Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, just 24% of businesses felt employee engagement was a top priority. As the pandemic declines, this number has risen to nearly 36%. Still, the number is lower than many would expect. Effectively engaging employees and communicating with them leads to higher satisfaction, higher retention rates, and productivity. With all of the different ways and locations, people work today, having a central point for communication and engagement is critical.
There are many mutual benefits of implementing AI to better employee engagement, such as helping businesses stay together, stay organized, and create more connections for team members. Chatbots can help employees remain updated about any new developments or news within the company, obtain feedback, and handle various aspects of an employee’s daily work cycle. Integrating conversational AI into existing company-wide systems is an easy and effective solution for amplifying employee engagement, improving communication, and providing a convenient social hub to build connections.
Implementing conversational AI can help your organization reach strategic goals beyond simply improving team member engagement. As you consider how to integrate this new technology into your organization, take the opportunity to rethink traditional processes and workflows. Simply using chatbots to perform repetitive tasks will save time, but they have so much more potential. Businesses that think outside the box and seek to maximize their investment in conversational AI usually see the most benefits.
The Positive Impact of Conversational AI
Conversational AI solutions offer convenience and can alleviate a lot of stressors of employees. They build connections, limit friction among staff, and create a more understanding environment. These bots can offer so many new possibilities within the workplace that can benefit both employees and their employers. Some of the benefits are listed below.
#1. Employee Feedback
Chatbots can ask for and receive unprompted reviews from team members in a conversational way. Bots can ask questions ranging from simple to complex, and since there isn’t a human on the other side, they will likely receive more honest answers. This can be vital in identifying any problematic issues within the company and discovering familiar sources of unhappiness. Bots are programmed to offer real-time solutions to alleviate any stress and engage with team members efficiently and quickly. Furthermore, employees can offer suggestions, reviews, request advice or assistance, give recommendations, tips, tricks, and concentrate on improving their performance.
#2. Improved Transparency
Conversational AI (often chatbots) simulates human interaction. When companies choose to use chatbots, they are directly improving transparency within the workplace. The first place to start when using a chatbot is to make employees know that they are engaging with a chatbot. You never want them to feel like they are being tricked or like they aren’t a priority. Make it known that implementing chatbots is one way the organization is trying to lighten the workload and minimize mundane tasks HR departments do daily.
Chatbots can be preconfigured to fit a specific business and offer open communication between employees and HR departments. Chatbots are able to reach out to employees and request feedback and offer real-time solutions for a variety of problems or concerns.
Employees should be able to rely on company leaders and expect honesty from them, too. An excellent way to start creating this transparency is by implementing chatbots for HR functions. Chatbots help to improve transparency by sending accurate alerts and information company-wide whenever necessary. Moreover, these chatbots provide employees with an objective outlet to share their concerns, at any time. It helps employees feel like they're a priority or that their issues get ignored
#3. Higher Degree of Independence
With the help of chatbots, team members can easily access different services through one central hub 24 hours a day. This opens up greater opportunities for self-service, even outside regular business hours. Just as consumers often prefer self-service options in banking and or retail, employees also tend to prefer it when they need answers to questions about benefits or other HR policies. In addition to helping employees feel more independent, chatbots also reduce the time that your HR team spends on answering repetitive questions about benefits, policies, and other common topics.
#4. Better and Faster Employee Enablement
Today’s society is fast-moving; we have access to the world at our fingertips. Quickly finding the correct information is imperative to good operation and performance. Chatbots allow employees to access the information they need quickly, when and where they need it. Faster enablement of team members in the office, working remotely, or on the go boasts better experiences and productivity. This can be particularly beneficial for new employees; chatbots can play a key role in onboarding, along with providing a handy resource for company FAQ's and even position-specific procedures.
#5. Lower Costs
Chatbots are exceptional assistants handling mundane office tasks that simulate HR requests and complex interactions like specific hiring processes or benefits management. This frees up team members to focus on other tasks. The costs associated with personal services desks, HR, and even IT can be reduced significantly--freeing up resources to invest in other employee engagement initiatives like learning opportunities.
#6. Centralized and Consistent Communications
A well-designed conversational AI solution uses a central access point to all other employee channels; no matter the case, geographic region, language, or department, all resource information can be discovered starting in one centralized hub. This generates a greater sense of consistency for the employer and employees, less stress for employees, and provides a sense of control and security for all parties.
#7. Higher Satisfaction Rates
Reducing stress and inconvenience, centralized communication, and easier access to relevant information all work hand in hand to improve the overall employee experience. Chatbots are used in so many ways, but the way that receives the most positive feedback is how to simulate they reach out to employees and gather information, their feedback, alert them to upcoming enrollment or other events, and gauge satisfaction levels and suggestions for their improvement.
#8. Support Employee Well-Being
One emerging application for chatbots is in supporting employees' mental health. Thanks to natural language processing, these bots can contextualize the input they receive and respond with empathy. They can also direct employees to additional resources as appropriate. In many cases, employees actually prefer to interact with chatbots when discussing mental health, since there's no risk of judgment from a chatbot. Furthermore, as chatbots can be available when humans are not, they can offer support even during non-working hours.
Chatbots are here to stay and only becoming more and more popular among organizations. They are no longer just used for simple customer questions, but for a variety of employee needs. Having happy employees is vital to the success of a business. Happy, healthy, and productive employees are more productive and engaged. Chatbots and other AI tools can help gather vital information and take action immediately, supporting better employee engagement and ensuring that your workforce feels valued and heard.