Troy Campano helps develop digital workplace technologies to modernize and simplify the day-to-day experience for insurance company Liberty Mutual’s more than 50,000 employees.
"Starting in 2013, we began a journey to build an Intelligent Workplace platform and Digital Assistant for our 50,000+ employees that we call Workgrid," Campano said. Workgrid connects into all the tools that employees use and surfaces contextual information, notifications, and transactions from various systems in a single place for employees.
Campano currently occupies dual roles — he is senior enterprise architect for Liberty Mutual’s digital workplace and he’s also head of product for the insurance company’s wholly owned Workgrid Software. In 2017, Liberty Mutual established Workgrid Software as a way to bring its internal technology solutions to market. "The problems Liberty Mutual faces around employee experience are not unique to an enterprise of our size, certainly other organizations face similar challenges," he said.
A Passion for User Experience
The goal of Liberty Mutual’s digital workplace endeavors is to "reduce the productivity burdens many employees have logging in to multiple applications and systems to get their work done," Campano said.
He joined Liberty Mutual in 2000 and, over the years, he has worked on many employee-facing systems and technologies — such as databases, application servers, intranets and core business platforms — for departments including HR, IT, procurement, real estate and security.
"User experience has always been something I’ve been highly passionate about," Campano said. "So seeing both sides of how these technology platforms can improve or negatively impact the ability of employees to get their work done and how these platforms power business units have given me a great perspective into how the decisions we make on these platforms impact both the employee and the backend service provider."
He also leverages a background in design, having taken a number of courses in graphic design and print design while studying computer science at college. "I think that’s all given me a unique perspective on the technology projects I’ve worked on over the years and the impact on people that use them," he said.
Campano will be speaking at CMSWire and Digital Workplace Group’s Digital Workplace Experience taking place June 18 to 20 at the Radisson Blu Aqua hotel in Chicago. He will give a session on June 20 titled “Liberty Mutual’s Journey to an Intelligent Workplace.”
We spoke with Campano about his thoughts on employee experience, digital assistants and chatbots. He also shared some best practices advice on how Liberty Mutual has successfully rolled out its digital assistant.
Expanding the Capabilities of Digital Assistants and Chatbots
CMSWire: What is the next shift in the digital workplace? What excites you about emerging technologies like AI and what it may enable in the workplace?
Campano: I think the next major shift in the digital workplace is an increased focus on employee experience. From a technology perspective, I’m most excited about the possibilities of AI and automation and the positive impact it will have on employee experience. Today, this is what I spend most of my time on — how we improve employee experience using these modern technologies.
Before we implemented our digital assistant technology, we found employees were missing important messages, notifications and approvals. Furthermore, employees were spending valuable time trying to navigate corporate systems to complete simple tasks not related to the primary focus of their work.
The way I like to think about it is, we hire employees for a certain job, so any way we can reduce their time spent on administrative tasks outside their core work and enable them to focus on their work is a boost in productivity. So, if we can save employees just 10 minutes a day, that translates to millions of dollars in savings for a company of our size.
CMSWire: How has Liberty Mutual evolved its digital workplace over the years?
Campano: I think the biggest advancement to our digital workplace over the years has been the introduction of a digital assistant to the workplace. It really was the first step we took from moving from a traditional content-based intranet towards our intranet becoming an integrated front door to our digital workplace.
We started with the digital assistant as a toolbar on the side of our intranet, and over time, we added contextual notifications, transactions, approvals, communications, microapps and a chatbot. We ended up with a single simplified experience for employees that reduces their need to login to multiple systems for simple transactions or to find information.
CMSWire: How do you think organizations will use chatbots?
Campano: I see chatbot technology as the future of search. At Liberty Mutual, we’ve been experimenting with chatbot technology and have integrated a chatbot into our existing digital assistant technology to help employees find information, submit requests and automate tasks.
We’re also in the early stages of integrating Google Assistant and Amazon’s Alexa into our digital assistant, so employees can leverage voice queries to access information and even complete tasks from the convenience of their home using the same device they leverage in their personal lives for certain work-related information and transactions.
CMSWire: What are your upcoming plans for Liberty Mutual’s digital workplace?
Campano: For us, the next phase of our journey is really focused on expanding the capability of our digital assistant. One of the areas that is significantly valuable is being able to reduce call volume to our IT Help Desk and HR Service Center by using a chatbot.
We’re putting a lot of energy into finding ways to automate functionality for employees through the chatbot so they don’t need to call a help desk for minor issues that take tech time away from larger problems.
A perfect example is when employees lock themselves out of their Liberty Mutual managed personal or corporate smartphone. With the chatbot, employees can simply request to unlock the phone instead of calling the IT Help Desk, thus reducing call volume for a minor issue, that allows us to provide 24/7 support to employees and free up the tech team to spend more time on other queries.
CMSWire: What advice do you have for other organizations who are keen to adopt digital assistants in terms of best practices?
Campano: Starting small with incremental deliveries and capturing feedback from employees, every step of the way, was crucial in our digital assistant rollout. We originally started by aggregating approval requests across many of our systems into a single place for managers and then expanded functionally incrementally from there.
Our digital assistant promotes the ability to capture feedback from its user, so we received a ton of feedback from managers and employees each day that allowed us to continue to refine and perfect the technology.
When we did sentiment analysis on the feedback, the number one word used to describe the digital assistant was the word ‘love’ (as in “I love this!”), so we knew listening to employees and changing the product to address their needs was the most important step in the process.
CMSWire: What are your thoughts on how human staff can work with chatbots?
Campano: I’m excited by the possibilities of humans and chatbots/AI working together. Instead of users having to adapt to technology, users will benefit from a computer’s ability to learn and leverage a user’s information to allow users to simply tell computers what they need and even have tasks completed on their behalf.
Think of the example I mentioned before of accidentally locking myself out of my smartphone. I might have to complete multiple steps including calling a help desk, or navigating to an IT Service Management portal, searching for a Smartphone Unlock Form, filling out some information, clicking ‘Submit,’ and having someone or a workflow process unlock my phone.
It’s much simpler to use the same chatbot or virtual assistant I use for everything else and say, “Unlock my iPhone.” The chatbot instantly unlocks my iPhone because it knows my devices, understands what I’ve said, and can instantly complete the task allowing me, the employee, to get on with my day.
CMSWire: Which books would you recommend as useful in discussing the intelligent workplace and the future of work?
Campano: Paul Miller’s books on the digital workplace are obviously great books to start with to get a firm understanding of what a digital workplace is, but given the intelligent workplace is a fairly new and emerging concept itself, it’s hard to find a lot of books on it yet.
I am currently reading “Human + Machine: Reimagining Work in the Age of AI” by Paul R. Daugherty and H. James Wilson. The book does a great job at describing the future of work with AI and how we’re on the verge of a third wave of business transformation because of the technology advancements that have been made over the years.
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