May 14, 2019
How to Use AI for Boosting Employee Engagement
Artificial intelligence appears in various areas of our lives and becomes a common tool for businesses of any size. The disruptive potential of this technology has made numerous headlines, so there’s no surprise that this technology continues to evolve at a rapid pace. Of course, some companies still haven’t embraced AI, and the main reason is that not everyone realises how universal this technology is. AI can be used for a variety of technical tasks, including speech recognition, predictive analysis, etc. However, it can also turn out to be quite useful for management.
AI offers countless benefits for HR. It eliminates exhausting, repetitive tasks, speeding up the search for talent, boosting employee engagement, and reducing attrition. AI can significantly improve the employee experience. However, many HR experts still question the effectiveness of this technology when dealing with traditionally human tasks, such as decision making. Even though many people have doubts about whether artificial intelligence can deal with tasks that require empathy or intuition, this technology already transforms the workplace, introducing new standards of efficiency.
85% of employees are either not engaged or actively disengaged at work (Gallup)
Employee engagement depends on the environment. A proper environment promotes recognition, skill development, and clarity. Thus, modern companies are searching for new ways to monitor employee engagement and tools that can help manage and improve it. During the last few years, the importance of deep employee engagement has become apparent because of the numerous studies. Employee engagement directly impacts business profits. However, many organisations have struggled to find the most effective methods and tools for years.
Before artificial intelligence became a trend, companies have tried countless methodologies aimed to boost employee engagement, but a few of them have shown decent results. Almost everyone has already criticised dubious concepts, board-room committees, and surveys of any kind because they rarely allow for creating effective solutions. Now, AI enables organisations to tackle the engagement issue easier and more efficiently than ever.
“We help managers understand which employees may benefit from a genuine thank you”
Manoj Agarwal, Co-founder, Xoxoday
AI-powered solutions allow businesses to monitor the overall performance in real time, providing timely support and assistance. They also simplify conflict resolution and provide numerous opportunities to improve development and learning activities. Also, these solutions allow companies to engage not only office workers but also remote employees, as well.
Technology has always impacted and shaped the corporate landscape, and AI is a great example of such a technology. Such AI tools as Humu, Perception, and ADP Compass enable managers to evaluate their employees’ morale and even offer advice on how to improve it. ADP reports a 40% increase in management effectiveness thanks to this technology. Xoxoday is another HR tech company that focuses on employee recognition. Their software allows managers to manage employee engagement and happiness in real time. This way, the company managed to boost Cleartrip’s employee engagement by 10%.
How to Use AI for Boosting Employee Engagement
Companies no longer need to rely on annual or quarterly assessments to evaluate employee performance. Traditional approaches allowed managers to evaluate final results only, not giving any insights into the working process. Proper assessment is impossible without considering intermediary steps that can illustrate employees’ professional dynamics. AI-based solutions not only allow organisations to monitor engagement in real time but also can identify certain patterns in every employee’s performance, giving warning signs when an employee becomes less productive
2. Decision making
Business often requires decision makers to act as quickly as possible, which not only leads to stressful situations but also negatively affects the results of such decisions. It’s hard to take into account all the important factors while dealing with the pressure from the administration. One of the main advantages of AI is that it is capable of learning from its own experience. AI-powered systems can select valuable information and offer solutions that meet the requirements. For example, InData Labs develops solutions that evaluate employees’ stress levels and interest in the task based on their typing speed. The tool also suggests possible actions for each particular problem.
Instead of relying on a traditional three-day orientation and hoping that employees will learn everything they need to know from a handbook, organisations can choose a much better approach. AI-based chatbots can provide new employees with the necessary information exactly when they need it. There are also AI-powered personality testing tools that determine an employee’s main interests and learning abilities, providing a personalised onboarding experience. This way, some employees can receive a lot of information at once, while others are guided through every step of the onboarding process.
4. Vacancy promotion
Machine learning not only helps employers create a personalised experience for each employee but also offers countless opportunities for effective vacancy promotion. Artificial intelligence is capable of searching for candidates on social media. It can also determine which marketing channels are most effective for a certain category of users. Data analysis allows AI to create personalised newsletters, choosing the content that will resonate with a certain user.
The issue of equality and fairness at the workplace is a common problem for modern companies, and AI offers an effective solution. AI-powered tools are capable of providing a truly unbiased experience, helping companies create a diverse workplace. Machines only make decisions based on real data, with no personal judgment.
6. Team collaboration
AI can also help managers create productive teams, eliminating decision fatigue. Such tools gather data on performance and analyse sentiment, suggesting what employees will collaborate most productively to achieve certain outcomes. Such tools as Yva.ai and TrustSphere can analyse the work style of the most productive employees and generate actionable insights so that other employees can also use methods that have proven to be effective.
Team collaboration is also often associated with meetings. Unnecessary meetings lead to a drop in productivity and engagement. Managers need to waste a lot of time matching timings and planning meetings, while AI can do it automatically, analysing the availability calendar and suggesting what employees to invite based on the level of their expertise. Therefore, managers have much more time for meaningful work.
7. Employee training
The effectiveness of AI for education is hard to overestimate, as companies get an opportunity to tailor training programs to each particular employee, eliminating stress and allowing everyone to learn at their own pace. Managers no longer need to waste their time checking mistakes, being able to focus on more important tasks. AI also perfectly complements virtual reality and augmented reality solutions, allowing companies to create realistic training sessions that imitate real working conditions.
8. Managing rewards
We’ve already mentioned AI-powered tools that monitor employee performance, providing managers with actionable insights in real time. Recognition programs are often too complex, being both ineffective for employees and tedious for managers. AI allows companies to make such processes much more efficient, distributing resources more appropriately. Teams can be sure that their efforts won’t remain unnoticed and every contribution will be rewarded fairly. However, it doesn’t mean that employees don’t need to receive recognition from humans anymore.
9. Capturing daily experiences
AI-powered solutions can use sentiment analysis to determine what employees are thinking about the company and how they’re feeling. AI tools can identify common patterns in conversations between coworkers, analysing phrases and emojis, and quickly detecting challenges that employees face in their everyday lives at work.
AI can also provide quick surveys. Simple and frequent surveys can help managers monitor their employees’ mood regularly, quickly reacting to any problems, and getting predictive insights into the employees’ behavioural patterns. For example, such solutions can help managers understand if an employee is thinking about quitting the job.
Although AI is still an experimental technology for HR, it already demonstrates its effectiveness when dealing with repetitive tasks that otherwise would require lots of manual labour. AI also offers numerous unique benefits, such as real-time performance monitoring and sentiment analysis. As big corporations like Honda start to use AI-based solutions for employee engagement, the popularity of artificial intelligence grows, and more HR specialists become interested in adopting this technology.
Understanding how their employees feel and what they think, managers and leaders can improve decision-making significantly, taking into account actionable insights into their employees’ behaviour and mood. Managers don’t need to spend a lot of time analysing and interpreting data. Therefore, HR teams can focus on coaching and building strong relationships. Even though algorithms still cannot replace HR professionals, they already help to create a more human workplace.
While many experts from various industries are concerned about robots taking their jobs, companies that have adopted AI technologies realise that machines are just useful assistants that can help HR managers forget about their most tedious responsibilities. Thus, they can focus on their control role and evaluation. On the one hand, machines still lack empathy and other human features. On the other hand, they also lack subjectivity and bias, being able to create equal opportunities for everyone and to provide fair recognition and rewards.
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