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Employee Engagement, Employee Experience and Employee Self-Service

By Mandy Reed, Global Head of Marketing

Over the past several years companies have begun to place more importance on their employee experience and to make more strategic investments in employee engagement initiatives. There are lots of benefits to improving your employee experience, from increased staff retention to the knock-on effect on your customer experience. However, companies need to be careful not to mistake high engagement for a positive experience.

According to Caroline Walsh, Director and Team Manager at Gartner:

“Employee engagement remains a valuable baseline measure for any organization. But engagement is an outcome of experience; it doesn’t necessarily signal the expectations employees have for their work experience or help you identify their priorities.”

A Gartner survey found that of highly engaged employees, only 21% report having a high-quality experience. This highlights the fact that engagement must be viewed as part of your overall experience and not as the sole measurement of the success or failure of your employee initiatives. It also highlights the need to make strategic investments in experience improvements.

One way companies can easily improve the experience of employees is by offering personalised self-service options for routine support. Just as virtual agents and chatbots are ideal tools for customer self-service, they also lend themselves well to supporting employees in areas such as IT Service Management (ITSM), human resources (HR) and staff training. They give employees a way to easily access the information they need.

To really be effective though, the virtual agent needs to be integrated with the right backend systems to provide an extremely personalised experience. That could be Single Sign-On (SSO), ticketing systems, knowledge management platforms, employee profiles, voice systems, live chat systems, call back and/or third-party databases depending on your organisation and the use case for your virtual agent. Selecting a technology that allows for the right integrations and customisation is key.

Giving employees an easy way to self-serve and troubleshoot common problems is impactful because it improves their day-to-day experience. When used for IT support, employees can easily self-serve for things like application support, system access and password resets and other help desk requests. A HR virtual agent can provide instant support on company policies and procedures, payroll questions, time-off requests and expense report assistance. The technology can also be used for staff training, customer-facing employee support and product guides. They are an efficient way for employees to find information and get answers to their questions as they go about their daily jobs.

It was predicted last year that by 2020, 20% of organisations would include employee engagement improvement as a performance objective for HR and IT. And with the business benefits associated with higher employee engagement, that’s no surprise. Just as companies are working to better serve digitally-savvy, highly connected customers, they also need to do the same for digitally-savvy, highly connected employees if they want to create a better experience and improved engagement.

Check out Creative Virtual’s V-Person™ for Employee Support overview for a more detailed look at how our chatbot and virtual agent technology is currently being used by organisations around the world – from large government departments to international financial brands – to improve the employee experience.

The Digital Workplace in 2019

By Liam Ryan, Sales Director

In the survey results published by HR.com at the end of 2018, 79% of Human Resources (HR) professionals responded that chatbots and virtual assistants will become an increasingly viable way for employees to get real-time answers to their HR-related questions. Yet that same report identified that only about 10% of organisations are currently making use of artificial intelligence (AI) for HR purposes now.

One of the main takeaways from the recent Digital Workplace Directors Forum in London reflected the findings published in that report. While many organisations understand the benefits of using this technology, only a limited number of forward-thinking companies have done anything about it yet. That’s changing though as organisations add AI, chatbots and virtual agents to their 2019 roadmaps and digital workplace initiatives.

The agenda for the forum included a variety of speakers covering current workplace case studies and predictions for the future of the digital workplace. Creative Virtual Founder & CEO, Chris Ezekiel, was one of the expert speakers and shared insights and live demonstrations of conversational AI solutions for employee engagement. He showed how our virtual agents and chatbots are being used by organisations in a variety of sectors to provide a quick and easy self-service solution for HR and IT service desk support. He also showed how these automated solutions can be seamlessly integrated with human-assisted channels, such as live chat, as well as other existing backend systems, such as ticketing systems and third-party databases. One success story he shared was how a large government department is using our technology to reduce internal service desk costs and improve employee productivity.

Many of the discussions I had with other forum attendees reflected conversations I had at a customer and employee engagement event a couple of months ago. Organisations are coming to understand the benefits of providing better and easier support for employees and are placing an increased focus on improving employee engagement in 2019. Chatbots and virtual agents are proven tools in the digital workplace for everything from onboarding new employees to helping troubleshoot common IT issues to training contact centre agents.

If you weren’t at the event or missed Chris’ presentation, be sure to request a live demo to see our chatbot, virtual agent and live chat technology in action for yourself.

Our thanks to Engage Employee for inviting Creative Virtual to sponsor your first event of the year.