Business News Thoughts

The potential of hyper-personalisation in HR

Johannesburg, May 2023 – One of the biggest challenges facing HR professionals today is attracting and retaining top talent.

Enter hyper-personalisation. A strategy that involves tailoring HR processes and strategies to fit each employee’s individual needs, preferences, and characteristics.

“While many HR professionals understand how integral this personal touch is in creating a positive employee experience, gathering the data needed to deliver hyper-personalisation is where the difficulty lies. Unfortunately, many companies are simply ill-equipped when it comes to collecting this data,” says Hey Jude’s Cleonè Bakker.

The Hey Jude App is perfectly positioned to help businesses overcome these obstacles. How? By using data-driven insights and clever technology to help HR professionals gain a better understanding of what makes employees tick.

The app’s data can help identify what motivates employees. This insight allows leaders to make informed decisions about how to incentivise and inspire their workers. Ultimately, enabling them to discard the one-size-fits-all approach that once epitomised HR.

By embracing hyper-personalisation and focusing on individualised approaches to the work environment, HR professionals can create a unique employee value proposition that sets their company apart from competitors.

What’s more, the Hey Jude App provides employees with a digital assistant that can help with day-to-day tasks and personal errands. This helps reduce stress among employees and increases engagement. It also makes employees feel valued, which is integral to improving retention and boosting employee productivity and satisfaction.

“Ultimately hyper-personalisation is quite honestly, the only way forward for HR professionals who are striving to meet the expectations of today’s modern workforce. And Hey Jude is the best tool to help companies get there,” concludes Bakker.

For more information visit

Business News Thoughts

Hey Jude launches game-changing platform to drive digital transformation

The innovative platform from Hey Jude is set to revolutionise customer interactions and optimise business operations

Johannesburg, May 2023 – Artificial Intelligence is disrupting all sectors of the economy – from healthcare to insurance to advertising. While this technology excels at automating tasks, solving complex problems, and even generating written content, it falls short in establishing context, making meaningful connections and creative problem-solving. What’s needed is a focus on beneficial intelligence as opposed to Artificial Intelligence (AI).

Hey Jude, an app that helps people get things done, proudly unveils its latest achievement – an advanced platform that brings together the best of AI technology, leveraging ChatGPT, Zendesk and Google integrations, with the human touch, to supercharge user experiences and maximise business efficiencies.

“Digital technology has always played an instrumental role in our offering, and this is why we’ve embraced AI technology. We recognise its immense potential to augment our business operations,” says Natalie Davies, Chief of Operational Efficiency and Strategy Execution at Hey Jude.

“We use AI to quickly, efficiently and consistently handle tasks and when it comes to completing the last mile of a task, we know that nothing and no one does it better than a human agent. We firmly believe that our customised platform represents the future of customer management, and we’re excited to offer this unique, ready-to-go solution to our valued customers,” says Davies.

The platform seamlessly integrates AI-powered tools, such as customer context, fulfilment playbooks, sentiment analysis and automated classification, with human moderation to ensure that every customer interaction receives meticulous care and attention to detail.

Furthermore, the platform offers unparalleled omnichannel capabilities, enabling businesses to engage customers across diverse channels, including social media, email, and WhatsApp. It has a host of customised features and functionalities, such as in-app payments, automated task reminders, and seamless delivery integration. The platform streamlines business operations and, as a result, eliminates pain points for customers and employees.

The platform’s custom supplier tool equips businesses with the ability to showcase preferred suppliers, conduct Google searches based on factors like price, historical usage, and satisfaction ratings, and track supplier responses through automated task nudges. This feature optimises supplier management, ensuring prompt responses and adherence to service level agreements.

In addressing data privacy and security concerns, the Hey Jude platform incorporates data anonymisation and text redaction, safeguarding sensitive user information, and establishing a secure internal communication system for agents, maintaining data privacy without compromise.

“By embracing the power of digital transformation, Hey Jude provides businesses with a unified view of the customer, to effortlessly accelerate and elevate overall customer engagement,” says Davies.

Business News Thoughts

How empathy is shaping a more effective future workforce

Johannesburg, June 2023 – Empathy is important in our personal lives, but hasn’t prominently featured in our professional ones. Long considered a soft skill, empathy matters now more than ever and it’s shaping the workforce of the future. It’s also good for business.

