This year’s HR Technology Award was tightly contested but the judges decided that Peninsula’s ‘outstanding’ use of artificial intelligence to support its HR clients’ access to knowledge and solutions was the most innovative and effective initiative.
Peninsula Business Services
Peninsula is a Manchester-based HR, employment law, and health and safety consultancy that supports over 35,000 small to medium-sized enterprises across the UK and Ireland.
It has grown from a handful of telephone-based employment law consultants to a team of nearly 200 experts across its Manchester and Glasgow offices and remote team. However, bringing in more and more people to take calls or answer emails is neither cost-effective nor efficient. It addressed the issue by developing and introducing an artificial intelligence system called BrAinbox to support its clients with instant access.
Once the BrAInbox roadshows had concluded at the start of 2022 and all staff felt comfortable and confident with the roll-out of the new technology, it was launched to clients. Peninsula already had a database of 7,500 high quality and approved HR queries across over 20 topics, which continues to grow on a daily basis.
Access to the BrAInbox platform was provided to a small number of clients initially, to test the site and provide feedback before opening this up via a launch email to all 35,000 clients. It has received 17,206 questions on BrAInbox with clients getting instant access to answers 24 hours a day from anywhere.
Health and safety procedures and new hotel processes can be fast moving and content can change regularly. Previous face-to-face approaches and manual training methods resulted in limited knowledge transfer and were potentially subject to fraudulent completion to demonstrate compliance. Audits discovered that the training wasn’t completed in a timely manner and this was impacted by the management team having less time to train their new starters during busier periods.
Travelodge Hotels built a complete suite of data dashboards at all levels to track completion to evidence that every employee had completed their essential health and safety training and had a plan in place and an agreed date of when they would complete it. The company replaced all of its manual health and safety methods with online learning in short bitesize e-learning modules and self-guided learning through a cyclical risk and assurance calendar.
Since the launch of the Training Toolkit in October 2020 and the new e-Learning Hub in July 2021, the average e-learning module completion per employee has risen from four modules to 20 modules and now includes customer service, gamification and full in module question and answer analysis so that the learning is enjoyable (because it isn’t repetitive). The speed to reach desired completion rates has increased from 90 days to less than 30 days for new starter modules. The total number of views of the Training Toolkit is now averaging 20,000 views per 30 days (with circa 1,000 new starters).
Stein IAS is a digital B2B marketing agency with 84 people, including strategists, content writers, artistic creatives, digital marketing planners and client service operatives. In every single one of these disciplines, the digital evolution of the last decade, has completely transformed knowledge requirements.
The agency has expanded from its Bollington, Cheshire base, and now has offices in London, New York, San Francisco, Paris, Hyderabad and Shanghai. This means that serious commitment is required to build and maintain a unified culture, with shared knowledge at its heart.
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The objectives of the Universal Knowledge Foundation project are to: create a digital one-stop-shop for all the company’s essential knowledge, with a slick, engaging user experience; to free up HR staff time for recruitment and people management; and generate universal awareness of the new Stein IAS leadership approach.
The Universal Knowledge Foundation web app, was developed entirely in house using spare UX and development capacity. There are currently seven modules covering: B2B marketing basics, values and culture, the offering, commercial procedures, new business approach, leadership and coaching.
Overall, the 84 Stein IAS employees have passed 222 modules, giving a total module completion rate of 38%. Altogether, 72 people have passed at least 1 module, to give an engagement rate of 86%. There are nine ‘Complete Legends’. Every member of the management team, has completed the leadership module, instantly generating 100% awareness of the company’s new leadership approach, among the most important target group. The people team estimates that the Universal Knowledge Foundation has saved 40 days of HR staff time.
Clyde & Co in partnership with Cappfinity
Global law firm Clyde & Co wanted to overhaul its existing early careers recruitment process, to create a more efficient, inclusive, and technology-led solution for the benefit of both candidates and the firm. It decided to implement a digital solution that would transform the way early career candidates were assessed. HR tech firm Cappfinity, a leader in strengths-based assessment, recruitment and development, was approached to create an efficient and engaging solution that would remove bias in the recruitment process and transform the candidate experience.
The starting point for the solution was the design. Clyde & Co knew that its solution needed to appeal to Generation Z. It needed to be truly engaging, different in its approach and encourage authenticity. Cappfinity’s digital assessment and recruitment product, Simulate, was used to provide candidates with a realistic preview of the role, presenting them with real life tasks and challenges to understand and work through. Using a digital and immersive assessment process also allowed candidates to gain a better understanding of the culture and working environment.
Clyde & Co and Cappfinity have been delighted by the results from the implementation of the solution, which has so far been completed by 2,387 candidates with a reduced average completion time of under 45 minutes (a reduction of more than 50%). Increased productivity in the Early Careers Team means it has been able to deliver 30 more events (an increase of 100% on previous years), enabling more attraction activities for diverse talent, as well as skills sessions to prepare candidates for the new assessments..
Tesco in partnership with Electric Circus
The UK’s largest retailer wanted colleagues to learn how food waste impacts the planet and contributes to climate
change. A plan to deliver a memorable digital learning experience to engage learners with the topic was created. Tesco initially produced a video to help colleagues understand the importance of what it was trying to achieve for the good of the planet and to highlight all the simple ways they could help.
The business case for this initiative had to be clear and compelling. It was intrinsically linked to Tesco’s sustainability goals and the positive impact it would have on employees’ motivation for making changes.
Following this, a series of complex topics such as anaerobic-digestion were translated into bite-sized and easy to understand material, so people could identify why and how they could make changes to their actions at work and at home, to help the planet. The learning experience culminated in an online game designed to give colleagues a fun way of testing their learning. It was designed and developed from scratch and saw us using brand new technology, never before used in the Tesco business.
Overall in 2021-22 Tesco has achieved an 18% increase in the amount of surplus food redistributed to charity, community groups, and OLIO and a 31% reduction in food waste as a % of food handled, which means the retailer is more than halfway to meeting its goal of halving food waste by 50% by 2030.
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