Digital Team shortlisted for national awards
5 October 2017 - Nick Boothroyd
Our Digital Team has been shortlisted as a finalist in the Digital Innovation in the Public Sector category at the 2017 Digital Entrepreneur Awards (DEAs).
The DEAs are the only national awards dedicated to championing digital entrepreneurialism and innovation across the UK and are this year split into North/South regions for the first time. Our university’s entry beat off competition from hundreds of businesses across 16 award categories.
Our entry focused on the development of a chatbot ahead of A level results day which helped prospective students find the right course for them through Clearing.
Using Facebook Messenger’s chatbot technology, the innovative Leeds Beckett bot allows prospective students to have an online conversation to assess their suitability for undergraduate courses that are available during university Clearing.
The chatbot, available both on desktop and mobile, uses a series of menus or keywords to guide students through the Clearing process and is available 24 hours a day.
Speaking about the bot, Dougal Scaife, Head of Digital Experience, said: “We know that our prospective students already use lots of messaging software for communicating with their friends such as Snapchat, WhatsApp and texting, so developing a chatbot was a natural evolution in order to engage with our prospective students in a medium that’s ubiquitous, familiar, and comfortable for them.”
The awards, now in their 13th year, cover categories encompassing every component of today’s online business ecosystem – from enigmatic leadership to forward-thinking development and cutting-edge creative. Categories include Social Media Campaign of the Year, Most Innovative use of Video or Animation and the coveted Digital Entrepreneur of the Year award.
Previous winners of the awards span a range of sectors, from retail giants like Sainsbury’s and Mothercare to smaller, more agile digital specialists like Social Chain and Clicky Media.
Lawrence Jones, CEO of headline sponsor UKFast, said: “It’s extraordinary to see the development of digital across every sector. From creative agencies to law firms and the
public sector, everyone needs to evolve their offering to stay ahead of the competition. That’s reflected in the sheer number and diversity of entries we’ve received this year.
“The DEAs are an incredible opportunity to celebrate the best in digital talent from up and down the UK. It’s an amazing honour to return as the lead sponsor this year as the awards evolve to encourage involvement from every region in the country.
“This year’s finalists have all shown a clear appreciation of challenges faced in business and how to solve them using digital innovation, meeting the everyday needs of their customers by evolving new solutions and approaches. That’s what the DEAs are all about.”
The awards will take place on 22 November 2017 at the Principal Hotel, Manchester.