Super Humans: How intelligent automation is making employees more efficient
Recently, I was travelling overseas and had a problem with the international roaming pack in terms of running out of minutes and data that I had anticipated I would use. The Intelligent Automation systems installed by the telecom operator I use suggested that I use another pack for almost the same cost when the system knew that I was going to travel back the same day I ran out of the pack. And, honestly, there was no assistance that the Intelligent Automation system was able to provide me with.
That is when I had a conversation with a telecom company representative who was able to understand the issue and resolved by overriding the process and adding some extra minutes and data just enough to give me cover till I was back home to ensure that I did not get a bill shock.
The reason the person on the other end of the call was able to help is because he had the information and was spared from doing repeated functions which is now taken over by the Intelligent Automation systems so that they can handle exceptions.
New business models demand automation
The world is changing with new business models emerging in the retail and logistics businesses. Every customer is now investing in automation and digital transformation because of the impact that the pandemic has had on global business.
FOMO or Fear-of-Missing-Out is setting in and businesses are quickly adapting to the new world, ensuring that the cardinal truth of all businesses – boosting productivity, increasing revenue and streamlining operations – remains primary focus.
The mundane things which are low-value, time-consuming, but can’t be wished away, like invoice matching to ensure that Procurement to Pay functions, CMR based capture of documents or all other repetitive functions, are managed by Intelligent Automation, and employees or human interface gets involved in only solving complex problems.
Processes are being automated with information that reach central repositories in large volumes, with significant variety and with ferocious velocities (speed at which data reaches the central repositories).
This requires for standardisation of processes, sanitisation of data and change management across organisations to see this new environment being adopted.
Artificial Intelligence and Process Automation open new doors for innovation
Artificial Intelligence with Process Automation has created a new niche for businesses to invest in Intelligent Automation to innovate and remain relevant in their areas of business.
So, then if all this is already happening what are the humans expected to do? The answer is fairly simple – they are expected to solve complex problems and transform into Super Humans. Yes, with call | contact centres being fuelled by Intelligent Automation (IA) driven bots, humans are more efficiently used to solve complex issues, which is an exception for the Intelligent Automation (IA) driven systems.
The world is changing and employees are now able to streamline their focus and energy in solving tangible, profitable and enriching tasks whereas the Intelligent Automation (IA) systems will take care of the regular mundane process driven functions.
The use cases are many and the efficiencies to the businesses are very encouraging. According to a recent Deloitte report, businesses using IA correctly are likely to witness an average cost reduction of 22% and increased revenue of 11% in the next three years. In fact, organisations currently scaling IA have already achieved a 27% average cost reduction from their implementation.
In a Post Covid world, every organisation is trying to save money and arrest their bottom line, every dollar saved is adding to the top-line and with such encouraging results that organisations are seeing with implementation of IA this would become a must have rather than a good to have capability in all businesses.
Humans Solving Complex and Exceptional Issues
With the advent of Intelligent Automation (IA) life on the shop floor for Retail, Banking, Insurance and Healthcare will change. Human intervention will only help to solve complex issues, handle exceptions from the IA processes and enhance the revenues for the organisation. This will help achieving better productivity but more importantly provide employees with more meaning in their jobs.
As Yuval Noah Harari in his book 21 Lessons for the 21st Century prophecies, Artificial Intelligence and Process Automation will create a deadly combination of Intelligent Automation (IA). Human intervention will never be nullified – Intelligent Automation would just make employees better at what they are doing, focused on enhancing revenue and relevance and in the process truly making them Super Humans.
(The author is Mr. Pallab Mitra, Global Director Sales & Marketing, Trangile Services Pvt Ltd. and the views expressed in this article are his own)