The future of work: Answers!
We think this is the most important question. For employees; the right answers are a necessity to be confident and successful in their jobs. For your customers and partners, gaining confidence with the right answers about your products or services is a necessity before buying. Do they feel confident after the sale their questions will be addressed?
It’s a simple and key question for every employee, partner or customer as they interact with your organization. Everyone who has a job question simply asks their peers or manager. But this has always been an inefficient way and prone to stigma. No one wants to look like they don’t know what they’re doing. Or worse, the peer or manager being asked may not know the answer or provide the wrong one.
For customers and partners, the sales journey is reduced by having right answers to their questions based on their profile, rather then having to speak to an agent or sales person.
Before Covid-19, every job in every industry had become more complex, competitive, with a higher turnover and was more demanding with less time to ramp up and internalize what’s needed for employees to achieve success. Customers and partners have wanted the answers to questions without having to speak directly to an agent or sales person. Call center technologies, which helped call center agents find answers proliferate, but they have focused on trying to improve the customer call instead of removing the need for a call in the first place. Virtual assistant pop-up chatbots offer FAQ generalized assistance. More complex and intelligent systems which yield better results to questions generally require huge budgets and time to implement them and tend to be brittle as the underlying service content changes.
Covid-19 has only exacerbated all this. At least before, everyone could more easily “tap the shoulder” of a colleague, manager or friend if they had a job or product question. Customers and employees stationed at home prefer getting answers without having to directly engage with someone by chat, phone and certainly not in-person. Employees working on-site are stretched thin; so there’s even less encouragement to foster questions. Greater agility and speed to getting the right answers with less required interaction is now everyone’s goal.
According to a recent PwC survey for the future workforce, 60% of the surveyed workforce believes their job roles will not be there for them in the long term because of changing technology, economic and corporate landscapes. 74% of them are willing to retrain to remain employable. According to Bersin by Deloitte, companies around the world are spending $250 billion a year to try and solve for this. They seek a practical way for employees to learn their job while ensuring the greatest number of them stay and achieve success in the shortest time is a strategic priority. Existing learning, performance and knowledge management solutions have challenges to meeting these goals.
Traditional learning systems, LMSs and sales enablement platforms are great at delivering a crafted curriculum at the beginning of an employee’s job tenure and setting a cultural stage and mindset for employees to begin their role, and occasionally for follow-up training. All content is crafted regardless of size to be consumed as a whole; varying from 5 – 10 minutes to consume micro learning to longer. Examples of these are Docebo and others like Cornerstone-On-Demand.
Their challenge is they require employees to set aside time they don’t have while they are doing their job to consume learning content. Employees are looking for the answers in content already produced outside of learning content. Few have time or the desire to uncover the required answer themselves. Relying on learning systems as a lasting solution doesn’t work since less than 25% of what employees are taught is retained 30 days later. Typically they will just ask peers or managers after completing their training which negates the ongoing role of such learning and enablement systems. Often, they stop using these systems once onboarded or if their use becomes optional.
Knowledge management and enterprise search systems like Getguru, Talla, Bloomfire, Zendesk and Coveo have come a long way in understanding the relationship of content to all other content. Auto tagging and AI have the potential to take much of the manual curation out of organizing a company’s content. Their focus is on curating content in relation to all the rest of an organization’s content and the collective experience of all employees. But not dynamically curated in real-time to specific employee actions and job role and that of their peers within and outside of their organization to improve answer accuracy for a specific job. They lack the a high fidelity tracking of everything employees, customers or partners do to interpret a high degree of personalization. This means these systems lack the ability to predict what answers or content snippets users will find most useful at the right moment. Existing systems to date have been most successful for large projects utilizing large teams to deploy or for call center teams where content delivery is matched to questions customers pose to the call center teams.
What we believe makes Feathercap’s predictive answer platform successful:
We track everything employees or customers view
We measure every document, every page, every passage, every second of video they view. All content is tracked as employees create, consume, search and add their content directly or automatically through Dropbox, Box, One Drive, Sharepoint, Google Drive.
We measure a lot to develop success metrics
Where some see a team member or customer searching how to perform a task through existing content, spending a few seconds on one PDF then reviewing a video till they get the right answer to their question, we see these as success metrics that we correlate to the entire team’s available content viewed or been assigned to view. Along with their peers content and behavior both within their company and peers in other companies. Typical success metrics: When did they ask a question? View the answer? How often compared to their peers? How difficult did they find the content based on their viewing behavior compared to their peers?
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