Here is how to manage your users’ AI expectations
When it comes to implementing artificial intelligence (AI) solutions, companies should anticipate a wide spectrum of reactions from employees (anxieties about potential impact on their jobs), customers (anticipation of amazing new features), and the C-suite (expectations of unprecedented efficiencies).
Regardless of how these various parties feel about AI in the abstract, the reality is that these technologies will only become more prominent in our lives. There is no one correct way to introduce employees and customers to autonomic shared services systems like 1Desk or digital colleagues like Amelia — it depends on the individual culture of your business. There are, however, important strategies to consider as you move forward.
Here are four things to think about:
Start thinking about messaging early
While AI is not new to enterprise, many users may be new to interacting with it first-hand – particularly when it comes to advanced digital colleagues like Amelia. When introducing her to your organization, you should start planning early in regards to thinking about which channels will be most effective to inform users (blog posts, videos, newsletters, etc.).
Furthermore, introducing these technologies on the consumer side should not be viewed as a one-and-done strategy. As one marketer put it “share the big news with customers, then share it again.” For example, you may want to produce a brief how-to-access-Amelia video and blog post and then share it though all mediums and social outlets multiple times.
When it comes to introducing Amelia internally to your employees, you will want to consider more detailed blog posts and instructional videos specifically tailored to how they will interact with her.
Think big (but start small)
Technologies like Amelia deliver increased efficiency to your organization and enhanced service to your customers. However, as with any new technology, there can be a learning curve to overcome for users, and reservations to address among decision-makers.
Many companies begin with limited roles, and — after achieving success — expand from there. For example, one of the United States’ largest mutual life providers hired Amelia to field customer questions via chat, where she quickly achieved a 95% success rate. Only after this initial triumph, and after employees reported high satisfaction rates working with Amelia, did the company decide to use her voice capabilities in other parts of her business. (You can find recent case studies with similar paths here.)
Aside from helping to smooth-out any technical matters, limited roll-outs can help with messaging. As you gauge user reaction all along the path, you are able to reassess your strategy with each step moving forward. For example, you can use analytics to discern if that instructional video received the anticipated traffic or if users on social media responded well to your messaging, and then adjust accordingly. Direct feedback from employees and viewers also can be taken into account for any messaging tweaks.
One of the oft-repeated mantras in business is “underpromise and overdeliver.” When it comes to cognitive solutions, this is particularly apt. Explain to your employees and customers Amelia’s potential, and then allow her to impress them with her abilities. All the while, keep in mind that with more experience, Amelia improves at tasks over time, so results will only improve as you move forward.
Clearly communicate how employee roles will change
Autonomic technologies will redefine the way humans work. AI can automate many routine (and frankly, boring) tasks and free human workers to address more complex issues with creative problem solving.
While some employees may fear that AI will replace them, you should reinforce the idea that AI will make their work lives better by taking on much of the “heavy lifting” of routine and transactional tasks. And, as it turns out, this shouldn’t necessarily be a hard sell. According to a 2017 survey, 78% of respondents say automation would allow them to “spend more time on the interesting and rewarding aspects of their job.” This aspect should be highlighted, but employees should also be invited to suggest ways their experience and expertise could be reapplied to help the organization.
Cognitive AI is a new experience for many users and companies. Moving forward with determination and versatility will help your company’s customers, employees, and decision makers make a smooth transition into this disruptive new paradigm.