As humans, we should at the very least expect those around and close to us to care about our wellbeing. And it should be no different in the office environment. Recognising and understanding a colleague’s feelings, thoughts and experiences creates a sense of belonging, shows respect and reinforces the certainty that you matter.

But, empathy doesn’t create itself, so what does this key element of emotional intelligence mean for today’s leaders and how does it fit into the competitive business landscape?

Leaders and senior managers in modern business environments need to be more than just authority figures. In the words of inspirational speaker Simon Sinek, “Leadership is not about being in charge. Leadership is about taking care of those in your charge.” An empathetic leader will recognise the value of employees and create higher-performing teams, which provides the opportunity for their company to thrive.

Empathy is a must-have business strategy that has numerous benefits:

Encouraging collaboration and engagement

When team members feel comfortable voicing their opinions and contributing different points of view, it promotes constructive discussions. With empathy, people feel more valued and will want to do more for their colleagues. This strengthens teamwork and ultimately aids in more engagement and healthier collaboration.

Promoting creativity and innovation

Providing a safe space where people’s perspectives are respected and where you feel comfortable taking sensible risks without fear of consequences, is a catalyst for new ideas and thinking. By reducing fear barriers and empowering individuals, you create an environment that encourages creative and innovative thinking. In addition, empathy aligns you with your customers’ wants and needs. By seeing things from their perspective, you deliver better products and services.

Improving morale and productivity

With a culture of empathy there’s a common and genuine understanding of emotions and motivations. Employees are also actively engaged, which increases collaboration and decreases conflict. These team members build stronger connections and are inspired to perform better – all of which builds a solid work culture and fuels productivity.

Driving business growth

Relationships built on mutual trust, where colleagues respect co-worker’s roles, responsibilities and wellbeing, will bring the best out of teams. Empathy drives motivation. So, where everyone feels like one team – that is inclusive, supported, heard and valued – morale and loyalty increase, which boosts productivity, earnings and growth.

Companies will often say that they care about their people or that their people are their greatest asset, but how much of this is company verbiage and how much is in their DNA? The world has changed and empathy has become a strategic business imperative, while the ability to see the world from the perspective of others is a necessary skill for effective leadership.

Under the guidance of empathetic leaders, care is authentic, interest is sincere and understanding is heartfelt. Empathy is the future of an effective workforce and it just makes good business sense.

Business News Thoughts

The post-pandemic property market is digital

What a difference a year can make. The coronavirus had experts predicting that house prices would fall, but, the South African real estate market has in fact experienced a boom since the hard lockdown was lifted in June 2020.

The pandemic has also accelerated certain changes in the industry which have emerged in the past few years, including remote working, the growth of ecommerce and semigration. The economic impact of the pandemic has also highlighted affordability, with buyers, sellers, landlords and tenants now looking for more value in the services being provided to them. These shifts have altered traditional buying, selling and renting habits and are set to have a significant impact on how real estate businesses are run.

In an evolving market, the performance of real estate agents and their ability to assist their clients will be a key focus. This will require many to rethink their traditional processes in favour of a more tech-enabled and customer-centric business model.

“Our industry is highly competitive and to survive you have to find different ways of operating, like adapting to digital,” says Chas Everitt International Director Barry Davies. “There’s also always pressure to offer something unique to sellers to secure a sole mandate, or to buyers to secure the relationship after a sale and any future repeat business. That’s why you want to provide every buyer, seller, landlord and tenant with a positive and memorable real estate experience, and enable your agents to remain at the centre of each real estate transaction.”

To differentiate themselves in the market and keep their agents at the top of their game, real estate businesses should be looking at digital tools designed for the property industry.

“We understand just how tough this industry can be and that businesses are looking for something that sets them apart and helps their agents to be more focused, efficient and ultimately successful,” says Adrian Zanetti, director at Hey Jude.

Hey Jude Property Industry Enhancer is a customisable mobile solution that combines technology and human intuition, to deliver a memorable user experience tailored to a brand. At its core, Hey Jude helps its members by completing personal errands on their behalf, and giving them back their time.

“The biggest asset in a real estate business is its agents and their most precious commodity is time. Free up their day by removing mundane, personal tasks, and agents can focus their energy on serving more clients, securing more mandates and closing more deals,” explains Zanetti.

