Read on Medium
Office administration work is a mundane yet essential component of any business across all industries. Companies, in particular large conglomerates, invest huge sums of money in administration manpower each year to keep these dull and repetitive chores running. In this article we explore how Conversational AI can transform your workplace to generate huge cost savings while boosting the overall productivity of your staff.
What is Conversational AI?
Traditionally, computers have only had the ability to comprehend data and coding languages, Conversational A.I. is a technology that empowers computers to understand and interact with humans in our natural languages like English and Chinese. Popular examples of Conversational A.I. applications available in the market today are chatbots and voice assistants like Siri and Google Assistant.
The technical term for Conversational A.I. is Natural Language Processing, or NLP for short. With the advent of deep machine learning — vastly increasing computational power and therefore problem-solving capabilities — there have been an explosion of new NLP solutions such as machine translation, sentiment analysis, speech recognition, text classification, and many others. These Conversational A.I. solutions create an emphasis on understanding and humanising the relationship between humans and computers, which has already seen some applications in improving customer service satisfaction. In this article, we will explore how Conversational AI can improve office administration applications.
Hiring an A.I. Office Assistant
For the majority of modern businesses, ‘e-mail’ is the most commonly used channel for both external and internal communication. In fact, a study held in 2017 found that, on average, employees spent between 2–3 hours a day reading and answering e-mails, or approximately one-third of the working day. That means that over the course of the year, each employee will have spent as much as 90 working days simply reading and answering e-mails.
Whist it would be unrealistic to eliminate e-mails altogether, an A.I. Office Assistant empowered with Conversational A.I. could read incoming emails and summarise the contents, even helping to generate responses, schedule appointments and create reports, thereby saving time for employees. By saving time spent on trivial tasks, employees can reinvest that time in to more value generating activities — saving costs, while boosting opportunities.
An often overlooked area of human resource management is the importance of maintaining and improving employee engagement. Companies with higher employee engagement ratings are reported to have 22% more profits and 21% more productivity than their counterparts with lower ratings. Improving communication between staff and the company is the key to increasing employee engagement. According to a study by Towers Watson, when neither leaders nor managers are perceived to be effective in communicating and driving engagement, only 8% of employees report being highly engaged. Hiring an Office Virtual Assistant to act as a representative of the company on general human resources issues can achieve this effect.
Engaging with employees is also likely to reduce staff turnover rates, which is desirable as on-boarding and training of new employees has traditionally been a significant drain on resources. However, even in this respect, by integrating internal operational workflow processes with an A.I. Office Assistant, new employees can receive training oversight and an intuitive step-by-step guidance for learning new processes at no additional cost to the company. IBM reportedly estimates that they have realised almost $1 billion in savings since by 2011 by integrating A.I. in their HR department. This human resources A.I. helps them with employee training, performance reviews, and even predicts which employee is getting ready to quit.
People’s expectations are changing in terms of how the modern business operates and businesses are faced with many difficult challenges, particularly during these turbulent times. By adopting an A.I. Office Assistant empowered by Conversational AI, companies will save significant time and effort for both staff and company, while simultaneously improving employee communication and engagement, boosting overall profitability and productivity of the business.
Carleton University. (2017. April 20). Carleton Study Finds People Spending a Third of Job Time on Email. [News Release]. Retrieved from.
Sorenson, S. (2013, June 20). How Employee Engagement Drives Growth. Gallup.