How innovative tools changed the HR processes at EY

Brian Eble sat down with TechRepublic at the 2019 SAP SAPPHIRE NOW conference to talk about how innovative tools have changed expectations within HR.

How innovative tools changed the HR processes at EY

At SAP SAPPHIRE NOW 2019, TechRepublic Associate Staff Writer Macy Bayern sits down with Brian Eble, director of IT service delivery leader at EY to discuss how innovative tools have changed expectations within HR. The following is an edited transcript of the interview.

Macy Bayern: How have innovative tools changed the HR experience at your company?

Brian Eble: Innovative tools have really, over the last few years, had a pronounced impact across HR and it's really changed the expectations people have in all honesty. Our organization at EY, the overwhelming majority of our organization is under the age of 30. We have a constant need to be on top of the technology from an expectation of what people have, all the way from the recruitment stage through the alumni stage.

And things that, if you look back five or ten years ago and everyone talked about mobile, that's a given now. The expectation is there. So really it's pushing to make sure that we take advantage of the newer areas of AI, blockchain, etc. And sometimes the experiences behind the scenes, other times it's very much in front of you. For example, we actually have put in some chatbots with AI features, which allow people to interact whenever they want, however they want, with us.

We've had a lot of success with that. We originally thought maybe a few hundred types of questions would come through and we've gotten tens of thousands.

Which is great and it's actually helped not just from a theoretical, oh so they can answer questions, but it's helped as part of our change process as we've evolved at HR and at EY we call it talent, because obviously one of our key assets is our people, if not the most key asset to be fair.

What it's allowed us to do is it helps really enable the change as we've progressed with the way that we evaluate and do performance management, we launched in conjunction with that an AI featured bot that allowed people to understand and ask questions to really get to the new way of working.

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But also now we've learned how they use it. It's been fun. Some people like to have some fun with it, other people obviously a little bit more geared towards actual work activities, but it is a fun way to interact with people and we can have a little bit of playfulness with it. But obviously focusing on what's the message we're trying to deliver?

Other key things as we've worked with our advisory services teams, we're exploring the use of blockchain and a lot of time's people are like, well that's more for finance or bitcoins and things like that. But in HR validated data is a key thing.

If there's a way to have that much more readily available to us, think about tactical background checks, think about educations, and also, how do we even recognize our own employees? We've launched something called EY Badges within EY around specific things. So for example, there's actually an artificial intelligence badge and it has various levels, bronze, platinum, etc. But how do you certify that? And how does somebody take that certification with them? How is it recognized in the marketplace? Those types of things play very, very well to technology like the blockchain.

In some cases, it's traditional things like we've all had degrees for hundreds of years, but now it's how do I validate them? How do I recognize them in the market and take advantage of some of these technologies in a different way so that it's transportable, it's viewable, it's also very-certified, which is very key for people.

You know, you look at LinkedIn skills and it's like, okay good to know, but maybe not the most thorough backing in many ways, that somebody clicked yes I agree. Where as you're leveraging blockchain and other technologies allow us to provide a much more thorough certification, gives people a better experience as well, and like I said, it's a very transparent way to operate.

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