Businessolver Blog

Vision 2023: Four Favorite Takeaways

Vision 2023: Four Favorite Takeaways
Posted on Thursday, May 25, 2023 by Rae Shanahan

2023 is all about recalibrating the HR workload with empathetic technology and product innovation. We covered it all at Vision this year. 

Vision, Businessolver’s annual HR industry conference, brought together hundreds of our HR peers, clients, partners, and industry experts to celebrate our technology innovations, share real-world success stories, and discuss the future of benefits.  

Empathy, AI, and personalization took center stage this year, reminding us once again that innovation must be in pursuit of customer delight. Here are a small handful of insights we loved from last week’s event. 

1. Sofia got her own virtual assistant with ChatGPT 

Businessolver has been in the benefits AI space since the inception of Sofia in 2017. We’ve continued to innovate with her AI in the six years since. At Vision we talked to Sony Sung-Chu, Sofia’s co-creator and Businessolver’s Head of Science and Innovation, about how our proprietary AI framework is getting a serious upgrade with ChatGPT. 

OpenAI’s HIPAA-compliant ChatGPT 3.5 service will help Sofia confirm, contextualize, and serve information. Just like a personal assistant, ChatGPT can streamline the technical lift and make Sofia’s job easier by synthesizing complex benefits questions and recognizing sentiment.  

As Sony reminded us at Vision 2023, benefits AI isn’t here to replace humans; rather, it’s today’s biggest tool in supporting our HR teams by driving more efficiencies throughout benefits programs. 

2. Empathy is critical to culture and business success.  

“Know that empathy is no longer a choice, it’s a mandate for corporations. When you practice empathy, you tell your employees we see you.”

–Darius Clay, Businessolver’s Head of Total Rewards

Businessolver’s eighth annual empathy report again underscored the importance of empathy and showed us that our HR partners are at their wits end. Only 68% of HR professionals view their CEOs as empathetic, a 23-point decrease from 2022. Similarly, 8 in 10 HR pros and employees are willing to leave their current job for a more empathetic employer (even if that means longer hours and less pay). 

Though the data shows a crisis of empathy, the lowest we’ve seen since we started studying it in 2017, the good news is this is a very teachable skill. If we want employees to bring their whole selves to work, including their bright ideas and drive for advancements, then we need to make it okay to be your whole self at work.  

3. Personalization solves for “X” in the benefits ROI equation  

Personalization is the new table stakes for the human experience, from benefits to shopping online. Equal to personalization is the desire for a diverse suite of benefits (one of the top ways an employer can show empathy) to meet the unique needs of each employee. However, benefits are historically confusing—our annual Benefits Insights study has steadily reported an average of 85% of employees don’t understand their benefits. Cue personalized benefits technology! 

Personalization is more than just custom communications; it’s a year-round effort to help employees connect the dots between their needs to the benefits available to them.  

“Personalization can keep people motivated and instill long term behavior change.”

–Kimberly Dunwoody, Ed.D., Businessolver’s VP of User Experience and Member Experience Product

Data helps us understand members on a deeper level, so personalization can direct people towards solutions that are right for them. When it comes to benefits, employees are likely to forget (or be overwhelmed by) their coverage and resources.  

Our data found that of all the people who leverage point solutions to address a specific need, not even 20% of them specifically asked for information about that point solution. The right technology delivers the right information at the right moment. 

4. Profit-focused organizations will face delayed consequences 

“Recession-focused firms will slow EX investments and pay the price.”

–Greg Pridgeon, Forrester Future of Work 

Employers that are hesitant to improve their employee experience, especially those striving to cut costs to drive the bottom line, will ultimately miss out on opportunities for talent and innovation. These slow-but-steady culture approaches are what will further retention, productivity, and profits in the long run. 

Broader conversations are happening around compensation, retaining talent, and the overall employee experience. The modern multigenerational workforce is looking for employers to incorporate your vision and values with your benefits platform, like offering PTO days for volunteering or paid maternity leave. 

Vision 2023 was one for the virtual scrapbooks! Keynotes, panels, case studies: We had over 15 live sessions and 1,600 registrants. Thank you to all the HR professionals who made the event so special by joining us in the chat, discussion boards, and Q&As to help us dive into empathy and discover what makes a Worthwhile Workplace. 

Continue the conversation with us on June 7. Jon Shanahan, Businessolver CEO and President, will moderate a thought-provoking panel to put the “human” back in human resources.