Humaxa: How our AI Assistant “Max” can Offer Instant Help to People Leaders

Humaxa is a 2022 WorkplaceTech Accelerator (WTA) cohort member. The WTA is a premier program for all things future of work and is powered by SHRMLabs (SHRM’s innovation lab and venture capital arm). Our inaugural 8-week virtual accelerator program is currently underway and is designed to scale up early-stage, growth-driven startups dedicated to elevating HR and solving today’s most pressing workplace challenges. We asked each of the six cohort members to share their story in their own words. 

Human Resources and People Leaders are always being asked to do more with less. As people become more and more comfortable with the idea of talking to a digital assistant at work, HR and People Leaders can spend less time on things they can't do or don't want to do. It's impossible for an HR or People Leader to go around and speak to each employee anonymously about what they need to engage and perform on the job while offering instant help, 24/7/365. An AI Assistant like "Max" can do that, however, allowing HR and People Leaders to focus on high-value, strategic conversations.  

Research shows that it is difficult to get employees to open up and share their struggles when it comes to awkward workplace topics. Most of the time, the issue never gets to the point of a lawsuit - good employees simply walk out the door. Our goal is to solve expensive workplace issues proactively and in a way that benefits both the employee and the employer - everywhere, all around the world.  

Humaxa helps organizations predict and prevent expensive workforce issues through an anonymous Digital Assistant —affectionately named "Max"—that chats with employees and connects them to immediate solutions like group discussions, mentoring, feedback, wellness exercises, collaborative goal setting, leadership basics training, or any resource an organization already has in place. "Max" alerts the admin when data starts to go the wrong direction or when an employee feels strongly negative. "Max" can then act as a courier to allow the employee and the employer to have a live, anonymous conversation and get help from a real person. "Max" integrates directly with Slack, Microsoft Teams, or any messaging app that makes its integration points public.  

"Max" sits on top of Slack or Microsoft Teams and is highly customizable. "Max" has a set of 25 standard topics it knows to ask about and hundreds of workplace discussion topics/actions it can take, but it's easy to add or subtract custom topics from the list. It can also serve up any existing solution an organization already has in place, driving employee to make better use of resources already in place. For example, an employee could be experiencing workplace stress. The employee can talk about it anonymously with "Max", Max will try to figure out the root cause of the stress and can then offer to take the employee to the organization's Health & Wellness solution, remind the employee of how to use the EAP, or offer to walk the employee through a de-stressing activity itself. Deep integrations with HRISs, Performance Management Systems, Learning Management Systems, Talent Management Systems, and others HR Tech Stack systems are all possible, based on what "Max" predicts will help the employee.  

Many things at work are easy to talk about. Some topics, however, are tricky to talk about: Your manager's communication style, struggles with job performance, workplace stress, or feelings that you're not being treated fairly. This is where "Max" steps in. Employees can chat with "Max" anonymously and get immediate help, 24/7/365. Humaxa was based partly on research into the likelihood of people being willing to chat with an anonymous assistant when struggling with awkward topics: 

  1. PTSD Study out of USC/Institute for Creative Technologies   

  1. Acceptance of AI-led Chatbot Services in Healthcare - Digital Health - UK    

Our clients see on average US $48,000/year cost savings per 100 employees through reduced turnover & absenteeism. "Max" also automates the process of matching employee sentiment to immediate solutions, reducing time spent directing employees to solutions when they need help. 

As it turns out, being able to talk to a "non-human", get immediate help, and predicting issues with Conversational AI data works on behalf of both employers AND employees.  

Additional Ways to Learn More about Humaxa and SHRMLabs’ WorkplaceTech Accelerator: 

The SHRM Blog does not accept solicitation for guest posts.

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