About Intents

What is an 'Intent'?

An intent is a mapping between what a user says and what the software should do. For example, a banking service could support a number of intents, including:

  • What is my balance?
  • What were the last three transactions on my account?
  • How do I reset my password?
  • I have forgotten my PIN...

Each of these represents different user inputs that the end-user may express in order to trigger a particular intent. Humley Studio allows you to configure these intents and use them as starting points for building responses to the user.

What makes up an intent?

An intent is comprised of the following parts:

  • Intent type - An Intent's type sets how it behaves, how it is selected, and what the user response will be like
  • Trigger - The action that triggers the intent's response to be returned to the end-user
  • Main User Input - An user utterance i.e. what they say. This is also the input that is displayed to the end-user in some circumstances
  • Alternative User Inputs - Other ways an end-user may phrase the question (this is also used to build the AI training data)
  • Response - The response that is returned to the end-user, or the name of the Flow that the intent triggers
  • Add-ons - These allow Intents and their responses to be even more powerful with time-context filters, meta-data, and videos added to the Intent's response

Intent types

An Intent's type sets how it behaves, how it is selected, and what the user response will be like


Use a Standard Intent when you need return specific information to an end-user in a typical Question & Answer -type response

Standard Intent Humley Studio


Use a Flow Intent when you need an end-user's question or utterance to trigger a Flow

Flow Intent Humley Studio

Small Talk

You will already have a number of pre-built Small Talk Intents that can handle the chit-chat, the pleasantaries, and connecting pieces of a conversation. You may want to edit these to reflect your brand's 'tone of voice', or add more as appropriate.

If you want to handle a random question or statement that is outside the specific product or service your assistant is supporting, use a Small Talk Intent.
Otherwise, use a different Intent type.

Small Talk Intent Humley Studio

What is a Trigger?

A trigger is an event that causes an intent response to occur. There are three different types of triggers: User Input, Humley Intro and Microsoft Teams.

  • User Input- What the user says or types in any channel

  • Humley Intro- Allows you specify a response that should be provided when a session begins. When using our Conversation API, this response will be sent as part of the /openconversation endpoint.

  • Microsoft Teams- Allows you specify a response that should be provided when a Microsoft Teams channel has been opened by the end-user

Importing and Exporting intents

There are various ways to create intents on Humley Studio, these include:

  • Humley Studio - You can create intents directly on Humley Studio

  • Importing Intents - There are two ways to import intents:

    • Import via a CSV file - you can quickly import one or more intents to your knowledge base using a CSV file

    • Import via our API

You can also Export intents via our API.

Still need help? Get in touch!
Last updated on 20th Jul 2020