Burger King uses AI and WhatsApp to communicate with its employees

Burger King uses AI and WhatsApp to communicate with its employees

The use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) has been gaining not only the service to the external public, but also the internal, that is, the employees of a company. And one of them is Burger King, which has been using technology to make its employees able to adapt to the new ways of work implemented by the organization in the face of the new coronavirus pandemic scenario.

The fast food chain has been using a cognitive assistant that bears the name of Technology Oriented People or, simply, TOP. Aiming to facilitate the solution of doubts with its professionals, the platform had its AI improved from Watson Assistant, an artificial intelligence solution from IBM and which is hosted on its public cloud.

Burger King store: communication with employees is done via WhatsApp

Before the project, conceived and implemented by IBM Services, communication between Burger King's management and part of its 18,000 employees was centralized and carried out by store leaders. After the adoption of the virtual assistant, connected to WhatsApp, the main information about the People & Management processes became quickly available to each employee on their mobile devices. All interaction is done with questions and answers – which, according to the company, go beyond automated interaction.

Covid-19 content

With support from TOP, Burger King claims to have effectively managed to rely on a tool in which it can communicate daily with its employees. The fast food chain says that the platform also contributed to quickly disseminating the company's position in relation to various topics, especially during the pandemic period.

For this, in a joint effort with support from IBM, updates were quickly made to the tool to make the official Ministry of Health content on the coronavirus available to workers for consultation. The tool also helped the People & Management area to go further, enabling content available in more than 30 responses to doubts related to Covid-19, such as guidance on PPE's (personal protective equipment), risk groups, driving to use spaces , among others.

Watson: IBM's AI platform also starts to act in the HRs of companies (Photo: IBM – disclosure)

Among the most frequent consultations with TOP are questions about topics related to salary, Compensation & Benefits and other issues related to Covid-19. In the midst of the current scenario, the virtual assistant experienced an increase in accesses, reaching more than 1,100 questions, on average, sent per day during the month of April, with a total of more than 33,100 responses in the period.

TOP recognizes each employee by their telephone number and CPF registered in the company's system, ensuring confidentiality. From there, the assistant helps employees answer questions about vacations, earnings reports, among other 60 Human Resources matters. Today, this virtual assistant has become a very effective and agile tool in assisting company employees, accounting for 50% of calls. A hybrid and multicloud cloud architecture, accessing the IBM Cloud in the BK IT environment, ensures the rapid exchange of information to bring responses in real time.

For Marcia Baena, Vice President of People & Management at Burger King do Brasil, TOP's main objective is to be close to our employee and facilitate access to information. "Technology has a key role in enabling this connection, especially at a time when reliability, security and speed are so critical," said the executive. "We know that the moment demands communication and an agile flow of information and if technology allows us this close contact with the people who are part of the team, we will make the most of it".

"Burger King is an example in this sense, having combined its journey of digital transformation with its people management strategy to be more connected and respond more efficiently to the team's needs", added Marco Kalil, Vice President of IBM Services from IBM Brazil.