associated with ending the contract in accordance with the Terms and Conditions

Using the service

Web browser interface
Yes
Supported browsers
  • Internet Explorer 11
  • Microsoft Edge
  • Firefox
  • Chrome
  • Safari 9+
  • Opera
Application to install
No
Designed for use on mobile devices
Yes
Differences between the mobile and desktop service
Telephone / IVR / voice services can work on mobile, land line and desktop devices with identical functionality.
Chatbot, live chat, social media and email services: full functionality is available on both mobile and desktop devices with the exception of the camera which is not available on desktops. However, desktop devices are able to attach photographs from a library. The user interface is optimised for each mobile device
Service interface
Yes
Description of service interface
Telephone and Smart device (Alexa/Google Home) users are greeted and guided through a personalised, automated audio script. Chatbot, Social Media, SMS and email users are greeted and guided via visual prompts, short cut buttons and / or free text.
Accessibility standards
WCAG 2.1 AAA
Accessibility testing
Full User Acceptance testing (UAT) carried out by clients
API
Yes
What users can and can't do using the API
Our API sends data from our range of AI enabled telephony and chat channels to our cloud knowledge base / chatbot platform
Further information is available on request
API documentation
Yes
API documentation formats
  • HTML
  • PDF
API sandbox or test environment
Yes
Customisation available
Yes
Description of customisation
Telephony and Chatbot service content, links and structure - all services are based on proven, best practice templates and scripts that have been developed over many years and honed by many millions of enquiries.
Inform's Customer Service Team then works with clients to customise the content and structure to ensure they meet their own unique requirements.
All initial build and ongoing changes are performed by the Inform Customer Service and Technical Teams including a choice of different voices / accents / languages for our telephony and voice services.
Clients can also be given administration rights to build their own services, add or change content themselves.
Chatbot appearance - window size, name, logo, colour, images etc. can be customised to match client's website.

Scaling

Independence of resources
UK based dual-site, load balanced Data Centres with ring-fenced resources ensure fully scalable capacity.

Analytics

Service usage metrics
Yes
Metrics types
Comprehensive data on inbound and outbound usage across all chosen services / channels is available on the secure on-line portal. This includes real time information on volumes of enquiries, the customer journey through the services and where customers need / choose to transfer to an advisor. The portal also shows those enquiries that have been successfully resolved and those that have not been understood or resolved where Machine Learning is deployed to plug knowledge gaps.
For telephone / IVR services, the duration of calls is also shown. Clients can also access a range of bespoke reports directly from the portal.
Reporting types
  • Real-time dashboards
  • Reports on request

Resellers

Supplier type
Not a reseller

Staff security

Staff security clearance
Other security clearance
Government security clearance
Up to Baseline Personnel Security Standard (BPSS)

Asset protection

Knowledge of data storage and processing locations
Yes
Data storage and processing locations
United Kingdom
User control over data storage and processing locations
Yes
Datacentre security standards
Complies with a recognised standard (for example CSA CCM version 3.0)
Penetration testing frequency
At least once a year
Penetration testing approach
In-house
Protecting data at rest
  • Physical access control, complying with CSA CCM v3.0
  • Physical access control, complying with SSAE-16 / ISAE 3402
  • Physical access control, complying with another standard
Data sanitisation process
Yes
Data sanitisation type
  • Explicit overwriting of storage before reallocation
  • Deleted data can’t be directly accessed
Equipment disposal approach
Complying with a recognised standard, for example CSA CCM v.30, CAS (Sanitisation) or ISO/IEC 27001

Data importing and exporting

Data export approach
All customer data collected on the services is exported to the client by Inform in the clients chosen format and encryption in full compliance with GDPR. The data is also available on the client administration portal.
Where required and available, customer data can be loaded directly into client electronic forms.
Data export formats
  • CSV
  • Other
Other data export formats
  • Pdf
  • Text
  • Json
  • Html
  • Xml
  • Tiff
  • Xls
  • Other bespoke formats available on request
Data import formats
  • CSV
  • Other
Other data import formats
  • HTML
  • Json
  • Pdf
  • Text
  • Xml
  • Tiff
  • Xls
  • Other bespoke formats available on request

Data-in-transit protection

Data protection between buyer and supplier networks
  • Private network or public sector network
  • TLS (version 1.2 or above)
  • Bonded fibre optic connections
  • Legacy SSL and TLS (under version 1.2)
Data protection within supplier network
  • TLS (version 1.2 or above)
  • Legacy SSL and TLS (under version 1.2)

Availability and resilience

Guaranteed availability
We have a comprehensive SLA guaranteeing 99% availability. Refunds of service charges are based on 1% of monthly service charges for every 30 minutes of service downtime.
Approach to resilience
We have full UK based dual site resilience. Full details available on request.
Outage reporting
SMS, email and telephone alerts.

Identity and authentication

User authentication needed
Yes
User authentication
  • Public key authentication (including by TLS client certificate)
  • Username or password
Access restrictions in management interfaces and support channels
User name and password
Access restriction testing frequency
At least once a year
Management access authentication
Username or password

Audit information for users

Access to user activity audit information
Users have access to real-time audit information
How long user audit data is stored for
User-defined
Access to supplier activity audit information
Users contact the support team to get audit information
How long supplier audit data is stored for
User-defined
How long system logs are stored for
User-defined

Standards and certifications

ISO/IEC 27001 certification
Yes
Who accredited the ISO/IEC 27001
British Assessment Bureau Ltd
ISO/IEC 27001 accreditation date
06/07/2018
What the ISO/IEC 27001 doesn’t cover
Third party systems covered by their own security protocol
ISO 28000:2007 certification
No
CSA STAR certification
No
PCI certification
No
Other security certifications
No

Security governance

Named board-level person responsible for service security
Yes
Security governance certified
Yes
Security governance standards
ISO/IEC 27001
Information security policies and processes
This an extensive, confidential document and is available on request

Operational security

Configuration and change management standard
Supplier-defined controls
Configuration and change management approach
There are comprehensive, confidential implementation / configuration and change management procedures that have been honed over our 30 year history of supplying and maintaining secure managed and hosted services. These are available on request.
Vulnerability management type
Supplier-defined controls
Vulnerability management approach
An automated monitoring system tests the service 24/7/365 and alerts users and management via sms and email alerts. Patches / fixes are deployed asap depending upon the nature of the required fix.
Protective monitoring type
Supplier-defined controls
Protective monitoring approach
An automated monitoring system tests the service 24/7/365 and alerts management via SMS email alerts. Patches / fixes are deployed asap depending upon the nature of the required fix.
We are using a Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) product​ ​that​ ​provides​ us​ with a feature-rich SIEM complete with event collection, normalisation and correlation​. We react according to the threat identified and deal with ​the threat asap.
Incident management type
Supplier-defined controls
Incident management approach
Clients are informed of planned maintenance events at least one week in advance.
Users report incidents via our ticketing system and email
Where required, Root Cause Analysis (RCA) reports are provided via email within 5 working days of the event.

Secure development

Approach to secure software development best practice
Independent review of processes (for example CESG CPA Build Standard, ISO/IEC 27034, ISO/IEC 27001 or CSA CCM v3.0)

Public sector networks

Connection to public sector networks
No

Pricing

Price
£450 a unit a month
Discount for educational organisations
Yes
Free trial available
Yes
Description of free trial
A 3 month chatbot service in one service area with an unlimited number of intents is available as a free trial. Unlimited usage of the chatbot is included via Webchat and Facebook Messenger channels. Additional channels are not included.

Service documents