As the industry moves from a transactional to a more relationship-focused model, the adoption of digital solutions enables real estate businesses to better support their agents and ultimately provide their clients with a more rewarding experience.

“Hey Jude lays the foundation for real estate businesses to be more efficient. With a digital solution at their fingertips, agents can access a service that provides real value every day. In addition, agents can offer this service to their clients, connecting them to your brand long after the sale is done. For tech-savvy real estate agencies, offering a digital solution to your agents and a customer-centric service to your clients will enhance your business. Agents will be more productive and they get a service they truly value, while you retain top agents, secure market insights and gain a competitive edge,” says Zanetti.

Business News Thoughts

How the digital economy can create added value

How the digital economy can create added value

It takes a few taps on your smartphone to order lunch, request a ride or pay a bill. Without these digital tools and technologies, there would be few ways that we would be able to efficiently work, learn, shop and have fun.

The coronavirus pandemic has given rise to the digital economy, and businesses are leveraging technology to create value for consumers and employees.

The e-commerce boom

Self-isolation, lockdown restrictions and the closure of non-essential retailer outlets have changed the way we shop, to the point where it has triggered a sudden increase in online shopping activity in recent months. So much so that online shopping transactions surged as much as 60% during Black Friday 2020, compared to Black Friday the previous year.

Hordes of brick-and-mortar shoppers have been forced to migrate online to do their shopping or face winding queues and increased exposure to coronavirus infection. Those who have been bitten by the online shopping bug or at least supplemented their shopping activity with e-commerce, are taking advantage of same-day delivery, click-and-collect facilities and other value-added services. 

‘’Hey Jude experienced a sharp increase in Black Friday/Weekend and Cyber Monday requests, assisting users with finding the best deals and facilitating the entire purchasing process through a single point of contact – the Hey Jude app,’’ says Cleonè Bakker, Head of Commercial at Hey Jude.

Work vs personal time

The more the lines between work and personal life are distorted, the more on-site employees and people working remotely will have less time to do the things they love or value. Everyday activities like preparing dinner, physical exercise and family time are already difficult to get to in a day’s work, let alone juggling virtual meetings, remote learning, paying utility bills or renewing one’s driver’s licence.

‘’Digital technologies like Hey Jude – the world’s first human-powered digital assistant for busy people – are simplifying the lives of people by providing them with solutions to the challenges they face during these protracted periods of lockdown,’’ says Bakker.

The power of online platforms

Digital platforms are being leveraged to reach audiences, enhance offerings and cash-in on the potential of recurring revenues. Global giants, education institutions, celebs and influencers alike are connecting with online audiences on channels like Instagram Live and Facebook Watch to provide personal, meaningful content based on unique tastes, keeping users engaged and giving them something to come back for more.

‘’We’re seeing more requests for online fitness classes, webinars and virtual concerts as restrictions on physical gatherings and live events persist. Users can access highly customised content on-demand and in their own time, in the comfort and safety of their homes,’’ says Bakker.

Digitisation of healthcare

Advancements in digital technology are democratising healthcare and enabling medical professionals to diagnose and give advice to patients remotely, eliminating the need for physical consultations.

‘’Due to the impact of the coronavirus crisis on the mental and physical health on employees, we’re seeing more organisations turn to digital technology to facilitate healthcare and wellbeing programmes for employees and their families. We’re also seeing more users interested in the possibility of accessing GPs, councillors and psychiatrists virtually,’’ says Bakker.

In a time when people have less control over their lives than before, business leaders should utilise the benefits of digital technology to create value for customers and employees now and beyond the pandemic.

Business News Thoughts

Gearing up for 2021

Gearing up for 2021: Implementing the right processes for retaining and attracting talent

Few would have predicted that the first year of the third decade of the millennium would be turned on its head by a global pandemic. What was to be ‘twenty plenty’ became an anomaly with events that went beyond the realm of normal expectations and changed the way we work, live and play.

Most people have put 2020 behind them and set their sights on 2021. The main objective: not to get caught off guard again. Preparedness for the future has never been as high on the agenda for both individual and business. Be it upskilling to side-step redundancy and remain relevant, embracing technology and investing in digital transformation, and pivoting to turn profits, employees and employers have their work cut out for them in ensuring they are prepared for what lies ahead in 2021.

