Tzlil Yosevitz on Founding Robonote, Breaking Stereotypes, and Empowering Future Female Entrepreneurs

Robonote
8 min readApr 1, 2024

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“Not Everyone Views Women in Tech Through the Same Lens”

By: The Fast Forward Team

Mrs. Tzlil Yosevitz CPO & Co-Founder of Robonote

In celebration of International Women’s Day, FastForward had the pleasure of interviewing Tzlil Yosevitz, the co-founder of Robonote. The interview was conducted in light of the special day, with a focus on delving into the realm of female entrepreneurship. Tzlil, an empowering figure in the tech industry, shares her insights on overcoming stereotypes and the unique challenges that women face on their entrepreneurial journey. Furthermore, the conversation illuminates the multifaceted and beneficial features of Robonote, showcasing how this conversation intelligence platform is unlocking powerful insights from customer-facing conversations.

Tzlil opens up about her path, recounting her journey from academia and her professional tenure at Intel and highlighting the predominance of male colleagues in her field. Tzlil emphasizes her stance on gender neutrality in professional evaluation, stressing the importance of skills and contributions over gender identity. Despite this, she acknowledges occasional biases encountered, such as disbelief in her leadership role due to her gender. Moreover, the interview delves into the inception and focus of Robonote on AI, its innovative approach to customer service, and Tzlil’s perspective on maintaining a cutting-edge status amidst ongoing advancements in AI. Finally, Tzlil offers some insightful guidance for aspiring entrepreneurs.

As we commemorate Women’s Day, your path serves as an inspiring example for female entrepreneurs in the making. Could you share what inspired you to co-found Robonote and how being a woman in the tech industry has influenced this endeavor?

It is no secret that in tech, particularly in leadership roles, women are a rare sight. My journey through academia and my professional life consistently placed me as the sole female presence, from being one of the few women in my electrical engineering classes (10 out of 120) to often being the only woman on teams at Intel.

These male-dominated settings became my norm. To me, the distinction between men and women is non-existent. Individuals should be evaluated based on what they bring to the table, not their gender.

“Occasionally, I encounter individuals who request to speak with the CEO, implying their disbelief of a female leader”

However, founding Robonote revealed a different perspective to me; not everyone views women in tech through the same lens. Occasionally, I encounter individuals who request to speak with the CEO, implying their disbelief of a female leader. There was an instance with a company that preferred communicating solely with my male partner. Needless to say, we ceased all communications with them. It appears some attitudes remain antiquated.

I take pride in being a female leader and aspire to pave the way for more women to join me.

What propelled you from a career in Electronic Engineering and roles at Intel & Systematics to entrepreneurship, and how instrumental has your technical background been during this transition?

Something unexpected and non-scientific happened to me — I fell in love. I decided to go all in and follow my partner to Malta. After we moved, I started looking for a job as an electrical engineer, but it was nearly impossible.

My partner managed a multilingual call center, a stark contrast to my previous experiences. With no engineering opportunities available, I ventured into operations management with him. This role introduced me to the dynamics of team leadership, performance tracking, and the strategic use of data to enhance business operations.

I was taken aback by the low-tech tools at our disposal. Investigating a complaint involved a tedious process of manual record tracing and call listening, which could extend over months, particularly for cases in non-English languages.

Transitioning from the cutting-edge environment of tech giants like Intel and MathWorks to a more rudimentary setting seemed like a step back. Yet, this experience laid bare the very issue I later became passionate about solving. It also offered invaluable lessons in leadership and the art of empowering employees.

This detour from the conventional tech pathway allowed me to grasp the problem from both a user’s and a solver’s perspective. The inception of a solution became a persistent thought. Each investigative case we undertook underscored the necessity for an improved system. We relocated to Cyprus, and during the pandemic, my partner and I decided to build this solution first for ourselves. The positive impact on our revenue was eye-opening.

This realization underscored the enormity of the issue and the expansive potential of our target market. A myriad of businesses worldwide grapple with inefficient contact center operations. Robonote introduces a solution that holds the promise of universal applicability.

What inspired the focus on AI for Robonote, and how does it utilize AI to extract meaningful insights from customer interactions?

My academic pursuits included courses in machine learning and algorithms. Later, in my sales role, I aided startups in integrating machine learning and AI into their operations. These experiences cemented my belief in AI’s potential to address the challenges we faced in the call center.

Robonote was founded on the conviction that AI could resolve these issues. We developed custom algorithms to tackle the problem, acknowledging that a generic solution would fall short. The requirements of a shoe retailer, for example, vastly differ from those of a bank.

“Robonote comprehends context. For instance, when identifying the event ‘occupation’ in a dialogue, the need to catalog every possible occupation is obviated by our AI model’s contextual understanding”

Our initial clients often harbored the misconception that Robonote was limited to keyword detection. We clarify that Robonote comprehends context. For instance, when identifying the event “occupation” in a dialogue, the need to catalog every possible occupation is obviated by our AI model’s contextual understanding. For example, the agent asks the client what he is doing for a living. If it used keywords, one would need to write down all the occupations that exist; with our AI model there is no need, the machine understands the context and highlights the occupation.

