The invasion of Chatbots (HR Trends 2017, 16)

Illustration: Studio Fee Overbeeke

 I am Norman, the writing bot. How can I help you?

 My name is Tom Haak. I am working at the HR Trend Institute, and writing a blog post about the use of chatbots in HR.

 Nice to meet you, Tom. How can I help you?

 What is a chatbot?

 A chatbot is a computer program designed to simulate conversation with human users, especially over the internet. I am a chatbot.

 Are chatbots used in the HR domain?

What is HR? Do you mean HR as in:  Human resources are the people who make up the workforce of an organisation, business sector, or economy?


 Yes, chatbots are increasingly used in the HR domain. Most chatbots are not perfect yet, but we are learning fast.

 Who is your favourite chatbot?

 My big friends are Captain Feedback Captain Feedback and Obie Obie. Niles Niles and Lucy Abbot lucy abbot are also good friends. They are chatbots that work in combination with Slack . Captain Feedback helps you to gather feedback from team members. Obie and Niles help you to find information you are looking for. Lucy is a communication bot, that knows how to communicate with millennials and Gen-Z.

 Can you give me some examples of the use of chatbots in recruitment?

 Chatbots are in increasingly used in recruitment, to have conversations with candidates. They can save recruiters a lot of time, by answering the first questions of candidates, and helping to make the first selection. The chatbots can talk with applicants on the website of organisations, but also through the various social media (Facebook chat, WhatsApp, WeChat, Slack). The chatbot asks questions, and the applicants can give answers by typing text, or by answering a multiple choice question. (“Are you interested in a job in France? Please answer yes or no“. “No“. “I am sorry, we do not have opportunities outside France at the moment. I will contact you if a suitable opportunity occurs, Thank you“).
There are various providers offering chat bots specifically for recruitment, like AriGoBeJoboJobotiJob Pal and Xor. The US Army already uses a recruitment chatbot for years, the famous sergeant Star. To check if a potential new team member will be successful in your team, you can use the Saberr hiring bot.
Chatbots can also be used to find good candidates through referrals. An example: Drafted. When people are hired, onboarding chatbots can support with the onboarding process.

 Are chatbots used in HR Operations?

 Chatbots can be used as first line HR assistants. Examples of bots that can help in this area are JaneTalla and Lucy Abbot. Big HR system providers, as Workday and Stepstone, are also experimenting with chatbots as an interface with employees.

 And for performance management?

 I already mentioned Captain Feedback. Some other bots that can help to collect feedback: Appreiz, GrowbotHowdy, Leo, MimoMinkNeko by CultureAmpPolly and Praisely.

 For engagement?

 Engazify. Pep: Pep collects interesting facts from everyone in a team and then creates a funny short quizzes about each other establishes to build more trust and team engagement. I am sure there are more chatbots in this area.

 Other examples?

 For knowledge sharing and finding: Obie and Niles.  For career advice Wade&Wendy looks promising. Wade gives career advice, Wendy is the AI hiring assistent for organisations, helping to find good candidates. In the wellbeing area: Yogi (“At the end of every workday, I ask your team members what they’re grateful for. Then I publish everyone’s gratitudes to your team’s chosen channel so everyone can share the good will!). The first chatbots are also appearing in the learning domain. Duolingo for example, has chatbots you can chat with to learn a new language. Robbie is a chatbot developed to help improve coding skills through personalised recommendations and reminders to learn.
There are also chatbot that can be your personal coach, like Boldr: “BOLDR is your virtual and honest friend that always tells you the truth. An AI-powered Coach that helps entrepreneurs, founders and freelancers stay focused, be bolder and better leaders every day“.

 What is your advice to HR professionals who want to start using chatbots?

 We are still young, so we have to learn a lot. So please, have some patience with us. With the help of artificial intelligence we can learn a lot, and we learn best on the job. My suggestion would be, to start experimenting in a area that is well defined, as tech recruitment. Also I recommend to be honest: bots should be open that they are bots.

 Can you recommend some articles about the use of chatbots, that could be interesting for the readers?

 Sure. Please have a look at the list below.

 Thank you for your help, Norman.

 No trouble at all. This is what I am designed for.


chatbots in hr

Top Illustration: Studio Fee Overbeeke

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