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Conversational AI
4 min read
December 21, 2022

How Nestlé automated nearly 8,000 hours of recruiting work this year.

Poof. Gone. This is the story of how one of the leading consumer brands in the world took thousands of hours of manual recruiting tasks and made them disappear.

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Oftentimes you don’t realize how much something matters until it’s gone. 

Imagine a Halloween haul without Kit Kats or Butterfingers, a fridge without a case of crisp Pellegrino, a freezer without DiGiorno’s pizza or Hot Pockets. 

Poof. Bye-bye.

Such would be a world without Nestlé goodies — one that I don’t think any of us would want to live in. But let’s flip that; sometimes absence can actually be a good thing. Removing obstacles, eliminating roadblocks, creating voids to be filled by something better…that’s often how true transformation occurs. 

Let’s use Nestlé as an example again: Prior to 2022, their global recruiting teams were spending over 8,000 hours per month scheduling and rescheduling interviews. And then they asked themselves an important question: What if all that time spent playing candidate/manage coordinator suddenly … disappeared?

What else could recruiting teams accomplish with those 8,000 hours? What work could they get done? Who could they form connections with? And how much happier would they be?

The sort of all encompassing answer: a lot.

So that’s the opportunity that Nestlé saw — a chance to change; but more importantly, a chance to strip away a time-consuming recruiting process down to its studs, and build it back up into something better.

This is that “something better.”

Here’s how Nestlé automated nearly 8,000 hours of recruiting work.

It wasn’t quite as easy as “poof, gone.” But close. 

The challenge, of course, was figuring out how to offload that much work, and that many conversations, for a massive amount of candidates (we’re talking close to nine million career site visits annually), without sacrificing the quality standards people have come to expect from a globally beloved brand.

Nestlé products are approachable and reliable. They give you that warm fuzzy feeling. 

And they wanted their applications to feel the same.

The solution to creating that scaleable yet personal experience was automation; a conversational assistant named Olivia who automates recruiting tasks like screening and interview scheduling via quick messages right on the career site or a mobile device. It looks like this:

 


“With Olivia, there are frictionless conversations going on while the recruiters are doing that valuable stuff,” said Lisa Scales, Nestlé head of talent acquisition in the UK. “From my point of view, recruiters need to be talent advisors. They’re talking to hiring managers about more than recruiting for a role. They’re talking about organizational design and shaping the organization going forward.

“But they don’t have the time to do that if they’re doing admin tasks.” 

In just one year, Olivia:

  1. Fully scheduled over 25,000 candidate interviews for high skill roles (a 600% increase YoY!)
  2. Led 360,000+ candidates interactions on the Nestlé career site
  3. Saved roughly 8,000 total hours of time

So Olivia hasn’t eliminated all of that repetitive admin work (yet), but that’s still a lot of time saved. And with seamless integrations into SAP SuccessFactors, recruiters are able to track candidate information and prompt Olivia to schedule interviews and take actions in just a few clicks from a system they’re familiar with. 

This all means that Nestlé’s recruiters are now able to focus on impacting the business in the unique ways that only they can. And, perhaps most importantly, they’re happier than ever.

“Retaining recruiters is as important as retaining as anyone else,” said Scales. “Lot’s of companies are struggling to hire recruiters right now, and it’s a hard job. So creating a great recruiter experience is obviously advantageous.”

A candidate experience that’s faster, but also friendlier. 

OK, so 25,000 interviews. That’s a lot.

It was the end result of Olivia engaging in over 700,000 unique candidate conversations and answering more than 1.5 million questions. All automated, all removed from the recruiter’s workload. That’s a great recruiter experience.

But what about the candidate experience? In short: that warm fuzzy feeling.

Since Olivia responds immediately, 24/7, 365, she gets to candidates first and (last), creating a respectable white glove experience at scale. No more ghosting or black hole — in fact, the reception to Olivia has been so positive that Nestlé’s net promoter score (a measure used to gauge customer loyalty, satisfaction, and enthusiasm) has increased over five points since implementation. 

“We’ve gotten to a place that I would consider ‘frictionless recruitment,’” Scales said.

Frictionless.

That’s a good thing to be. Because unlike Butterfingers or Hot Pockets, friction is something that everyone — especially recruiters and candidates — can do without. 

Written by
Erik Schmidt
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Sr. Content Manager
Erik Schmidt
Written by
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