This process underscored the importance of establishing a robust “intelligence” base before delving into the “artificial” facets of AI. The challenge transcends mere algorithmic complexity. We noted that the sheer volume of data AI can extract often overwhelms users.

Robonote serves as a bridge between intricate AI technology and user-friendly interfaces. We transform complex algorithms into an intuitive platform, ensuring ease of use even for those transitioning from basic systems.

It’s funny that even today, and after the AI boom, the biggest competitor of robonote is listening manually to calls.

We acknowledge the importance of scalability for startups. However, an exclusive focus on expansion can dilute the customer experience, compelling clients to adapt to the product. In contrast, Robonote prioritizes meeting client needs, delivering a bespoke experience that seamlessly scales.

How does Robonote maintain its edge with the ongoing advancements in AI and machine learning, and why is this critical in today’s landscape?

Robonote’s development predates the recent surge in AI popularity. Our emphasis has always been on the effective application of AI to enhance client outcomes. Regrettably, the term “AI” is often bandied about as a mere buzzword today.

Our core strength lies in tackling the challenge of organizing, understanding, and filtering large amounts of customer conversation data. This helps us identify the real benefits and challenges businesses face.

We continually strive for improvements in three key areas: processing speed, cost efficiency, and accuracy. Enhancements in these domains elevate Robonote’s capabilities, enabling quicker data analysis and insight delivery to clients. Reduced costs make our solution more accessible to a broader spectrum of businesses. Above all, enhanced accuracy ensures the reliability of the information we provide to clients, aiding them in better understanding and serving their customers. Keeping abreast of AI advancements allows us to perpetually augment the value we deliver.

As a successful woman in the realms of technology and entrepreneurship, what obstacles have you encountered, and what counsel would you offer to young women aspiring to your achievements?

Launching a business is inherently challenging, though it’s often perceived as glamorous. The reality is a grueling journey with no assured outcomes. The experience resembles a rollercoaster, with exhilarating highs and daunting lows.

The commitment required surpasses even the demands of parenting (and as a mother of two, I can attest to this). I returned to work merely two days postpartum. The relentless pressure to excel leaves little room for work-life balance.

But the key to surviving this crazy ride is truly believing in your idea. You have to be passionate about the problem you’re solving and the solution you’re offering. Also having great partners by your side makes all the difference — both in business and at home, in my case, it’s the same amazing person!

“The satisfaction of making a difference makes it all worthwhile”

Even with the challenges, I love going to work and doing it with a smile on my face — every day — because I get to do something I’m passionate about and love. I guess that helping businesses understand their customers better through Robonote is incredibly rewarding. It’s not easy, but the satisfaction of making a difference makes it all worthwhile.

So, my advice to young entrepreneurs thinking about starting a company is this: find a good partner, believe in what you’re doing, find a problem, you are willing to sacrifice everything for it and be willing to put in the hard work. It won’t be easy, but if you’re passionate about your idea, you’ll find the journey itself incredibly rewarding!

What methodologies does Robonote employ to cultivate a culture of innovation and collaboration, both internally and with external partners?

At Robonote, we consider effective communication and teamwork as the cornerstone of our operations.

We value the richness of diverse perspectives. Our team comprises individuals from varied backgrounds and locales, each contributing unique insights. We nurture an environment conducive to open dialogue, where these diverse viewpoints catalyze innovation and enhance productivity.

For instance, we engage in authentic brainstorming sessions that actively involve all participants. Decision-making is a collective process; every team member has the opportunity to contribute, with the most compelling idea prevailing. I champion open dialogue and fresh perspectives. I encourage my team to challenge assumptions, propose improvements, and acknowledge the merit in every suggestion. However, I advocate for presenting potential solutions alongside identified problems.

What are your aspirations for Robonote’s future, and how do you envision the role of AI in customer service evolving?

We see a future where automation plays a key role in customer service and support. We anticipate a rise in chatbots and virtual assistants (robocalls) to handle routine inquiries and basic troubleshooting. Robonote mission is to organize interaction with client, it doesn’t matter if the client is taking to machine ot to humans.

“While AI can significantly improve efficiency, we don’t foresee it replacing human customer service representatives entirely, especially for complex issues”

However, while AI can significantly improve efficiency, we don’t foresee it replacing human customer service representatives entirely, especially for complex issues.

AI excels at handling repetitive tasks, freeing up human agents to focus on building relationships, providing personalized support, and tackling intricate problems.

In my personal experience with various AI tools, they’re excellent time-savers. However, it’s important to remember that AI often requires human oversight and intervention to ensure accuracy and optimal performance.

There’s a crucial distinction between AI for entertainment and AI for business applications.

Mrs. Tzlil Yozevitch CPO & Co-Founder of Robonote

Tzlil Yozevitch is a tech entrepreneur passionate about revolutionizing the low-tech call center industry. She leveraged her background in Electronic Engineering (Intel & Matlab) and her experience managing a successful multilingual call center to create her conversation intelligence platform, Robonote. By bridging the gap between technology and business, Tzlil leverages her expertise to drive growth.

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