Founded 2016 | HQ Milton Keynes, UK | 25 employees | <$1M annual revenue
Cloudhub360 may be a classic case of the sum of the parts being greater than the whole. The combination of conversational AI and intelligent data processing is what makes the Cloudhub360 platform well-suited to any customer service process where document processing is involved.
Cloudhub360 is a UK-based start-up that calls itself “the intelligent automation specialist creating a truly digital workforce and competing in the Hyper Automation market.” That buzzword-loaded description left us wondering exactly what they do.
What the company has done, we found out, is to create a unique cloud software stack combining its own cognitive capture and conversational AI intellectual property. We have not seen this combination before in one platform. It has the potential to inspire innovative business solutions at the intersection of these two (typically separate) technologies.
Founded in 2016 by entrepreneurs from capture leaders such as Kofax, Cloudhub360 has put in the hard R&D work and now has several software products ready for deployment.
The company’s business model is to sell API microservices to OEMs and system integrators who will then create vertical business solutions. Cloudhub360 recently signed up a leading UK system integrator for the government sector. Currently active in the UK and UAE markets, the company plans to expand in the EU and US this year.
Cloudhub360 uses machine learning (ML), natural language processing (NLP) and conversational AI to develop the two main product lines in its platform: Intelligent Document Processing (IDP) and Conversational AI (CAI).
Intelligent Document Processing
Waives is Cloudhub360’s IDP offering. While the company was early to market with a cloud-native solution, others have since caught up. However, its edge in cloud experience should make for a smoother implementation than with newer offerings.
Waives does pretty much everything you would expect from a document capture product. Each function is a microservice. Use whatever piece you need, when you need it, and pay only for what you use. Available functions include:
- Classification of documents based on their content, with ML to reduce configuration time and to fine-tune the performance during production.
- Data extraction using Google OCR or your choice of OCR plugin.
- Validation of data using standard lookups and Human in the Loop inspection.
- Markup and redaction of sensitive data on an image.
Waives is a public cloud service consisting of several microservices with REST APIs. It can be embedded into applications to extend core capabilities, run independently for stand-alone applications, or integrated as part of the Cloudhub360 platform. Waives uses the Kubernetes microservices platform for containerization and orchestration and the Kibana dashboard for process monitoring, and it comes standard with MongoDB support.
The cost of entry for a customer is low, opening this service for use by small businesses that were typically priced out of cognitive capture. The base service can be run on Azure for as little as $300 per month. The company also claims that Waives can process invoices at
only 5 pence (7 cents) each, with no extra software costs.
Conversational AI is the set of technologies behind automated messaging that offer people human-like interactions with computers. Most of us already encounter this AI several times a day on any website using chatbots as the front line of customer service. It helps people interact with complex systems in faster and easier ways, and helps businesses deliver personalized engagements and support at scale.
Askelie is Cloudhub360’s conversational AI product. Elie stands for Ever Learning Intelligent Engine. Whatever you call it, the company insists you not call Askelie a chatbot because it does so much more. We’re fine with that request, but the company has a branding challenge ahead to persuade the rest of the market.
Askelie provides intelligent 24×7 self-service communication to help businesses automate front-end staff and customer- and supplier-facing services. In this way, they can bridge the gap between “contact and conclusion,” increase efficiency, improve KPIs and drive innovation for a better customer experience.
Using a combination of NLP, ML, and other language technologies, Askelie can process and contextualize the written word. It then applies AI to recommend the best course to handle and respond to a customer’s input and take the appropriate action.
Conversational AI + Cognitive Capture = “Capture BOT”
The real magic of Cloudhub360 happens when you combine CAI and IDP. The company showed us a demo of an insurance claims portal with Askelie embedded.
A customer had an auto accident and needs to file a claim; this is a common process repeated many times daily around the globe. The process begins like any other claims chatbot. “Hi, how are you? What is your name and policy number? How can I help you today? A claim? Yes I can help. Let’s begin.”
Then it gets interesting. To verify the customer’s identity, Askelie asks the customer to upload a driver’s license photo. Askelie reads it and validates that this is indeed the driver on the policy. Next, the customer is asked to upload a photo showing the damage (see Figure 1). Askelie then auto-completes the claims form. The claim is approved in under a minute and a payment is scheduled.
What used to involve 2-3 contacts and multiple documents sent over several days is reduced to a matter of minutes. This is a good example of AI making life a bit easier.
Next Cloudhub360 showed a contract management portal with Askelie embedded. A lawyer can submit any question using natural language queries. Under the hood, the Waives engine finds the contract, extracts the relevant data, and returns the answer as well as the document.
Cloudhub360 may be a classic case of the sum of the parts being greater than the whole. The individual services are competent, but each respective market field is already crowded with competitors. It is the combination of CAI and IDP that makes the Cloudhub360 platform well-suited to any customer service process where document processing is involved.
Yes, given enough developers and enough time one could create one’s own “Capture BOT” from best-of-breed services. But why bother, if a vendor like Cloudhub360 has already done the work for you and has a competitive pricing model? Adding a chatbot that can reliably read documents is as easy as integrating the platform into your portal.
If the team can stay focused and execute on its strategy, we think it has a bright future because businesses are stampeding to move customer-facing interactions over to self-service AI platforms. When a chatbot can also process unstructured documents on the chat, any business can further reduce the Human in the Loop ratio and make customers very happy with speedy resolution of their problems.
Advice to Buyers
Any business with customer-facing portals should at least request a demo of Askelie. Insurance claim processing is a low-hanging fruit. Government portals of all types, medical care management, and loan origination are other processes that could benefit from Askelie.
The company is small but managed by an experienced team with a good reputation, and it promises to supply solid customer references.
- Fully integrated CAI and IDP out of the (microservices) box
- Ability to quickly demo within any portal
- Add voice recognition to Askelie
- Expand into other regions
- Could “own” a vertical industry application
- Sell to ISVs and OEMs
- Products launched and in the market
- Several customers already in production