5 Ways HR Teams Can Leverage AI Chatbots To Enrich Employee Lifecycle


AI chatbots strengthen the capabilities of HR teams by providing an intelligent, always-on, user-friendly tool for improving the employee experience. They can automate routine workflows and improve onboarding, communication, engagement, and training and development, explains Mike Hicks, chief marketing officer, Beezy.

 AI chatbots are everywhere, and more are on the way. But it’s a good kind of invasion, especially in HR.

These are relatively early days for intelligent assistants in HR, but organizations would be wise to start considering all the ways they can support a more positive employee experience.

Pre-COVID-19, there were many upsides to bot technology. But now, in this unpredictable era of remote work and employee stress, there’s even more need for companies to adopt these kinds of tools.

It’s no surprise that AI chatbots are growing in popularity. They’re one of the top AI trends to watch in 2021. And GartnerOpens a new window predicts 70% of white-collar workers will have daily interactions with conversational platforms by 2022.

These interactions can help alleviate the tremendous load on today’s HR leaders and practitioners, who are struggling to guide employees through the new realities of work while still managing countless — often manual — business processes.

By providing an intelligent, always-on, user-friendly tool for meeting employee needs and expectations, AI chatbots help make people’s work lives a bit easier and free up HR teams to focus on more creative, higher-order priorities.

Learn More: What AI Regulations From the EU and FTC Mean for HR Practitioners

Chatbots in the Digital Workplace

In the digital workplace, chatbots function as intelligent assistants. As employees work, the chatbot gets trained and updated, automatically learning about employees’ skills, patterns, questions, and connections.

A no-code or low-code AI chatbot helps users find apps, tools, and information without wasting time searching. It can answer questions, provide notifications, nudge action on specific tasks, and point people to helpful content or colleagues.

The opportunities for saving time and money while maximizing the advantages of a digital workplace with AI chatbots are endless. Other organization-wide benefits include:

  • 24/7 access to smart assistance
  • Multilingual functionality
  • Integration with third-party tools and platforms to accelerate business processes

5 Ways HR Can Benefit From AI Chatbots

The right AI-powered chatbot can enrich the entire employee lifecycle, from recruitment and onboarding to career development. Here are five ways it can help HR leaders and practitioners.

1. Strengthen onboarding

In many organizations, onboarding is still a manual process. New hires are faced with large volumes of static learning content, with little guidance on navigating the resources and processes they’ll need in their roles.

Yet, a positive onboarding experience is essential to future success. Research has found that a strong onboarding process improves both productivity and retention.

An intelligent assistant modernizes the process from day one by automating recruitment activities from screening candidates to scheduling interviews. When new employees join the organization, an AI chatbot can proactively reach out to deliver content and training material that’s directly relevant to their jobs.

2. Speed up routine workflows and free up strategic opportunities

Relentless, repetitive administrative tasks are unfortunately part of the job for HR teams, especially in large, distributed organizations. When many of these processes are manual, they require time and energy that could be much better spent in areas such as one-on-one coaching or career planning.

AI chatbots have created opportunities for HROpens a new window , automating and augmenting common HR processes such as scheduling, attendance tracking, and performance reviews. They can also simplify the administration of employee benefits by personalizing communication about benefit changes and tracking compliance.

Instead of employees constantly reaching out to the HR team with frequently asked questions, an AI chatbot can quickly direct them to the appropriate procedures. When someone wants to book time off, for example, a bot can collect the necessary information, pass it along to the right systems such as Workday or ServiceNow, and facilitate approval.

3. Provide a personalized employee experience

In our increasingly digital world, expectations for on-demand experiences in every realm of life are growing. Just like consumers, employees expect enjoyable, efficient interactions where answers and information are at their fingertips.

It’s impossible for even the largest and most sophisticated HR teams to deliver that kind of highly personalized experience to every employee. Yet, an intelligent assistant can bridge the gap, offering an edge in the competitive recruitment and retention landscape.

AI chatbots are available anywhere, anytime to provide individualized HR guidance based on deep learning about employees’ preferences and contexts. And they can do this in a “friendly” way since the latest bots enable organizations to customize their personality and tone of voice.

4. Foster employee wellness and engagement

Now more than ever, organizations need to monitor employee wellbeing and morale. Unaddressed pandemic-driven mental health issues and burnout could have a significant impact on business continuity, company culture and employee engagement.

Traditional employee surveys tend to be unproductive, often asking the wrong questions at the wrong time. An AI chatbot, on the other hand, is constantly gathering information about employee sentiment and behavior. According to McKinseyOpens a new window , collecting data via natural language processing is an effective way of gaining actionable insight into wellbeing.

For example, if an employee has been working late, a bot might ask if they’re feeling overwhelmed and suggest participation in the organization’s wellness program. It can also detect frustration, exhaustion, and related issues in employee communications and proactively recommend time off or helpful resources.

5. Enhance training and development

In overworked and under-resourced HR teams, employee development can fall to the bottom of the to-do list. When it comes to mandatory training, poor learner engagement and knowledge retention are ongoing problems.

An AI chatbot can mine the rich data available on employee strengths, challenges, and accomplishments to develop customized learning and development plans. Along the way, it can encourage employees and help them keep track of their goals.

A bot can also act as a real-time tutor, testing learners’ knowledge before assessments and later encouraging them to apply their new understanding in relevant workflows. To inject a little fun into the process, it can also gamify the learning experience with leaderboards and frequent progress updates.

Learn More: How AI-powered Surveys Can Boost HR Insights and Employee Experience

AI chatbots are poised to revolutionize HR. But keep these tips in mind before taking this next step on the path to digital transformation:

  • Don’t build your own. Choose a vendor that can provide an enterprise-grade chatbot.
  • Teach them well — groom bot technology with human expertise to avoid user frustration.
  • Preserve choice. Chatbots should be just one way for employees to navigate HR services.

With this advice top of mind, organizations can harness the power of AI chatbots to increase employee productivity and happiness while easing the burden on HR.