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Today we announced a truly unique AI-powered ‘translator’ to prevent cultural misunderstandings in business

Posted by  Stephan Sieber

We are excited to announce a new and truly unique Wanda assistant designed to boost people productivity by preventing the cultural misunderstandings that occur in multinational teams. Wanda is Unit4’s enterprise digital assistant released early last year.

As a multinational organization working for people centric industries, we focus on people and how well they work together. We have been looking at ways to improve the way they communicate, to avoid the misunderstandings that commonly occur between colleagues.

Through powerful AI technology, it has been taught to recognize language hurdles and cultural differences and ensures what people say is interpreted accurately. Initial results speak for themselves and colleagues say they have avoided many misunderstandings and been able to arrive at conclusions more quickly. Our people have become more productive.

EasySpeak has been programmed with thousands of assumptions about different cultures which it uses as intelligence when analyzing the sentiment of a conversation, alerting the recipient to potential misunderstandings. It also runs an empathy engine which helps it learn how to react sympathetically to a situation to save the communicator’s feelings. It is programmed based on common interpretations of what people in one country say and what they really mean. For example, in the UK when people say, ‘That’s interesting’, it is often meant as a dismissal. So the comment, ‘That is an interesting proposal’ could well mean, ‘I think you are crazy.’ Wanda EasySpeak knows the intent of the person communicating and ensures the recipient knows that too.

This EasySpeak has been thoroughly tested within Unit4. EasySpeak is a bot-driven service that sits within existing messaging apps like Skype and Facebook Messenger. It sends notifications and suggestions in real-time during (online) meetings and other interactions like email.

Operating modes and additional functionality includes:

EasySpeak Reader – for re-interpreting the meaning of emails. 

EasySpeak Listener – provides text alerts to the listener in real time during a conversation. 

EasySpeak Moderator - provides voice intervention in real time to a conference call group to avoid misunderstandings (and apologizes for barking dogs and other background noise).

Discrete Mode - on screen notifications and alerts based on what is said and heard.

Intervention Mode – as above but with an audible alert encouraging the speaker to restate his previous sentence, this time more clearly, or less rudely. 

Today, we are extending the benefits of Wanda EasySpeak to other organizations. Do sign up today. Companies interested can subscribe for the Unit4 EasySpeak beta starting 1 April. 

Stephan Sieber

Stephan Sieber

Stephan was appointed CEO of Unit4 in 2016, responsible for leading the development and execution of the company's long term strategy. He joined Unit4 in 2014 as EVP Strategy and Operations and became responsible for global sales operations in 2015. Stephan previously worked for SAP where he held multiple leadership positions over more than 10 years including Managing Director of SAP Switzerland and Chief Operating Officer of the region DACH (Germany, Switzerland and Austria). He was also a member of the management team of SAP Germany. He completed an Advanced Management Program at INSEAD in 2002 and an MBA with the University of Toronto in 2007.

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