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Experience Takes Center Stage in the New Economy and More HR Tech News

April 07, 2021 Digital Workplace
Mark Feffer
By Mark Feffer

Experience is the currency of the new economy. That applies to both customer experience and employee experience. 

With that in mind, ServiceNow and Qualtrics teamed up to combine ServiceNow’s digital workflows with Qualtrics’ experience-management technology on a single platform. With the resulting solutions, customers will be able to bring sentiment data from Qualtrics into ServiceNow's Customer and IT workflows.

“Empathy at mass scale is the business differentiator of the 21st century,” said ServiceNow President and CEO Bill McDermott, in one of the more interesting quotes we’ve seen to describe the modern market. Together, he said, his Santa Clara, Calif.-based company and Qualtrics “will help customers turn insights into action and redefine the experience economy.”

Zig Serafin, CEO of Provo, Utah-based Qualtrics, put it more prosaically. “Businesses succeed or fail based on the experiences they deliver and experience data has become the most valuable data in every organization,” he said.

The companies believe most organizations try to manage experience by relying on siloed systems. Their strategy to respond makes feedback “actionable,” in part by combining their capabilities. Their joint solutions will bring experience data from Qualtrics into ServiceNow Agent Workspaces to help users visualize performance, uncover drivers of service satisfaction and take action on those insights.

The solutions include:

  • Experience Management for IT, which combines Qualtrics EmployeeXM for IT with ServiceNow IT Service Management. Companies can connect operational and service delivery data with employee feedback on internal IT services on a single platform. As a result, IT will be able to measure the effectiveness of its in-house technologies, optimize service management processes and provide an improved digital experience.
  • Experience-Led Customer Service brings together Qualtrics CustomerXM with ServiceNow Customer Service Management. The combination allows agents and managers to automatically trigger workflows based on feedback, uncover drivers for customer satisfaction, improve cost-to-serve and increase content effectiveness.

The solutions will be available to joint customers during 2021’s second half, the companies said.

OutMatch Aims to 'Humanize' the Hiring Experience

OutMatch combined capabilities in assessments, video interviews and reference checking to deliver what the company calls a more “humanized” hiring experience. The Hiring Experience Stack will, in the words of CEO Greg Moran, allow candidates to “drive their own selection process.”  

The Hiring Experience Stack can be layered onto any company’s existing ATS to let candidates advance their application through the hiring platform’s workflow. Candidates can also showcase their soft skills using its recorded video interview tools.

From the employer’s point of view, the stack allows recruiters to create assessments that can capture necessary data without compromising the job seeker’s experience. It also automates reference checking and provides recruiters with a wider view of candidate data and a more precise measure of the hiring experience’s impact.

In November, OutMatch acquired Checkster with the intention of integrating its reference-checking and post-hire analysis functionality. Just a month earlier, the company purchased FurstPerson, an assessment firm specializing in pre-hire simulations. In September, it acquired LaunchPad, a recruitment automation platform.

Speaking to the website Dallas Innovates, OutMatch CTO Chris Gardner said the company will spend 2021 exploring how to combine data from its products to help customers better execute on talent acquisition plans.  

“By focusing in these areas we can improve our customers’ recruiting brands, accelerate their diversity and inclusion initiatives, humanize the hiring process for candidates by putting them in more control and help recruiters deal effectively with high volumes of applicants,” he said.

InfoMart Introduces ‘Digital Wallet’ for Work Credentials

Background screening firm InfoMart launched Career Wallet, an app that works much like a smartphone’s digital wallet does for retail purchases. With it, users can compile and share information such as employment history, education and skills training through their phone.

After users build their profile, Marietta, Ga.-based InfoMart verifies their credentials. Consumers then manage their own data, deciding what information to share and with whom during a job search. Employers can access credentials through the app or an API.

“Given the needed adoption of digital identities, the time of the digital skills wallet has come,” said InfoMart CEO Marco Piovesan. “Authenticated digital identities are crucial to establishing transparency, trust and seamless economic opportunities.”  

In addition, employers need to hire more quickly as talent acquisition’s dynamics are changed by the expansion of gig workers and hybrid work. “Noted industry analysts are emphasizing the importance of a design-oriented and employee-focused hiring experience that is simple, automated, and digital,” the company said.

Industry News

The great majority of employers, 85% of them, have a formal strategy governing their approach to HR technology or plan to implement one in the next year, according to a study by XpertHR. Almost 90% have deployed some form of technology to support HR, with the most common being an HR management/HRIS system, used by just more than 71% of organizations. At most companies, HR technology strategy was part of its wider HR strategy.

PlanSource launched its Nova software release, the first of 2021. Included updates focus on the company’s work to simplify the benefits experience and increase the use of automation, and includes the launch of PlanSourceIQ, a suite of AI add-ons designed hyper-personalize shopping experiences and increased HR efficiency. Two new products within the PlanSourceIQ family, DecisionIQ and DependentIQ, offer optimized decision support and eligibility verification solutions.

ResumeSieve launched its candidate evaluation platform, The Sieve, and said it was offering extended benefits to early adopters. The company said its tools use AI to automate the evaluation of resumes and provide quick insights that would otherwise take recruiters a significant amount of time and effort.

Learning platform provider Strivr and consulting firm DDI announced a partnership to help users sharpen their leadership skills. The partnership brings together DDI’s experience in leadership development with Strivr’s expertise in virtual reality-based learning. Through the partnership, companies will be able train their leaders in key skills through a combined immersive and peer discussion format. The first virtual reality scenarios the companies developed include resolving conflict and driving change.

401GO, which offers an automated 401(k) plan-setup process, announced multiple payroll integrations with companies including ADP, Paychex, iSolved, PayCor, Rippling and Kronos. 401GO plans to add another 8-12 integrations over the next three months. The company said its integrations allow for full automation of the day-to-day management of the 401(k) by reducing the time necessary for businesses need to invest in its plan to about an hour per year. 

New Funding Rounds

Staffbase and General Atlantic announced a strategic partnership, through which the investment firm will lead a $145 million financing round to help with international growth and strengthen the startup’s position in the employee engagement space. Staffbase has a global workforce of 450 employees in 11 locations, including London, New York, Vancouver, Amsterdam and Berlin. In March, the company merged with Bananatag, Canada’s leading provider of internal communications solutions.  

Crosschq closed $13 million in Series A funding in a round led by Tiger Global Management, with participation from returning investors, GGV Capital, Bessemer Venture Partners, Slack Fund, SAP, Intersect Capital and Rocketship.VC. The company will use the investment to enhance its analytics capabilities to track and measure quality of hire, and also to grow its artificial intelligence, go-to-market and development teams, expand partnerships and continue its efforts to encourage diversity in hiring practices.

Virtual recruiting service Celential.ai secured $9.5 million in Series A funding in a round led by GSR Ventures, with participation from Spider Capital, TSVC and select individual investors. As part of the round, Amer Akhtar, former Yahoo Small Business President and CEO of ADP China, joined the company as CEO.

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