How can artificial intelligence improve the experience of the people in your workplace? It might sound like a contradiction in terms, but when AI is used strategically, it can actually help enhance several elements of your employee experience — without replacing anyone’s job.
Many of the elements that improve the employee experience once worked smoothly when everyone was onsite all the time. With the rise of remote and hybrid work, there are many benefits but also often more friction in the new employee experience — and that’s an area where AI can help soften some of those rough edges. Plus, it can boost efficiency and take repetitive manual tasks off employees’ plates.
Those perks and pros are critical, partly because employees are still largely skeptical of the benefits of AI at work. 66% of executives say AI will have a positive effect on the employee experience, compared to just 35% of individual contributors (and 31% of ICs say it will have a negative effect). So there’s plenty of work to be done to convince employees that AI is largely a positive, not a threat.
These six ways AI can improve the employee experience should help — let’s dive into how you can use AI for the good of your employees.
1. Smooth Out the Onboarding Process
Onboarding new employees is often a time-consuming and manual process — their paperwork and training tasks need to be assigned, checked for completion, and followed up on to ensure everything is finished. Tasks, even critical ones, often get overlooked or missed and so onboarding either takes longer than it should or skips important steps. This is especially true when Human Resources teams are stretched thin, as they too often are these days.
AI can offer a great solution here — by automating the assignment of the necessary paperwork and required trainings, your team can make sure every employee is successfully and quickly onboarded without spending precious HR resources on followup. And in case something goes awry and human help is needed, AI can automatically assign an HR rep to help out.
2. Improve Access to IT Help for Remote Employees
As employees increasingly spend at least one or two days a week working from home, they lose access to the on-site IT pros who could help them get set up or troubleshoot their technology they need to get their work done. AI can help here, especially with very frequent tasks like resetting passwords and fixing VPN access, via chatbots or other AI tools.
While IT will still need to be available for the larger issues and fixes, workers who simply need to reset their password or figure out why they can’t sign on will be able to solve these issues in real-time without taking up a tech’s time or waiting for someone to come online. AI can deliver these predictable fixes with ease, freeing everyone up for the more critical work and problem-solving that only a human can do.
3. Reduce Disengaging Tasks
Burnout is often caused, or increased, by tasks that are repetitive and tedious — employees often see them as busywork — or by inefficient processes that make projects more work than they need to be and needlessly increase workloads. Your employees know which tasks these are, so why not develop ways to use AI to minimize the manual tasks or eliminate them altogether?
You can also use AI to develop smarter workflows to reduce those inefficient processes that hinder getting work done. For example, you could use AI to provide automatic reminders of who owns what part of a task, and ping people when something is needed to keep a project moving. Work that feels meaningful and flows smoothly is much better for employee engagement and satisfaction — frustration and feelings of being stuck aren’t good for anyone’s morale.
4. Offer Better Customer Support
While this might seem like a benefit only for customers, it’s a huge boon to employees in your customer care team as well — their jobs are more satisfying and less frustrating when they have everything they need at their fingertips to serve your customers well and quickly. Providing a better customer experience benefits everyone.
AI can be used to pull relevant information from previous conversations up automatically while a CS employee is talking to a customer, for example, so they can avoid asking the customer to repeat themselves (which is a frustrating experience for everyone involved). Your CSM system likely has reams of data on your customers, but it’s not serving anyone if employees can’t find what they need right away. AI can do that for them.
Enabling your team members to do their jobs — providing care and support for your customers — with all the information they need is great for both customer and employee satisfaction in the long run.
5. Assigning Career Development Tasks
Employees are very drawn to companies that help them learn, grow, and develop their careers. But determining which trainings would benefit them, and how to access them and fit them into their schedule, can be significant barriers to that growth and even hinder employee performance.
Managers are typically responsible for developing a career plan and finding trainings, along with HR help, but in busy times these tasks are too often overlooked. In fact, only 25% of employees strongly agree that their manager invests in their professional development, and that neglect affects their job satisfaction and retention.
AI can help make creating and executing these development plans for employees easier for managers, while also making them highly customized to each employee’s skills, goals, and dreams. By helping employees reskill, upskill, and train for the career path they want, you’re creating a more positive environment for retention and engagement.
6. Extract More Insights from Employee Surveys
Hopefully your organization is already surveying employees regularly to gauge their levels of engagement, satisfaction, and experience overall. But compiling and understanding all the data you receive from these engagement surveys — particularly if you conduct them frequently with pulse surveys — can be overwhelming, and you can miss out on critical insights over time.
New technologies powered by AI can help your HR teams uncover trends, gaps, opportunities, and other insights from your survey data you might otherwise have missed, including predictive analytics for future performance. It can be particularly helpful when looking back over the past to notice any trends or track improvement because you can synthesize a huge amount of metrics and data at once. You could examine how employee sentiment has changed over time, track how changes in your employee experience were received, or compare your company to external benchmarks with ease.
Finding More Ways to Enhance Your Employee Experience
AI offers exciting possibilities for HR teams and leaders looking for innovative ways to improve the entire employee experience — without removing the critical need for the human element and interactions. From streamlining routine HR processes to synthesizing employee feedback and eliminating repetitive tasks and making remote work easier, the smart use of AI can boost your employee well-being and work environment.
Looking for more tech to help you upgrade your employee experience and your workplace culture? Cooleaf can help, with solutions like employee engagement surveys, tailored engagement programs, and recognition and awards automation.