How To Build A Future-Ready Workforce With Intelligent Automation
With technological advancements taking speed and the global pandemic pushing the rapid adoption of digital technologies by several years, it has changed how employees and employers view work and the workplace.
In the past, a workforce could be defined as a group “comprising of the people directly employed by an organization,” according to Deloitte. Today, however, the workforce is very different.
More than just humans, the modern workforce is now a hybrid of people and technology such as drones, intelligent automation (IA), chatbots, and more.
Besides streamlining workflows and increasing productivity and efficiency, technology can help organizations redesign and reimagine what it means to work. It enables both human and technological workforces to do work at which they excel. For example, businesses can delegate employees to tasks that require human connection, empathy, and imagination, while they can task technological systems with routine, rule-based, and repetitive tasks.
Understanding a new era of working and what the future-ready workforce demands are only the first step. To leverage the unique capabilities of both humans and technology and integrate them to drive higher levels of productivity and efficiency, organizations need to take steps towards developing and cultivating systems to meet these challenges.
Here are a few ways businesses can build a future-ready workforce with IA.
Use workplace analytics and planning to understand the current workforce
Before proposing and implementing solutions, it is essential to understand the organization’s current workforce. Doing so will allow you to identify any gaps between current and future capabilities.
Workplace analytics and planning helps organizations get a holistic perspective of their current workforce and identify risks and opportunities to feed into recruitment and reskilling strategies. IA tools can provide effective, efficient, and accurate data-backed insights such as identifying the vast range of tasks done every day and giving performance analytics of the various technologies and employees in the organization.
Educate and nurture leaders and employees to embrace new ways of working
As highlighted by Guanchun Wang (Arvid), CEO and Chairman of Laiye, the biggest challenge of IA lies not in the technology itself but the culture and mindset of companies and their employees.
“Most companies face a ‘legacy mindset’ when capitalizing on IA. They deploy a piecemeal approach to modernize and automate specific processes but fail to see how a holistic approach could significantly impact the entire business ecosystem and create more value,” said Arvid.
Companies have started upskilling and educating their workers with modernized learning approaches and strategies, such as Digital Learning Academies. In contrast with traditional learning strategies, artificial intelligence(AI)-based online learning platforms have the capabilities suited for the modern workforce and enable learning to be delivered in scale while being customized to every individual’s needs.
Educating employees and leaders will help unlock their potential, allowing for more rapid digital transformation throughout the company and an agile team that can continuously adapt to the fast-changing demands of the workforce.
Invest in the right digital tools to help employees work better
Besides educating and nurturing employees to adopt new digital technologies, equipping them with the right digital tools is essential in building a future-ready workforce. Microsoft’s CEO, Satya Nadella, highlights an example of how AI tools can bridge language barriers. Machine translation can transcribe and provide translations in real-time, allowing employees to communicate with cross-country teams and collaborate better.
According to the MIT Center for Information Systems Research, when employees have the knowledge and understanding of configurable digitalized work technologies and can find, access, and use them, it “empowers non-IT specialists to work collaboratively with others to redesign where, how, and by whom work is done”.
Organizations are racing to keep pace amidst an accelerating world more than ever before. While technology provides solutions for reskilling and upskilling the workforce, change must also come from the top. Leadership teams must sustain the evolution by developing a culture that promotes innovation and learning. Building a future-ready workforce takes time and effort; however, with the right mindset and leverage on intelligent technologies, organizations can achieve their full potential to drive new levels of success.
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