US Navy Introduces Amelia: A Conversational AI Tech Support Tool

The US Navy is expected to roll out a new, conversational AI program, “Amelia”, that can easily troubleshoot and resolve the most frequently asked and viewed tech-support queries from marines, civilian personnel, and sailors.

The complete rollout, expected to be executed in August this year, is the most recent and unique step in the whopping $136 million venture of the Navy Enterprise Service Desk, aimed at modernizing and consolidating over 90 IT help desks into a single, central node.

General Dynamics Information Technology (popular as GDIT) declared that it was awarded the NESD indefinite delivery and indefinite quantity contract toward the end of 2021.

Meet Amelia, the US Navy’s new conversational artificial intelligence tech-support tool.

Marines, sailors, and civilians with a common access card and those authenticated via the Global Federated User Directory can contact Amelia via text or phone.

The program is expected to serve over one million users with non-stop responses based on a depth of training and insider know-how.

Additional applications, like in a classified environment, could also follow.

Predominantly, the firm has had agents who knew how to fix specific issues, Travis Dawson, GDIT’s CTO exclusively for the Navy and Marine Corps sector, informed C4ISRNET. He explains that those issues can be documented. And once those have been reported, the same can be resolved via automation without human interaction.

While Amelia has been taught to answer queries and take care of repetitive tasks, Dawson explained that it could do much more, like sensing the frustration in user queries.

Suppose Amelia is not able to answer questions or fix any issue. In that case, it can share the problem with a live agent — the sort of human-to-human interaction conventionally associated with locked accounts or connectivity woes. In testing, Amelia has helped in significantly slashing the number of abandoned calls, and the first-contact resolution rate has been relatively high, in the higher 90 percentile, per Dawson.

He added that users can get their answers quicker than they have historically been able to.
The Pentagon has been spending several billion dollars on major AI advancements and subsequent adoption.

The technology is being applied to both the battlefield and the boardroom. It can also assist in target identification on combat vehicles, and it can also parse huge amounts of personnel as well as organizational information.

In May, GDIT, a division of General Dynamics, the world’s fifth largest defence contractor in terms of revenue, launched a tech-investment strategy focusing on 5G wireless communication, zero-trust cybersecurity, and automation to carry out IT operations, AI, and so on.

The firm provided C4ISRNET, a rendering of Amelia as a female sailor in her uniform. No explanations of the gender selection or name were shared.

The requirement moving forward was to integrate an AI capability, Dawson mentioned.
And with today’s automation, Amelia fits the bill.

References: Defense News, C4ISRNET.

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