Conversational AI Report


Don't call it a chatbot, they've been here for years...


Seriously, call 'em chatbots, conversational AI, or fancy experience and productivity tools. It really doesn't matter if you don't understand the role of the tech and the solution to your everyday problems.


ENTER the 2021 Conversational AI Report by friend of the show Madeline Laurano and Aptitude Research. During this podcast we dig into some major points and tease others.


We ask:

  • Isn't this tech already part of our everyday routine?

  • Can conversation AI be more than a point solution?

  • Is conversational AI more than a high-volume play?

  • Can the ATS and CRM platforms even compete?

Again, Madeline has pulled together amazing intel that every Talent Acquisition, Recruiting, and Human Resources professional should download, digest, and share with their teams.


Enjoy the overview, brought to you by those wonderful kids over at Sovren.com. Sovren, was into parsing and AI matching before it was cool. Sovren, AI so human you'd like to take it to dinner.


PODCAST TRANSCRIPTION sponsored by:

Disability Solutions is your bridge to the disability community, delivering custom solutions in outreach, recruiting, talent management and compliance.


Sovren (2s):

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INTRO (1m 1s):

Hide your kids! Lock the doors! You're listening to HR’s most dangerous podcast. Chad Sowash and Joel Cheeseman are here to punch the recruiting industry, right where it hurts! Complete with breaking news, brash opinion and loads of snark, buckle up boys and girls, it's time for the Chad and Cheese podcast.


Chad (1m 22s):

Ah, that's right kids. Hey, what's up? It's Chad and I'm joined today looking bastards by Madeline Laurano founder at Aptitude Research. What's going on Madeline?


Madeline (1m 36s):

Hey Chad, thanks for having me back.


Chad (1m 38s):

Thanks for coming back. I wasn't sure if you'd come back or not.


Madeline (1m 43s):

No, always been busy, busy writing so excited to talk about some of the new research. I mean,


Chad (1m 47s):

You've come on. And we've talked about the ATS report. We talked about the programmatic report and you've got a new report that just came out. Which one is this?


Madeline (1m 56s):

This is conversational AI. And we started this report last year, we published one around July 2020, during the pandemic and now we revisited the topic this year. So I'm pretty excited about this one.


Chad (2m 9s):

Conversational AI kids. It doesn't get it doesn't get sexier.


Madeline (2m 14s):

No, it doesn't.


Chad (2m 16s):

Let's do this, before we get into the actual report and we start teasing it a little bit. Madeline, just in case our listeners have been in the fetal position or in a closet for the entire pandemic. Tell them a little bit about yourself.


Madeline (2m 30s):

Sure. So Hi everyone. My name is Madeline Laurano. I'm the founder of Aptitude Research. We do research advisory on HCM and all things, talent acquisition technology.


Chad (2m 40s):

Excellent. Excellent. So this report has a ton of takeaways, but we're going to only tease a few because people need to, they need to dig into this in total. I've gone through it. It's amazing. It's only 24 pages, which is awesome. It's a little bit easier to get through than the applicant tracking system, 150,000 pages, which was awesome as well, but great charts, graphs, graphics. So everyone listening and your teams should definitely download it, read it, digest it and talk amongst yourselves. So ready to jump in?


Madeline (3m 15s):

I'm ready.


Chad (3m 19s):

All right. So one of the points I want to get to is that the report talks about conversational AI is already prevalent in our every day lives. It shouldn't be something that, you know, we find obtrusive or intrusive or because we already use it.


Madeline (3m 36s):

Yeah. We use it in our personal lives. I think this is very different than other areas of, I mean, it's different than our programmatic conversation. I don't use programmatic in my personal life, but the conversational AI is something we use every day. We're using Alexa, we're using Siri. You know, our weather app is powered by conversational AI, at least mine is and we're used to it. And it's the difference with conversational AI in our personal lives is it's truly an assistant, right? It's like you use the, I need help with something so I'm going to go to Siri or Alexa and ask for help in way that they can support me. And it's that assistant that to me is, is really the differentiator.


Chad (4m 16s):

I love it. I tell you what I, I remember when I was a kid and remember War Games, the show War Games?


SFX (4m 25s):

Shall we play a game?


Chad (4m 28s):

So that wasn't audible where you could actually talk to the computer, but there was an audible kind of like response from the computer. I always waited. I always loved thinking of voice to voice. And now when I'm in the car, I'll tell, you know, my Google assistant navigate me home or navigate here, or I'll ask for, you know, questions for Google throughout the day. And my kids hate it. My kids hate it because they'll come to me, they'll come to me for a question. And I'll pick up my phone and I'll hit my assistant and say, Hey, Google and then I'll ask whatever question they just asked. And they look at me like, okay, I get it. For me, it is a part of it is a part of my life.


Chad (5m 9s):

And I think it's a part of most people's lives. The thing is conversational AI in our space seems to be seen as a point solution. So first off let's provide some context. What point is conversational AI usually cornered into right now? And where are the other points?


Madeline (5m 30s):

Yeah, I think it's usually cornered into the apply process or like the, either the recruitment marketing process or the screening process.


Chad (5m 38s):

Yeah.


Madeline (5m 38s):

It's like, we're just going to use a chat bot. The candidates have issues applying. We want to make sure they get through the process. They're interested in our company. They're interested in applying for a job as a barista, and we want to be able to show them that there are other locations close to where they live, where there are opportunities or the screening process they're going to ask some questions to get through. So that tends be where companies think that's where it comes in, serves a purpose. It's one thing. And that's it. And that's really a chat bot. A chat bot can just tackle that one thing. Conversational AI and the way a lot of companies are using it today is continuous, it's throughout all of talent acquisition, interviewing scheduling interviews, onboarding, helping a new hire say, Hey, we're so excited you joined this organization.


Chad (6m 20s):

Yeah.


Madeline (6m 21s):

Bring your lunch the first day, your manager's on vacation. Like little things like that, you know, people take for granted. So I think even the employee experience, internal mobility are becoming use cases. Yeah. McDonald's we featured them in the report and that's how they use it. It's an end to end.


Chad (6m 36s):

I think companies like McDonald's have been thinking out of the box for using technology for problems, right? And they're looking at problems and they're saying, how can we address them with technology. Conversational AI for them and if you think about it, it is a heavy load to lift, to be able to provide a much better, much faster application experience, which it does. But as you had said, many companies are actually turning conversational AI back onto employees.


Madeline (7m 12s):

Exactly, back to employees, thinking about internal opportunities, thinking about that employee experience. So I think it becomes very interesting and it's, you know, Chad it's and we've talked about this, you know, before this report. There've been acquisitions right? This year, we saw some conversational AI providers get acquired to do very specific things in sourcing or, you know, in kind of this one use case and interviewing, you know, AllyO as an example.