The rise of robots in organizations has resulted in two schools of thought—those who believe robots will replace humans and those who believe robots will help humans perform better. Our view is that the world has reached a tipping point where robots and humans are set to thrive in a symbiotic partnership. It’s time to start thinking, “Can a bot do this task for me?”
We often hear threats of the imminent doom headed our way in the form of artificially intelligent robots. Instead of considering robotics and cognitive technologies as a way to reduce the need for humans, organizations should be considering how the future of work drives complementary capacity created by automation. HR and Learning & Development (L&D) have a significant opportunity to help the organization transition toward structures capable of moving faster, learning rapidly, and embracing the dynamic, human-centered careers created as a result of digital proliferation and increased automation.
Ever since the first industrial revolution, humans have needed to support processes by performing mundane, rule-based work. Now that technology is catching up in the digital revolution, humans can be released from those clerical and transactional roles to deliver the value of which we are capable. We see many examples in HR where this transition is already occurring. But the real opportunity is for HR to take ownership for blending and enabling a workplace mixed with human and digital talent, while leading the organization toward the augmented workforce of the future.
Posted by Dave Smith on July 13, 2017.
If your organization outsources some of its HR services—or is planning to—you’ll likely have a set of criteria for evaluating vendors. While there are many important factors to consider, a vendor’s current or planned use of robotic process automation (RPA) is a newer and increasingly important criterion that should not be overlooked. RPA’s ability to drive efficiencies, reduce costs, free resources, and support overall HR sustainability make it a key capability. You should expect your vendor to be using RPA and understand how you can benefit from it.
In our first post on this topic, we addressed the question: Can robots replace HR? While the answer is “not entirely,” there is no doubt this technology represents both a significant disruptor and opportunity for HR. To back it up, our team has spent the last couple months working with early adopter clients and deploying internal Deloitte pilots to better understand the potential of robotics and cognitive solutions within the HR function. Our experience to date indicates there are three primary capabilities where digital options should be considered to supplement and augment the human talent in HR.
Automation and artificial intelligence are hot topics these days, to the extent President Obama has recently started to position the future of smarter technologies as a critical topic for his successor to address.1 This transformation has broad impacts, but the changes expected in the HR function and the overall workplace are of significant interest.