Using Behavioral Science and AI to Improve Human Productivity

“The yield from the human resource really determines the organization’s performance” — Peter Drucker

Traditional thinking to improve enterprise productivity has been to rationalize processes and add a dash of technology; in short, take the human out of the mix. Unsurprisingly, there’s a rush to develop and deploy technologies that replace the human altogether.

But what if technology could be used to augment human capabilities in an enterprise setting?

Advances in Behavioural Economics led by Nobel Laureates like Daniel Kahneman and Richard Thaler, have shown that behavioral science can help understand the context in which people make decisions, thereby tailoring the mechanics of motivation for people.

Add a layer of technology to this, and you can get personalised “nudges” to motivate, coach and guide individuals to better performance. While Nudge Management is a revolutionary theoretical concept, it is not enough to bring a radical shift in productivity challenges. It needs an effective vehicle of delivery.

This problem can be solved by adding Artificial Intelligence to the mix.

A platform or product that effectively brings together the knowledge of behavioral economics, nudge management and AI, can smoothly predict and personalize performance at scale.

The best managers motivate, guide and encourage their people to help enhance performance. Mia, Worxogo’s mobile-enabled application uses principles of behavioral science, augmented by AI, to mimic the capabilities of managers.

Mia uses analytics to guide the user on the key tasks and activities for the day. It sends “nudges” through the application, and ”learns” about the user’s personality to figure out which nudges are most effective.

The application has four layers :

1. Data Integration

Performance data for every user is taken from the various enterprise systems that are already active — eg., CRM, ERP, DMS etc. The user does not enter any data into this application.

2. Predictive Analytics

The output of predictive analytics is to determine the important activities and actions that the user must do on that day, to increase his performance. The algorithm considers 9 variables to arrive at the “best actions of the day” for each user, including the performance gap, relative importance of the KPIs, monthly skew, past performance band, etc.

3. Nudge Engine

The “best actions” are communicated through nudges. Nudges could be text or visual notifications. The nudges are designed to trigger behavior change based on the user’s personality profile.

4. Learning Engine

The response to the nudges (in terms of engagement and result) help Mia understand the user better, and fine-tune the effectiveness.

Worxogo’s suite of applications covers sales, supply chain, and innovation management.

Over 30 companies have benefited from increased productivity, ranging from a 15–25% increase in just six months.

Our customers are from a diverse range of sectors including Financial Services, Retail Manufacturing, and Services.

There is a growing acknowledgement that human behavior is the next frontier for enterprises to manage successfully. With the emergence of AI and Cognitive Science, new vistas open for enterprises to create new avenues for performance.

This article is a guest post by Ramesh Srinivas, Co-founder and CEO, Worxogo, a company using behaviour design, neuroscience & predictive analytics to enhance employee performance.

An early-stage VC fund investing in technology product companies in India.

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