Sgt. Star - the Army's virtual recruiter

Animated GI uses natural language techniques and increases the time visitors spend on the GoArmy site.
Written by Richard Koman, Contributor

"Sgt. Star" is the perfect salesman. He's strong, trustworthy and has all the answers, and you can meet Sgt. Star at the GoArmy website. Sgt. Star is the latest addition to the recruitment site and has been developed to appeal to the tech-savvy, reports Government Computer News.

"We've tested Sgt. Star for several months on GoArmy.com, and in comparison to the site without him, we've seen longer session times, excellent accuracy and increased questioning among users," said Gary Bishop, deputy for the Strategic Outreach Directorate in the Army Accessions Command.

So far, since Sgt. Star arrival in August, users' sessions have lengthened from an average of four minutes to 16 minutes. He's a workhorse too. He's answered more than 500,000 questions, with a 92 percent accuracy rate.

Sgt. Star isn't merely an animated talking head. He uses natural-language conversation and follow-up questions to provide personalized answers for each visitor. He was developed by Next IT Corp. of Spokane, WA. Its ActiveAgent software recognizes situation context, concepts and other information keys, allowing it to provide accurate information and identify the user's intent.

Looks like the Sarge is here to stay.

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