The rise of artificial intelligence (AI) may seem a daunting prospect on the surface. In truth, however, this rapidly developing technology presents a wealth of opportunities for businesses looking to upskill their workforce and transform the user experience.
One of the latest examples from the B2B world comes in the form of Salesforce’s spring release dubbed Einstein for its ability to build data models automatically.
AI systems aren’t the thing of dark science fiction depiction, here to create havoc and ensure robotic domination. Instead, the reality is that the rise of AI will usher in a new age of human and robotic collaboration and, most importantly, the intuitiveness sought by consumers – a more automated version of business intelligence.
In this age where AI is deemed to be important for the UK economy – so much so that the UK government will invest £20 million in robotics and AI – the technology will soon serve as an extension to the consumer-grade technology that already exists in the workplace.
Business applications like Salesforce, G Suite and WorkDay have not replaced humans, instead they’ve helped free up valuable time for workers to become more creative and focus on innovative and higher value activities.
AI will continue this trend and allow workers to focus on the processes which benefit them and their customers most on a day-to-day basis.
Embrace the innovative
Embracing this new technology, rather than rebelling against it, will be crucial. The rise of robotics presents the perfect opportunity to upskill the workforce, providing workers with the freedom to upgrade their skill set, because robotics take the strain on those tasks which were once restrictive, mundane or time consuming.
For industries such as manufacturing, robotic technology has been responsible for transforming simple yet time-consuming processes that have taken up valuable resources. Not only is the technology able to provide more consistent and reliable outcomes, it is now evolving through the integration of big data and AI into agile machines. Robotics are now capable of constantly improving and innovating to ensure that this sector is able to grow and thrive.
As organisations become more productive, more time and money can be invested in engaging with the workforce. This in turn creates a strong company culture and keeps retention rates high as workers have more time for themselves – to learn new things as well as counter long hours that prove unproductive.
What this ultimately means is that a better worker experience creates a better customer experience. The two are intrinsically linked. Happy workers mean happy customers. Digital transformation and the prospect of robotics will continue to have a role in creating this virtuous cycle.
A transformative workplace
With IDC predicting that 1 trillion networked devices will be hooked up worldwide by 2025, the rise of AI will also have significant benefits on the way businesses operate their workspaces. Soon every business will be able to suggest efficiency savings, adjust lighting, temperature and acoustics in meeting rooms based on occupancy and agendas, and even alert workers when toilet cubicles are vacant! This will lead to the redesign of the office as we know it.
Such a redevelopment to the way we work will ensure that office spaces align much more closely with employee working habits, helping to boost engagement, collaboration and wellbeing. Real-time information will also help businesses deliver the worker experience that best suits each individual need.
Trends such as flexible working or reduced office hours shouldn’t be approached with a one-size-fits-all approach, rather the rise of AI will help to make each employee happier, more relaxed and ultimately more productive. This will have significant benefits for every business.
The key to succeeding with technology is not to be seduced by the technology per se. No technology offers a silver bullet. Rather, companies should focus on the required customer and worker outcomes, and understand their core capability needs (or pain points) in driving these outcomes. This will help to leverage the substantial benefits of the transformative workplace and to steer clear of the pitfalls.
Sourced from Greg Bohlen, senior director of strategy and digital, EMEA, Appirio