Productivity and performance

It’s safe to say that the new norm has created a working world where remote-based teams can coordinate efforts to successfully run a business. But success comes down to how well employees are equipped and supported by their employers in terms of remote working. According to the Remote Working in South Africa 2020 Report, only 23.5% of companies had a detailed strategy in place for remote working prior to lockdown. What’s worse, 60.5% of South African businesses do not have a clear stance yet on whether they will allow continued remote working in future. This leaves a lot to be desired about corporate South Africa’s appetite for supporting employees’ desires for working from home.

“Employees’ lives will be no less complicated than they were during the hard lockdown. Individuals will increasingly look to their employers to equip them with the latest technology, tools and training so that they can be at the top of their game, day in and out. Not only will they expect to be empowered to get the job done, but also in their personal lives,” says Shabadh Mathura, Head of New Business at Hey Jude.

The flexible options offered by Hey Jude, a human-powered digital assistant, add value to the lives of employees and their families. The combination of essential solutions and humans in the loop – such as expert assistants, concierge drivers and qualified teachers – enables Hey Jude to solve what’s important to users and keeps them connected during the lockdown and beyond.

Employee health and wellness

The health and well-being of employees is critical to business success. The coronavirus pandemic has affected everyone from CEO to general workers, with financial uncertainty, childcare and schooling challenges, and concerns related to family health and wellbeing among the major stressors.

“During the hard lockdown, we were receiving daily requests like getting medication delivered and finding suppliers of PPE equipment. But as the lockdown continued, we saw more health and wellness type requests come in, such as assisting with finding online workouts, arranging motivational speakers for webinars, and suggesting the best sleep apps,” says Mathura.

“Organisations need to implement processes that address mental health in the workplace, provide emotional support and encourage healthy lifestyles,” says Mathura. “With Hey Jude, employers can offer employees a direct line to experts for advice and support. If an employee is suffering from anxiety, they can be connected with a counsellor, or if they are battling to make ends meet, they can talk to a financial advisor to better manage their money, or even use Dial-A-Teacher for assistance with home-schooling,” Mathura goes on to say.

Attracting and retaining talent

The lockdown has given many employees time to consider their purpose in life and whether their career or the organisation for which they work is sustainable. Come 2021, employees and job candidates are likely to judge organisations based on its contribution to society, the environment and sustainability, and the satisfaction of their people rather than profitability.  

“The role of HR will be integral in retaining and attracting talent. Leaders must empower HR executives to create and maintain a working environment and corporate culture that looks after the well-being of employees and cultivates purposeful work and productivity,” says Mathura.  

“HR professionals should also be prepared and equipped to go fully virtual in terms of hiring candidates. We’re seeing more businesses looking at training technologies for onboarding employees remotely and enhancing this with digital assistants to walk employees through processes and be on standby to offer advice,” says Mathura.

By embracing and implementing technologies like Hey Jude now, businesses can better prepare and position themselves in 2021 to attract and retain talent and ultimately remain relevant in a post-COVID world.

Business News Thoughts

10 things to tick off this summer

The countdown to the festive season has begun! With so much to do in such little time, our Judes thought it would be beneficial to round up the top 10 tasks to help you get things sorted this summer and make it a December to remember.

1. Get your kids through exams

Whether your child needs assistance with exam preparation or just needs some career guidance, Hey Jude is here to help. We’ll put your kids in touch with qualified teachers to help gear them up with revision, past exam papers, study tips and any other exam-related questions.

2. Go on holiday

Summer isn’t cancelled after all! Time to take a break and go on holiday because you’ve earned it. Just mention a destination and Hey Jude will help you find suitable and comfy accommodation, at rates that meet your budget. We’ll also arrange affordable flights to get you there and car hire to get you around town.  

3. Get your ride ready

Before you hit the road this festive season, ensure that your vehicle undergoes all the necessary safety checks and balances. Hey Jude will assist you with best prices on tyres, including fitment, balancing and wheel alignment, as well as arranging a service at a time that suits you.

4. Wrap up your festive shopping

Looking for something special for that special someone or just want to treat yourself to something nice? Get your shopping out the way by sending your Jude your festive shopping wish list, and we’ll track down top deals and specials and arrange delivery to your door.

