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author's profile photo Jeremy Good

Valentine's Day - is ABAP one of the 5 Love Languages?

I've been sitting on this screen capture for a few weeks, and pondering how I could use some humor or sarcasm to stimulate some CC chatter here in the community. Well...with all the Love in the air on Valentine's Day, it made me think about the language of Love, or perhaps love languages, since in my chatbot session shown below we were clearly not on the same page...

If you are not familiar with Love Languages, I've included a handy direct Google search link where you can see the book by Gary Chapman, as well as online quizzes and other ways to learn more.

I mentioned that I was trying to stimulate some CC chatter, and by no means was I trying to overshare or prompt people to divulge any personal secrets about themselves. My interest is to get your perspective on chatbots. The image above was captured from our internal SAP employee instance of the Fiori launchpad, and the tile for online payslips was missing, so I decided to try out CoPilot. Clearly I didn't offer much in a form of a question or any details with my opening remark, but then after turning timesheet into time sheet, my snarky nature took over and I quickly realized that my chatbot wanted to converse in ABAP :)

So...have you had any interesting experiences with chatbots in the past, or have general thoughts/opinions on the topic? Inquiring minds like mine want to know.

copilot.jpg (56.2 kB)
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  • Feb 14, 2019 at 07:40 PM

    You forgot to start with "dear gurus", Jeremy. :)

    I don't have a blind hate towards chatbots or any other bots but I feel they just don't work very well (yet?).

    Not exactly a chat but a related experience. My kid is very tall and has proportionately large feet, so he's always 1-2 sizes ahead of same age kids. He does not do well with shoe laces but, unfortunately, after the toddler sizes the shoes with velcro closures are very hard to find. In my naivety, I thought I'd inform our preferred shoe vendor at the time (Puma) of this issue.

    So I found their customer service email and wrote a short message how our kid really likes their shoes but struggles with shoe laces and would they please make velcro shoes in big kid sizes too. (Because they're not always worn by the actual "big kids".)

    The reply I received was rather odd, it basically offered me to return the shoes. Befuddled, I replied and reiterated that I'm happy with current shoes but can't find any larger sizes with velcro. Got similar reply again. Based on the verbiage, I realized then that there was no "Lisa, Regional Sales Manager" replying to my emails but a simple bot picking the keywords and sending back brush-off replies. (It's probably the same kind of bot employed by SAP Support - ba-dum tss! :) )

    Long story short, Puma lost a customer.

    • Feb 14, 2019 at 08:21 PM

      Given the choices between a phone call, a chat session queue, or generic form contact us form, I prefer the chat session because it allows more multi-tasking in the wait time (and without annoying music or repetitive phrases about the wait time). If the chat session starts with some form of AI or chatbot help to route me to the correct department, like the 'please listen to the following menu options...' phone attendants menus, then that can be very helpful to avoid being bounced around from one person to another. However, with phone menus and some chatbots, the scripted list of supported items is lost on me because I would go straight into the mobile app or the browser to find out an account balance, or check a statement due date. There would be no reason for me to play 20 questions to get information that is available on demand. I am fully confident that in due time and with the right machine learning algorithms the bots will get smarter and be more capable of accurately processing requests, or even anticipating my needs, but until that time it will keep us amused like this hilarious SNL skit.

      • Feb 15, 2019 at 04:17 PM
        with phone menus and some chatbots, the scripted list of supported items
         is lost on me because I would go straight into the mobile app or the 
        browser to find out an account balance, or check a statement due date.

        Exactly. Those menus are just so annoying. Why would I call to find something I can easily find online in less time than it takes to go through the stupid menu? If I've bothered to find your phone number and call it then it's because I need an assistance that is not available through the website.

        Double negative points for the menus that condescendingly direct you to "double-ya-double-ya-double-ya-dot...". Like "Oh my goodness, I did not know that! Let me just get my ink and feather and write this down... What were you saying, dearie? Double-ya what?" Arrrrgh...

        P.S. "Allegra! ... I don't know about that." LOL :)

      • Feb 18, 2019 at 05:38 PM

        The phone menus are so long because there are still many people, like my 84 year-old mother in law, who either don't know how to use a computer or don't care to. They need the help to get to the information they're looking for. So, we all have to suffer through the long menus.


        • Feb 18, 2019 at 08:30 PM

          This is very true Dell, and I wasn't overlooking the use case, but I don't expect your mother in law (or my father in law) to chime in here with my target audience of the CC ;) I was attempting to draw some parallels to the current maturity of how chatbots operate with very scripted routines and/or programmatic menu-style responses, and stimulate a discussion where we could mix some fun experiences we've had along with opinions or outlook on where it goes from here.

          • Feb 18, 2019 at 08:51 PM


            I know, but I was responding to Jelena's question, "Why would I call to find something I can easily find online in less time than it takes to go through the stupid menu?"

            The chatbots sometimes remind me of the old "game" Eliza where it would ask questions that required yes or no answers and if it got to the end of it's "tree" of responses would ask for a question that would identify what you were thinking of.

    • Feb 14, 2019 at 09:11 PM

      I wouldn't be that certain it was a bot that was replying.

      based on my experience.

  • Apr 04, 2019 at 05:17 PM

    I had some recent chat bot interactions - not CoPilot this time, but I have mixed levels of success. After a long initial sentence, I must have put enough trigger words or phrases into it to make the green one available for selection, which then put me into a successful routine for logging a ticket - success :) Now I wait for my ticket to process...

    Taking the advice to shorten my text (even though it was successful), I tried again, and this one (the chatbot name is cute isn't IT?) This time the chatbot didn't understand me...

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