Breaking news April 1: Salesforce launch AI app to solve one of business’s biggest challenges

Today, Salesforce – the cloud-based software company – have launched a new app, powered by artificial intelligence (AI), with the aim of helping businesses tackle one of the toughest organisational challenges of recent times.

Called LL Proof AI, the app’s purpose is to help teams within companies of all sizes work out whose turn it is to make the tea. The technology is based on years of painstaking research which has led the tech giant to the conclusion that groups of people working together, who would normally be harmonious and highly productive, are in fact wasting untold hours by arguing over who should be heading to the kitchen to brew up – or, worse, simply glowering from behind their monitors while launching hints directed at their co-workers. This, claims Salesforce, is costing organisations billions of pounds in lost productivity.

Version 1.04 of the software, which can be seamlessly integrated with the rest of the Salesforce suite of applications, uses a smart AI-powered algorithm to tell each team member in turn, at precisely 10.30am and 4pm every day, to get the mugs out and treat their colleagues to a cuppa.

It even sends a warning to those who aren’t pulling their weight, telling them it’s time to change their ways and break out the Typhoo – or risk causing a dip in team morale and the kind of serious business failure that can accompany it.

There’s also an optional add-on that calculates who should be prepared to dip their hands in their pockets now and again to fork out for a packet of biscuits.

One company that’s been trialling a beta version of the app over the past few months is hot air producer AF Day. Olaf Pirlo, their Hypothetical Paradigm Architect, is a fan. “Cheryl in accounts never used to make the bloody tea,” he says. “And it always seemed to be my sodding turn. But since we implemented the app, it’s been virtually non-stop lapsang souchong all day every day. Honestly, the difference it’s made is enormous – we can just get on with our work now, instead of constantly having to resort to lame jokes about what letter comes after ‘S’.”

Our verdict

So, what’s the Cognition24 verdict on this – and should you be considering it for your business? Our Head of Theoretical Drollery, Jo Kisson-Yew, reckons the app has potential, but still has reservations.

“It’s really important to look beyond the hype whenever a tech company claims it can solve everything with a single software solution,” she says. “In reality, that’s rarely the case. The most important thing is, first and foremost, to understand your business challenges and their root causes – and then consider whether you might need to make adjustments to how your employees operate in order to tackle those problems.

“Then, be wary of thinking tech can fix everything if you haven’t got your business processes right in the first place. For example, in the case of tea-making, a friendly chat with the laggards and a simple rota pinned to the wall might actually do the trick – especially if it was under a calendar to remind everyone of the date.”