SAP, Microsoft Collaborate on Joint Generative AI Offerings to Address Talent Gap

The integrations are designed to improve how organizations attract, retain and skill their people.

Sap Employees 2022 001 (1)
SAP SE / Norbert Steinhauser

SAP SE and Microsoft announced their use of the latest in enterprise-ready generative AI innovation to help solve customers’ most fundamental business challenges.

The companies will collaborate on integrating SAP SuccessFactors solutions with Microsoft 365 Copilot and Copilot in Viva Learning, as well as Microsoft’s Azure OpenAI Service to access powerful language models that analyze and generate natural language.

The integrations will enable new experiences designed to improve how organizations attract, retain and skill their people.

“We have an incredible opportunity to deliver next-generation AI that will unlock productivity growth for every individual, organization and industry, including the human resources function,” said Satya Nadella, Chairman and CEO, Microsoft. “We’re building on our long-standing cloud partnership with SAP and bringing together the power of Microsoft 365 Copilot with SAP SuccessFactors solutions to transform how organizations attract and develop their most important resource – their people.”

Addressing the Skills Challenge — One of Today’s Toughest Business Problems

Across the world today, companies are facing a growing challenge as they manage the gap between the skills they have in their work force and the skills they need for the future. Closing that gap means optimizing how they recruit and hire new talent in today’s competitive market, as well as how they deliver learning and development programs to help employees grow.

Today, these functions require a lot of manual, repetitive work and often end up missing the mark. Companies are constantly reinventing the wheel each time they create a new position, updating requirements based on the rapidly changing skills landscape, ensuring job descriptions are market competitive and developing interview questions to unearth the potential in every candidate.

Another concern is closing the gap between each employee’s unique career aspirations and the cross-skilling and upskilling opportunities offered by the organization.

With today’s announcement, Microsoft and SAP will collaborate to enable SAP customers to benefit from the power of generative AI to attract the most qualified candidates for key roles and generate personalized insights to keep them engaged once on board.

Streamlining Recruitment and Employee Learning

Through this collaboration and SAP’s use of the Azure OpenAI Service API, SAP and Microsoft will work together on new experiences that streamline recruiting and employee development processes, including:

  • Recruiting: SAP will leverage the Azure OpenAI Service API and data from SAP SuccessFactors solutions to create compelling and highly targeted job descriptions. Through an integration between the SAP SuccessFactors Recruiting solution and Microsoft 365, people leaders will be able to fine-tune job descriptions using Copilot in Microsoft Word with additional content and checks to detect bias. The final job descriptions will then be published in SAP SuccessFactors solutions to complete the workflow, without people leaders having to leave their normal flow of work. SAP will also leverage the Azure OpenAI Service API to offer prompts to interviewers within Microsoft Teams with suggested questions based on a candidate’s resume, the job description and similar jobs.
  • Learning: Integration between SAP SuccessFactors solutions and Microsoft Viva Learning will enable employees to use Copilot in Viva Learning to conduct natural language queries to create personalized learning recommendations based on data and learning courses in SAP SuccessFactors solutions that align with the employee’s career and development goals. As learning is completed, the SAP SuccessFactors portfolio will update automatically, providing companies an up-to-date view of the skills landscape in their organization. This enhancement builds on an already robust integration with content, assignment, permissions and SSO sync, available now, and an automated admin setup Experience available to customers later this year.

A Rich Data Foundation for Effective AI

Given SAP’s worldwide footprint, the company’s immense data estate provides the potential to significantly enhance the capabilities of large-language models across many industries. As such, today’s announcement is also a model for how AI tools can work to enhance the power of data and systems in any field.

A Responsible Approach to AI

SAP AI abides by the highest industry standards on responsible AI. It is transparent, so organizations can understand how it makes inferences and builds recommendations. It respects the privacy of sensitive data and helps avoid bias.

As one of the first companies to define guiding principles for using AI in its software, SAP works with leading ethics experts as part of its AI ethics advisory panel to explore the implications of deploying AI in the enterprise.

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