Shoppers at the brand-new Noel Leeming store at Westfield Newmarket are in for a digital surprise. New Zealand’s largest appliance and technology retailer has today unveiled Nola, its new digital human team member based at the flagship store to help shoppers navigate the store and answer questions they have.
Tim Edwards, Noel Leeming CEO, says “Nola is one of the first human-like interface backed by artificial intelligence to be used in the New Zealand retail space. She’s highly conversational and has a database of queries and answers that will be updated as her training progresses.”
“We’re excited to deliver this technology to our customers, and to see how Nola can help enhance their in-store experience. Noel Leeming is known as leaders in innovation and technology and to be pushing the boundaries of how technology can create amazing customer experiences using Nola is a fantastic step for us,” he says.
“We see her being a new way customers can interact in store and have committed to growing her across platforms as we learn what our customers like about her and what they want her to help with.
“Our team members are excited about how Nola will enable them to deliver great outcomes for customers by supporting wayfinding tasks so that they can focus on providing hands-on interactions,” says Mr Edwards.
Noel Leeming is investing in Nola's learning and development with future aspirations of her playing a wider role across different platforms. Much like the human mind, Nola’s knowledge and expertise will develop with information through customer interactions over time. She was designed to represent the best of parts of the Noel Leeming team and their customer service ethos.
Nola was created in partnership with UneeQ and Jade, leading providers of AI-powered technologies to enhance and personalise customer experiences.
UneeQ’s platform enables chatbots to become an engaging, visual customer experience that embodies a brand and brings the human touch back to a digital world.
UneeQ CEO, Danny Tomsett, says: “Great AI should be designed to enhance what humans do. Noel Leeming understands this, and they’re leveraging technology as a tool to support and empower their in-store staff to achieve more for their customers.”
Jade Software developed Nola’s question-and-answer capabilities and voice-to-text recognition software.
Jade’s CEO, Charlotte Walshe, says, “Nola is about better customer experience and engagement. She has been designed to converse in a natural manner and with the ability to call on her Noel Leeming team members for support should the customer desire it.”
Nola has been through her team member inductions for the past couple of months and officially started work this week (her first day being Thursday 26 September).
Nola’s first day coincides with the opening of Noel Leeming’s newest store at Westfield Newmarket. This store is unlike any other shopping experience, it’s a leader for innovation and forward-thinking retail design, offering consumers exclusive products and never-before-seen appliance experience zones.