5. Beef up security

December is known as a time when criminals target vacant homes and loaded wallets. It’s called silly season for a reason, so be prepared for the worst. Speak to Hey Jude about your security requirements. 

6. Get outdoors

Going on leave and have zero plans? Make the most of your time off by exploring new places and going on new adventures. Reach out to your Jude about exciting outdoor activities and experiences near you, and we’ll be sure to make your December one to remember.

7. Get DIY tasks done and dusted

Get those lifelong projects off the ground and overdue DIY tasks done and dusted. Whether it’s finding specific supplies to mount that mirror or a specialist to install a canopy on your 4×4, we’re here to raise your DIY game by putting you in touch with the experts. 

8. Relax for real

Keep calm and kick back. Whether it’s enjoying a delicious meal with your family or revitalising mind, body and soul at a spa, just tell us where and when and we’ll make it happen.

9. Gear up for 2021

Want to get a head start before the new year arrives? Get geared now so that you’re ready to conquer 2021. Thinking about changing careers or insurance

9. Gear up for 2021

Want to get a head start before the new year arrives? Get geared now so that you’re ready to conquer 2021. Thinking about changing careers or insurance providers? Want to kick-start your 2021 fitness goals? Hey Jude is here to help you get it all done.

10. Download Hey Jude

If 2020 was anything to go by, the one thing that you’ll need going into 2021 is a tool to help simplify your life. Hey Jude is the world’s first human-powered digital assistance service that saves you time and money by helping you to get things done. Download the Hey Jude app by visiting the App Store or Google Play Store.

Business News Thoughts

Turning Black Friday flings into long, fruitful customer relationships

It’s that time of the year when arguably the world’s biggest retail shopping spree of the year takes off: Black Friday. Over the years, the one-day-only event has morphed into a weekend special and soon-to-be bumper month-long shopping bonanza.   

From a retail and e-commerce standpoint, cashing in on consumer appetite to splash out on big deals just before the festive season makes total business sense. In 2019, seemingly cash-strapped South Africans spent R6 billion on Black Friday – a whopping 33% year-on-year growth from 2018 – while Cyber Monday garnered a 42% growth in online transactions in the same year, ending on a total of 249 908 (up from 176 595 in 2018).

These are the type of figures that business bigwigs get excited about – all that’s needed is to jump on the Black Friday bandwagon, brandish a selection of specials in front of shopaholics and credit-fuelled customers and you could be laughing all the way to the bank. Overheads, staff overtime and website downtime may go through the roof, but making a quick buck is all worth it, right?

Wrong. Here’s why Black Friday is not all that it’s hyped up to be:

When Black Friday comes around, a business’s worst customers become their most prized customers virtually overnight. Businesses tend to invest heavily in low-value customers, with the hopes that doing so will rake in sales volumes equal to or exceeding those of high-value customers. The reality is that instead of enjoying ongoing relationships with loyal customers who make multiple purchases throughout the year, year-on-year, businesses ride their luck on low-margin purchases made by shoppers who are likely to go for specials and only shop again this time next year.

Consumer behaviour today is very different from when Black Friday first became a thing. People are more conscious about consumption – they’re basing their buying decisions on whether a brand and its offering align with their lifestyles, and are equally focused on the value they get out of a product and service. If a consumer feels that their needs are being satisfied and their well-being is being looked after 24/7/365, they won’t feel the urge to spend unnecessarily on things they don’t actually need, on a once-off shopping event.

So, how does a business go from ‘weekend special’ to ‘lifetime provider’ in the eyes of the consumer? When you anticipate customers’ needs by offering unique benefits and unrivalled customer service, not only are you adding value to their lives beyond transactions, but you are also building solid customer relationships and brand affinity that go beyond once-off purchases.  

See more in our ‘All-year-round vs Black Friday’ infographic below

Business News Thoughts

Does digital assistance make insurance relevant beyond loss coverage?

In an era of digitisation and disruption, one aspect where most insurers come up short is providing real value beyond the insurance policy.

Traditionally, insurers and brokers have (and continue to) only really engage with policyholders when it comes to policy renewals, claims and premium increases. Of course, leaders in insurance have raised the game by offering incentivised programmes that reward policyholders for driving well and not claiming. Others have supplemented customer service by developing platforms that enable policyholders to manage profiles, submit claims, get quotes online, and assess and update their policies. Some have gone as far as rewarding policyholders with cash back, and of course there is the basic hygiene factors to all policies that cover road and home assistance.

