The robots are coming!
Well, technically they’re already here and have been for some time, but they are still coming! Global trends indicate robotic process automation (RPA) and artificial intelligence (AI) technologies are slowly becoming the new norm. This is a trend now affectionately known as the fourth industrial revolution. Companies with large numbers of customers or users have begun to realise what these new technologies can achieve for their business. Chances are you’ve probably come across some of their new employees, or at least heard about them. Think about Alexa from Amazon, Siri from Apple, Cortana from Microsoft. Their purpose is to respond to queries and commands but also to interact with customers. With this technology, instead of a significant proportion of a company’s workforce being comprised of call centre representatives, many employees can be reassigned to more productive tasks. What a dream- no more having to ask customers if they’ve tried turning their device off and on again!
But how do these wide-sweeping trends impact small to medium sized enterprises? What can these businesses do to take part in this new industrial revolution?
Unsurprisingly, with lockdowns, social distancing, and complications to workforces and workflows, Covid-19 has accelerated already existing trends in automation. No business has been spared, no matter the size. Social distancing measures have redefined the modern workplace and forced businesses to adapt. Customer expectations have changed too; speed and the feeling of personalised service are no longer a bonus but are downright demands! Underneath these changes, technological trends have remained relatively consistent. RPA and AI technologies have steadily evolved into effective and efficient solutions to resolve weaknesses laid bare by COVID. And this is just the beginning.