Wide adoption of messaging applications and shifting employee demographics are compelling organizations to engage their workforce using emerging technologies. With 24/7 availability, quicker turnaround, reduced margin of human errors, chatbots are quickly emerging as a preferred medium of interaction for organizations and end-users alike.
Chatbot (a.k.a. Chat Robot) is a software that simulates a human conversation using an online chat user interface through messaging applications, websites, and mobile applications.
PeopleSoft’s approach is to tap into this emerging technology by building chatbots that leverage PeopleSoft’s extensive application logic, data, and Oracle’s chatbot platform known as Oracle Digital Assistant (ODA)
In order to deploy PeopleSoft chatbots, you need to be on PeopleTools release 8.57.07 or higher and license the Oracle Digital Assistant (ODA) cloud-based application (more details here).
Chatbot for Absence
In the HCM PI31 release, PeopleSoft’s first chatbot – known as Absence Assistant - was delivered to perform employee transactions like request time off, answer common questions such as what is my current leave balance? or what is the status of my previously requested absences? The Absence Assistant may also be used to fetch accrued balances for a future date or cancel absences. All transactions or lookups performed through the Absence Assistant complies with the policies you set forth in the Absence Management application.
Employees can access the chatbot by selecting Absence Assistant tile on their homepage and interact with the Absence Assistant using direct questions such as What is my vacation balance? or Is my Sick leave approved? or I want to take leave tomorrow. Absence Assistant works as a step-by-step guide prompting users to provide required information at each step to achieve a desired outcome as you will see in the screenshots and video feature below.
Absence Assistant - Phone view
Absence Assistant - Desktop view
Watch this Video Feature Overview (VFO) to get a quick overview of the working of Absence Assistant
For more details and steps to implement Absence Assistant, go to PeopleSoft Online Help
PeopleSoft Chatbot Integration Framework (CIF)
The PeopleSoft Chatbot Integration Framework is intended to make it much easier to build and deploy ODA-based chatbots in PeopleSoft. It connects the ODA platform with PeopleSoft (for Absence as well as future PeopleSoft chatbots) and was delivered in HCM PI31 and FSCM PI 32. This framework is a set of tools and content that enables the chatbot user interface, authentication, and provides structure to build RESTful services and a template that can be used to build new chatbots.
Check the PeopleTools - PeopleSoft Chatbots blog and Chatbot Integration Framework (CIF) VFO to learn more. Integration framework details and deployment guidelines are available in PeopleSoft Online Help
PeopleSoft provides supplemental documentation to support customers to uptake and maintain chatbots. PeopleSoft Chatbot FAQ document provides answers to most commonly asked PeopleSoft chatbot related questions like supported features, security and bot design best practices. PeopleSoft Chatbot Integration Framework Red Paper is published for technical users to understand the architecture and components used to build the framework.
While you refer to the documentation listed above at different stages of chatbot life cycle, Chatbot Key Concepts page page is your starting point for PeopleSoft chatbots. It's a centralized repository for all PeopleSoft chatbot updates and includes all the documentation references above.
Currently, PeopleSoft aims to build individual chatbots catering to a specific functions such as Recruiting, Payroll or Employee Directory look up. See PeopleSoft Planned Features and Enhancements for the planned roadmap for PeopleSoft chatbots.