This is all great, but in a world where individual customisation and consumers want to be treated as individuals, with highly personal and customised content, insurers need to take value-added services to the next level if they want to future-proof their businesses. With lockdown restrictions seemingly here to stay, consumers are weighing up their options and fixed insurance policies are high on the ‘things-I-can-do-without-right-now lists, especially if they are spending more time at home and travelling less. If an insurance policy no longer aligns to one’s lifestyle, what is the point of paying a monthly premium for it?

Innovations and disruptions like flexible, on-demand insurance that can be switched on and off with the swipe of a smartphone, are changing the way we think about and use insurance. But as efficient as these customisable insurance solutions may be, they leave much to be desired in terms of tethering the disconnect between insurer and policyholder. The question begs, what if an insurance provider could fully immerse itself in a policyholder’s everyday life by providing them with more than just an insurance product?

What if a policyholder who is in the market for a new vehicle, could reach out to an on-demand broker or insurer in an app to assist them in finding the right car at the right price? Or if a policyholder is prompted in-app by a broker in their pocket to get their gutters cleaned before the rainy season approaches, with the option of getting a service provider to get it done for them?

A digital assistant platform that uses AI and real humans can be used as a tool to connect a policyholder’s world. Insurers can connect insurable assets to policyholders and their insurance policies and engage them on policy-related services when and where they need it. For the policyholder, being able to rely on their insurer for around-the-clock advice and assistance, would mean less hassle to get prerequisites sorted and their stuff covered. With Hey Jude, policyholders can be assisted with claims by helping them source replacements at the best price, saving them valuable time and money. Policyholders can be connected to brokers 24/7 and can enjoy the benefits of thousands of suppliers and service providers, even when not claiming. Most importantly, Hey Jude helps policyholders delegate the less valuable tasks in their lives so that they have more time to focus on the important things. For the insurer, adding value to the lives of policyholders beyond the policy not only makes the process of adding insurable assets to policies more efficient, but it also makes the business relevant beyond product or service.

Signing up for a product poorly understood and perceived as a grudge purchase by the layman during a complicated and challenging time, might seem inconceivable for most consumers. If innovations like on-demand insurance can give consumers the power to choose cover when and as they need it, then aligning lifestyles to cover and augmenting that with on-demand assistance could be the answer to insurance becoming essential, if not indispensable to consumers.

Business News Thoughts

Hey Jude Covid Care Package

PWA Solution

Hey Jude has identified a rapid, cost-effective way to roll out the Hey Jude platform worldwide. The Hey Jude COVID Care Package comprises a powerful employee value proposition that adds value to the lives of employees and their families, by providing them with vital assistance tools through an easily accessible and user-friendly Progressive Web App (PWA).

Why the COVID Care Package?

The COVID Care Package caters for the needs of both organisations and employees facing unprecedented challenges arising from the COVID-19 crisis.

The programme is designed to boost the HR mandate of increasing morale and productivity of employees, bolster talent attraction and retention, and promote company cultures that care for the well-being of employees, beyond the pay cheque.

Adopting this short-term solution enables businesses to address the immediate needs of employees and keep them engaged, while also ensuring the business remains relevant and reduces expenditure.

How it works

  • The Hey Jude COVID Care Package is a six month programme
  • Hey Jude harnesses the power of people and technology to provide businesses with Intelligence Augmentation – a better, smarter and more cost-effective way to engage with employees

What you get


  1. Bespoke Hey Jude digital personal assistant (Progressive Web App)
  2. Grocery coupons:
    1. Dis-Chem and Shoprite Checkers coupons valued up to R5 000 per employee, per month
    1. Airtime discounts
  3. Discounted rates on fibre connectivity products
  4. Financial assistance for employees under financial strain
  5. Access to Hello Teacher – a tutor service for learners in Grade 1 to 12 for all major subjects in the South African syllabus, in all 11 official languages


  • Monthly PowerBI reporting
  • Standard marketing pack
  • Informational web page on the campaign


Hey Jude provides analytic solutions for clients to gain deeper insights into understanding employee behavior. We use Power BI – a programme that transforms company data into rich visuals in a single dashboard – so that you can get a comprehensive perspective on what matters most to your business and its employees.