How can AI drive your employees’ productivity? Why not just ask them!

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The path of destruction

When you think of Artificial Intelligence, is your first impulse to think of the classic movie “The Terminator”, specifically the cyborg character played by Arnold Schwarzenegger which leaves death and destruction in its wake? Or, maybe you don’t believe that AI will lead to the end of mankind, but that it has the possibility to decimate traditional work, leading to the destruction of millions of jobs and a massive increase in unemployment globally. Perhaps, on the other hand, you’re an optimist.  One who believes in the possibility that Artificial Intelligence can improve working conditions for employees; eliminating boring and repetitive work, increasing safety, and creating higher levels of employee productivity.  One who sees the role of AI in creating the foundation for better business results and higher job satisfaction.

If you’re in the latter camp, then this story is for you.

“Artificial Intelligence (AI) encompasses multiple technologies that enable computers to sense, comprehend, act, and learn. AI includes techniques such as machine learning, natural language processing, knowledge representation, computational intelligence, among others”

Accenture, “Built to Scale Report”, 2019

The backstory

Earlier this year, jovoto was approached by a large innovation consultancy and a global automotive supplier with an interest in understanding how Artificial Intelligence could improve their business. While the automotive supplier (hereafter referred to as “the company”) already has a positive outlook on the possibilities of Artificial Intelligence to improve its business, they did not have a clear sense of where the benefits would come from. To help find answers, they decided to turn to their own employees to help guide them in their journey towards the future. 

This company determined that by proactively tapping into their employees’ intimate knowledge and deep understanding of their own jobs, they were likely to identify the most promising areas of opportunities to use AI. In other words, talking to their own employees would place the company in the best position to assess where AI could have the most impact. 

The first step, however, was to get their employees up to speed on AI and what it can achieve today.

Exploring learning concepts

That’s where jovoto got involved. The company approached jovoto with the task to develop a new learning approach which could help educate all of its employees about Artificial Intelligence. With over 200,000 employees globally, from engineers and sales to manufacturing staff, this company understood that to capture the best ideas for AI, they would need to reach a broad target audience with an effective educational approach.   

To come up with the best path for educating its workforce, the company wanted to quickly identify a broad number of innovative concepts. This type of “explore project” is a perfect fit for jovoto’s rapid ideation process. To develop the initial learning concepts, a top performing team of 18 jovoto creatives and subject matter experts from 8 countries were chosen to work in a fast-paced sprint. In total, fourteen in-depth concepts were created, iterated and finalized by the team on the jovoto platform in just 2 short weeks.  

This project was run under NDA, which means that we, unfortunately, cannot disclose the details of the submissions, but what we can say is that out of the fourteen concepts submitted, three were shortlisted for further development by the client. The final approach the client selected was a concept developed by one of jovoto’s creatives in a separate private jovoto digital workspace, and focused on a fun “learning via play” approach aimed at fully engaging employees.   

What’s next?

Armed with the right idea, the company (and our partner on the project, a global innovation strategy consultancy), now have the best possibility to educate, engage, and ultimately gain the right knowledge from their employees on how to pursue AI. If AI is as critical to our futures as we are being told, identifying the right strategy to optimize business is essential. A recent Accenture report derived from 1500 interviews with C-suite executives across 16 industries emphasizes this point: “three out of four C-suite executives believe that if they don’t scale artificial intelligence (AI) in the next five years, they risk going out of business entirely.”

If the terminator, aka Arnold Schwarzenegger isn’t destroying jobs, then he’ll probably target the companies that don’t address AI on a strategic level. According to the Accenture report, identifying the right cross-departmental AI strategy is the most crucial part to get right. And if done right, you can expect great returns. Companies that opt for a strategic approach to scale AI, report 3X the return on investment than the companies that pursue “siloed proof of concepts” (which are mostly IT-driven, independent initiatives that are missing out on the direction and operational buy-in from the C-suite) (more on that here). 

Co-creating your AI future

By keeping your employees at the center of your digital transformation and building cross-functional AI teams throughout your organization, you will improve the performance of your AI strategy AND ensure that your entire organization is engaged and bought-in to the process. As a result, you can expect your whole company to experience faster cultural and behavioral changes.

Are you interested in learning more about our accelerated and targeted approach to open innovation and how we work with strategic partners (from large global consultancies to boutique strategy consultants) on the topic of AI? Or perhaps you’d like to hear more about how we work directly with companies like yours to solve AI, product, marketing, service and other challenges. If so, get in touch!

About jovoto

Hey, we’re jovoto! We’ve solved hundreds of innovation challenges since 2007, making us the leading open innovation and co-creation platform today. Our open innovation and co-creation platform acts as a virtual studio where we curate creative teams – assembled from our global network – to solve product design, service innovation, marketing challenges, and HR challenges.

Learn more about how collaboration, diversity, and an accelerated approach leads to better problem-solving by visiting us at

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