A managerial framework for implementing chatbots in e-commerce businesses
Van Heerden, J.
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It is becoming increasingly important for South African e-commerce businesses to recognise how Chatbot technology can aid in providing a positive customer service experience. If successfully implemented, Chatbots offer businesses the opportunity to gain a competitive advantage in a fast-changing business and technology landscape. However, leveraging this technology typically presents itself as a challenge due to its inherent complexity and diverse resource demands during development. South Africa's ITC infrastructure enables e-commerce, but there are also unique challenges that need to be considered. To overcome all these challenges, management needs to look intensively at IT management models and how to effectively implement Chatbot technology. The aim of this study is thus to develop a managerial framework that provides guidance for e-commerce businesses in South Africa who wish to implement Chatbot service technology. The framework is primarily focused on the business-to-consumer e-commerce industry where a Chatbot service is to be implemented as a technology and business solution. Content analysis and thematic analysis methods were used as part of this strategy to analysis the collected data. The best managerial practices were identified in local and international e-commerce businesses where Chatbot technologies have been successfully implemented as part of their client operational processes. Technology management methodologies were also evaluated with a specific focus on IT service management, IT project management, and IT governance models.A managerial framework for the implementation of a Chatbot service within an e-commerce business was then finally developed based on a comprehensive literature study and the derived empirical findings.