Conversational AI
4 min read
September 29, 2023

Live from Workday Rising: Insights on using hiring technology to combat revenue loss.

I just had a chance to speak at Workday Rising about the generational evolution that is happening in talent acquisition right now — literally as I type this out. Here's the main takeaways from what I shared on stage.

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Recently, I was fortunate enough to speak at Workday Rising (in fact, it was yesterday) about a trend that’s kind of turned talent acquisition on its head. In the last five or so years, technology has gotten incredibly sophisticated — we’re basically talking about an entire generation of evolution happening in half a decade. 

We can do almost anything with the tap of a button and some help from AI. We can find out what the weather will be in four days by asking Siri. If Ryan Reynolds is wearing some cool sneakers in his latest commercial, I can snap a photo and use a tool to find and purchase the exact pair of kicks in seconds. 

But that same technology can be used in even more powerful ways — like to combat a hiring crisis and help save businesses millions of dollars in revenue.

Hiring demand is outpacing supply. 

Right now, there is a 2.4 million person gap between open roles and unemployed workers. You can derive a lot from that, but here’s the first thing that comes to my mind: 

More than ever, there are winners and losers in the labor market.

Which means, more than ever, you need to be doing everything you can to gain a competitive advantage in your talent acquisition process. 

When I worked as the head of global talent acquisition at a global quick-service restaurant company, we were making two million hires per year but still found that most of our restaurants were understaffed. Of course, I've found that many organization's that hire hourly workers — both big and small — face a similar challenge that's only accelerated in recent years. And when you actually go under the hood of understaffing and crunch the numbers, it's pretty shocking what it means for your bottom line. Generally speaking:

  • Being just one person understaffed leads to roughly $500 in revenue loss per day.
  • On average, it takes about 21 days to hire an hourly employee.

So if you're understaffed, in the time it takes to hire a new employee to fully staff the location, you could be losing quite a bit in revenue. And that doesn’t even take into account the possibility of employee turnover causing even more understaffing.

Point being: Unemployed workers have more power than employers right now. If you don’t have a competitive advantage to keep your business staffed, you are massively (and negatively) affecting your bottom line.

How to hire better. 

Thankfully, new innovations in the HR space can help businesses achieve that advantage. That doesn’t mean you should think small. You don’t want to just get 5% better than you were before — you should aim to leapfrog the competition entirely. 

Here's one example of that type of innovation: conversational AI. Global companies now use a 24/7 conversational assistant to drive their hiring process. These assistants automatically screen interested candidates, schedule qualified applicants for interviews, and help seamlessly onboard new hires all through a mobile text conversation. 

This is automation that was directly born from the generation skip in technology. It helps businesses hire better, faster — but still brings candidates moments of warmth with a human touch. This has resulted in a few (key) things for global frontline organizations:

  • Massive reductions in frontline time to hire, from a couple weeks to a couple days.
  • Some companies have automated 60-99% of their hiring process — bringing incredible cost and time savings.
  • Candidate drop-off has reduced significantly. Conversion rates throughout the process have jumped from as low as 3% to as high as 73%. What does that mean? Despite a tight labor market, companies have more candidates to choose from and are spending less money  on job advertising.

Again, if done correctly, we estimate this can translate to thousands of dollars per savings every hire. 

And these same tactics are resulting in real life savings for some leading organizations. We've seen global Workday clients like General Motors, Nestle, and Unilever use conversational AI to transform their hiring process, too — and save hundreds of thousands of dollars in the process. 

We believe the future of hiring is conversational. And as technology continues to evolve, we’re excited to evolve our hiring technology right alongside it.

Written by
Joshua Secrest
Vice President, Marketing & Client Advocacy
Joshua Secrest
Written by
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