Intelligent Enterprise- When I was a kid, I used to watch cartoons as I got dressed for school. My favorite was The Jetsons: the flying cars, the robot maid, food served hot at the touch of a button. The only thing I could never figure out was why – despite all the seemingly futuristic advances – George still went to work every day and pushed a bunch of buttons? It stayed with me, even as I got older, and when I’d find an old episode of The Jetsons on cable, it would really vex me.
If a robot could do the household chores and give advice to Judy and little Elroy – couldn’t a robot make Spacely Sprockets? Would automation and robotics really change the burden of work…or were we all just destined to be George Jetson – nothing more than Homer Simpson with a cooler car?
Fortunately, the future is here, and it’s turned out quite a bit differently. The robots aren’t cleaning my house, but they are cleansing my sales pipeline, automating back office finance operations like invoice matching and receivables, and improving accuracy in demand planning, product design, and revenue forecasting. Enterprise intelligence – machine learning, IoT, robotic process automation and artificial intelligence – is transforming a host of industries from retail and consumer goods to energy industries like utilities to the manufacturing of everything from chemicals to pharmaceuticals to sprockets, I mean rockets (or even just cars.)
Technology and the Future of Work
Technology is having a profound impact on the future of work, and will continue to do so. For example, consider the following four trends in Artificial Intelligence that directly impact the workforce: Facial Recgonition could impact 1.8 million jobs; Natural Language Processing will impact more than 3 million call center workers; Self-checkout impacts more than 3.4 million cashiers; autonomous driving will impact more than 3.5 million commercial drivers. Meanwhile, 58 million new jobs – in categories which don’t exist, or which barely exist – will be created by 2022.
The future will require employees to team with the machine. Skills related to learning, adaptability and collaboration will be essential. There will be an impact to job roles, productivity and margins, recruiting strategy, enablement and training at scale to move worker populations, and employee engagement. We face several people-related questions: how do you design the agile workforce of the future that balances employees with continent labor?
How do you attract, grow, and retain the diverse talent that we need to compete in the global digital economy? And how do you orchestrate ideal employee experiences and provide meaningful work for 5 different generations? Further, the “perfect storm” of demographic shifts is occurring simultaneously with innovation advancements – every organization is facing talent demand and competitive disruption.
Applying Customer Experience and Employee Experience
At the heart of this shift is empathy. Instead of treating people as assets, capital, or resources, we treat them as human beings and design solutions around their individual needs. Today savvy companies are applying the same set of tools for Customer Experience (CX) to Employee Experience (EX). Given the time it takes to hire top talent and the costs of staff turnover, we simply can’t afford to lose great talent. There is also a direct link from employee experience -> employee engagement and behaviors -> customer experience -> customer satisfaction -> and ultimately to long-term loyalty by raving fans. We see examples of this with many successful companies today.