How to upload a file to a chatbot

How to upload a file to a chatbot

SnatchBot Team SnatchBot Team, 13/01/2022

How to upload a file to a chatbot

An extremely valuable feature for chatbots is an ability to receive files and documents. Below we outline the top seven use cases for chatbots that can upload text files, pdfs, images, audio and video files. People are used to chatbots providing information via conversations 24/7 but it is less common to encounter chatbots that allow the user to upload their documents into the conversation. Yet such chatbots are automating processes in seconds that otherwise would take hours.

Seven use cases for chatbots that can upload documents

1. Chatbots in Education

Universities, colleges and schools are automating more and more of their administrative processes. This was happening before COVID but was massively accelerated from 2020 as remote learning became the main way in which students accessed their curricula. As part of this technical change, educational organisations have adopted software that allows the student to upload their work.

This is an essential functionality of any software to assist educational admin, but it falls far short of what is possible in teaching and learning today. With the arrival of AI-driven chatbots, it becomes possible to automate not only the administration of courses but also aspects of the learning experience. Want to see how? Try talking to our education chatbot.

The great value of chatbot learning compared to passive learning via video or even lectures is that the experience is constantly interactive and engaging. With a chatbot that can upload documents, management of the administration becomes more sophisticated too. The chatbot can ask questions to check the right materials are being submitted and it’s the perfect tool for assessments that require a combination of conversation responses and the submission of prepared work.

2. Chatbots in Local Government

SnatchBot was recently approached by a government body with the responsibility for addressing resident concerns around litter and hazards. Their pain point was that it takes a long time for a human to manage a phone call and especially that when it came to asking the resident for a photo of the problem, the resident had to be referred to the local government website.

A chatbot that can upload user photographs is a perfect solution for this use case, because it helps both the staff and the residents. Now the residents have a 24/7 immediate service that just takes seconds to lodge the report and upload their pictures. For the staff, not only can they now provide a round-the-clock service, but the details of the incident are automatically placed in the backend project management software, saving hours of time laboriously transferring telephone conversation details into forms.

3. Uploading documents to Project Management chatbots

Another recent request to SnatchBot was to make a chatbot for a large company that has over 200 projects running on any day, involving a thousand staff. These projects are managed backend with a knowledge base and software that moves through the various steps of the project.

The difficulty for the company was that the interactions between staff and the backend software were not smart enough to deal with the variety of requests coming from the staff. So IT were having to constantly deal with the same kinds of queries and updating the knowledge base was infrequent, because it was time consuming. The implementation of internal facing chatbots in WhatsApp have saved the company huge amounts of IT time. These chatbots talk the staff through their issues and it is a crucial part of the challenge that the staff can upload relevant documents to advance the project. The knowledge base too, can easily be added to by files uploaded through chatbots.

4. Resumé collecting chatbots for Human Resources

One of the early adopters of chatbot technology was the HR sector. It was immediately obvious to recruiters that automation of their forms would save hours and hours of time. The jobseeker talks to the chatbot and the chatbot stores their details in relevant databases as well as informs the jobseeker of relevant information. But the early chatbots lacked the ability to upload text files and thus there was still a time-consuming pain point in the process.

With chatbots that can import documents this has been solved and CVs are uploaded and stored via conversation with the chatbot, meaning HR staff can concentrate on more complex tasks.

5. Publisher and Agent Submissions

SnatchBot were asked to add a chatbot to a publisher’s website to help cope with the steady stream of submissions by authors. Crucial to this task was the ability of the user to upload a sample of their writing as a pdf or text file to the chatbot. This was then stored with the user’s detail and the relevant submissions editor alerted. Similarly, the larger literary agencies are automating their submissions process in this fashion and the fact that chatbots can receive user documents makes this possible.

6. Uploading Receipts to Customer Service Chatbots

Essential to the automation of customer queries is the ability of the organisation to receive copies of receipts issued to customers. Even just three years ago, this was an obstacle to creating fast, effective automations. Instead, time-consuming conversations with customer reps were required, or, worse, poorly implemented customer service conversation flows left the customer dissatisfied.

With customers now able to upload images of their receipts into chatbot conversations there is a rapid adoption of chatbot technology throughout the customer service sector. For the customer it means 24/7 access to the company and via the channel of their choice e.g. Messenger, WhatsApp, Viber, etc. For the company, customer service chatbots allow their staff to focus on the difficult cases, with the routine ones managed almost entirely automatically.

7. Medical Chatbots and Image Uploads

Medical technology is advancing rapidly and even small businesses in the health sector are able to automate processes that previously would have taken up a lot of receptionist time. Nowadays chatbots handle a lot of the calls to doctors and dentists and in taking down the details of the person seeking their service, it is valuable if the chatbot can receive photographs. Sometimes a picture tells the whole story.

SnatchBot’s clients include an orthodontist to provide an emergency service. Again, the around-the-clock service of a chatbot is very attractive to a company that previously only answered calls during receptionist hours. Now, the user can talk to the chatbot at any time (via Email, WhatsApp or Messenger) and if, for example, a brace has broken, upload an image of the problem. The orthodontist gets an email alert and can study the image to see how urgent the issue is and issue an appointment accordingly.

Upload your file to a chatbot

How do I upload a document using a chatbot?

There’s a reason why SnatchBot has been voted the number one user experience for ease of use when building chabots by G2, and that’s we really have taken the pain out of chatbot building. When it comes to uploading files through chatbot conversations, our feature could not be easier to use. The user can simply drag the file into the chat-bar or having copied it, press and hold the chat-bar to see the paste option.

If you have a use case that needs a chatbot that can accept uploads, then you’ve found the right platform. It couldn’t be easier to build your own chatbot with SnatchBot. Go ahead and register for free! Or, if you’d like to talk with us about your chatbot needs and whether our expert chatbot builders can help your project, please email