If you’re in HR, you’ve undoubtedly heard two buzzwords as much or more than any others in the past few years: AI and employee experience.

They’re topics we often link to automation — after all, the employee experience is a lot better when you’re freed from tedious, repetitive processes. But AI is actually improving the employee experience in other ways that are often overlooked.

We spoke with two leading AI experts about a few ways AI is making the employee experience better than ever.

AI Is Expanding Voice-Controlled Interfaces

Let’s consider employee experience for a moment. A large part of the focus centers on creating a more “consumerized” approach to the relationship between employee and employer — essentially to treat the employee like a customer. Employees are also looking to bring their most authentic selves to work. The days of being a different person at home and at the office are over.

In order to bridge this gap between our professional and public selves, organizations have begun to think about the way employees use technology, mirroring the way we use it at home. Many of us are used to talking to Siri or Alexa, and organizations are in the process of embracing voice-powered AI to create a better employee experience. “This is becoming very mainstream,” says Emily He, senior vice president of marketing, human capital management, at Oracle. “People want to use a conversational style to engage with their application.”

In terms of automation, voice interfaces will provide the same convenience they do for us when we want to hear “Despacito” — except that now employees can use voice to assist with tasks that have a bit more import. For example, “Expense reports approval is a really cumbersome process,” He says. “Now, with the AI app, I can say, ‘Approve all expense reports below a certain amount.’ ”

AI Is Driving Internal Talent Mobility

Jeanne Meister is the founder of Future Workplace, an HR research and advisory firm that offers a popular course, AI 4 HR. She says that AI will be a massive boon for internal talent mobility. “Companies are doing everything they can to keep the people they have,” she says.

Meister says organizations have begun to have employees create what is essentially an internal LinkedIn profile. In these profiles, employees can share personal information, credentials and other relevant information that allows AI to match them with potential promotions. “Sometimes it’s jobs that the individual may not have thought about themselves,” she says. “This gives the employee working inside the company the opportunity to understand how their skills plus their aspirations can lead to a new internal position.”

And if an employee isn’t quite ready for a new position? The AI has the ability to recommend courses and training programs, bringing a more personalized form of talent development to the employee experience, Meister says.

AI Is Streamlining and Improving the Hiring Process

It’s important to remember that the employee experience always begins with the candidate experience.

Many organizations have begun to use chatbots as part of recruiting, and they’re beginning to see results. Both He and Meister point to Hilton’s success in this area. The hotel chain began using chatbots in 2015, and the program has shown marked results, Meister says. “They have increased their net promoter score for the candidate experience to 80%” — and also increased the diversity of the talent pool, she says.

Most impressive, though, is how chatbots have sped up Hilton’s recruiting process, she says. “Their recruiters are offering 85 more jobs per week than they were previously,” Meister says.

To learn more about AI and how it’s powering modern HR organizations, check out our AI for HR guide.

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