Get with the Program: Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning are not just the wave of the future. They are here and already being are being used by companies to simplify and automate work processes.  The trend will only increase, so it’s important as business leaders to be prepared for what lies ahead. Here are four ways that artificial intelligence will change how we work in the not-too-distant future.

Automation

The advancement of artificial intelligence in the workplace means that a variety of tasks once performed by humans will be taken over by digital brains. Obviously, this means that some jobs will be rendered obsolete, especially those of lower skilled workers. However, new positions will surely open that center around building, fixing, improving, and maintaining artificial intelligence programs. So, encourage your staff to get ahead of the curve and take interest in learning about artificial intelligence before it becomes a mainstay of every workplace.

Conversation

Virtual assistants like Siri and Alexa are now commonplace for consumers.  While AI assistants are a lot more challenging in a business or enterprise environment due to the complexity of varying tools and workflows, in the  future, businesses won’t need people to field their customers’ initial calls and requests.  In fact, one study estimates that 85% of interactions with customers will be carried out without human beings by the year 2020, with the ability of these systems to provide customers answers, solutions, and information when they needed, as well as the ability to adapt to changing expectations and needs.

Productivity

AI will provide valuable insights into employee behavior, including the actions they are taking, the information they are consuming, and the network and colleagues with whom they are connected.  This information will enable companies to identify change agents or subject matter experts and tap them as needed.

AI will also improve employee performance and productivity, positively impacting the everyday jobs of your employees.  AI will be able to analyze your workers’ tasks and routines and lay out the blueprint for task 2 before the employee has completed task 1.  This analysis will help the software predict the tools and services each worker will need for their next project, which will eliminate steps to find information, ultimately expediting workflow.  This will result in a more engaged workforce, empowered to do the purposeful and meaningful work they aspire to do.

Human Touch

While some positions will become automated, resulting in elimination of those positions, people will never be removed from the equation.  While machines will focus on repetitive and routine tasks, people will be free from the mundane tasks to focus on ideation, innovation, competition, and higher level projects and tasks of interest to them.  Further, the last decade has seen employees struggling with work/life balance, low use of vacation leave, stress, and burnout. Perhaps the rise in AI will give reason to employers to rethink how work is accomplished in a knowledge economy and enable employees to reclaim their lives.

We’re just scratching the surface of what artificial intelligence will be able to accomplish. But soon enough it will become a vital part of many businesses and reshape the work world as we know it. Don’t be caught off-guard, stay ahead of the curve and learn as much as you can about AI while it is being developed.

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