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Why the Workplace of the Future will Depend on AI and How It Impacts Employees

Here’s the question on everyone’s mind: Is artificial intelligence (AI) going to take my job? The simple answer is: No. Looking to the workforce of the not-so-distant future, AI will be at the center of its evolution. AI will be the springboard for employees and employers alike to find smarter, more efficient ways to get the job done.

It can be scary to imagine what your job could look like, since there isn’t a crystal ball to peer into (yet). But we do know that there is more to be excited about than there is to fear. We’re looking at workplaces where workers can have a greater impact at their companies, while not being overburdened with boring tasks. 

It’s also an environment where employees are encouraged to learn and grow, so they can keep up with the constantly changing landscape of technology. The addition of AI will be more monumental than the addition of office-wide email or laptops and the ability to work remotely. AI is truly going to change the way we work for the better.

 

What AI’s Role will Be in the Workplace

Automation will take over and perform time-consuming tasks.

Yes, some tasks will be automated thanks to AI, but the goal is not to completely eliminate people from the working world. Ideally, the mundane, unengaging tasks we all dread doing on the daily that take up most of our time can be done by AI. Nearly two-thirds of today’s job roles can automate 30% of their daily tasks

If you’re working a typical 9 to 5, that means freeing up an entire day and a half every week. So this efficient digital worker will take care of the menial tasks, leaving the actual employee time to focus on other, more important tasks.

For example, take the typical office manager. Their time can be consumed with managing office requests from employees, placing supply orders, and other routine tasks that are needed to keep an office up and running. Imagine that an office manager now has an AI-powered platform that automatically monitors office supply usage, orders supplies, and fields all requests through a tracking system that just needs manager approval.

No longer consumed with routine administrative tasks, this office manager can now focus on hosting events to boost company culture or facilitate opportunities for employees’ professional development. With the power of AI, the office manager’s job has completely transformed. They’re now a learning specialist, a culture champion, and an administrative manager – all wrapped into one. 

 

Companies will become more productive and efficient with AI.

So we’ve already covered how AI can automate some of the most time-consuming tasks, but the most beneficial aspect of AI is that it can also be the key to making smarter decisions that result in higher business impact (hint, hint: ROI).

According to Deloitte’s report, “State of AI in the Enterprise”, “82 percent [of companies who invested in AI] said they have gained a financial return from their AI investments. For companies across all industries, the median return on investment from cognitive technologies is 17 percent.” That’s a huge return, and it can in part be attributed to AI’s ability to make better, data-driven decisions.

Let’s say you apply a machine learning algorithm that works with your company’s customer service help desk. It can learn from the frequently asked questions and automatically provide content to answer those questions. A customer service representative, then, becomes the manager of that process and gets a higher level picture of customer needs. 

They might see an opportunity to develop a training program that would reduce customer service calls by 30%. If implemented, it could result in a significant reduction in customer service costs. With the help of AI, that customer service representative can create a greater impact on their department and do more meaningful work. That’s the future of work – and it’s time to get ready for it. 

 

How the Workforce Will Grow Alongside AI

Employees will develop a better set of skills to do their jobs. 

When an employee’s time is freed up, they have the capacity to learn and focus on their personal development. 74% of workers would like to use their free time at work for additional learning. If employees are given more time to develop new skills, they can feel supported by their employers and are ultimately happier employees.  

Not only does incorporating AI to support personal development create happier employees and a better employee experience, but it just makes good business sense. Harvard Business Review shows, in some instances, it is six times more expensive to hire new talent with a certain skill set than it is to build technical skills internally. 

Upskilling current employees will be the strategic key to keeping hiring costs down, and freeing up time to create better-skilled employees, AI is entirely transforming how learning and development programs work. 

We all know that AI can be used to personalize pretty much everything in our lives, from our Netflix suggestions to the marketing promotions we receive. That same level of personalization can be applied to workplace learning. 

Iris is an AI tool from the online education company, Pluralsight. It uses assessments to determine an individual’s skill level and creates a specific learning plan tailored to their needs. This way, a person can focus on developing the most important skills in the most efficient way.

 

Exciting new roles in AI will be created for people to move into.

Along with upskilling, the widespread use of AI will create jobs that will need people who are adept with this new technology and have great soft skills. While AI can and will automate jobs without the need for employee intervention, it’s also true that employees will need to learn to interact with and manage artificially intelligent technologies. AI could create 58 million net new jobs over the next few years. 

Ready to jump into the world of AI? Take a look at how AllyO creates a delightful experience for candidates and employees by automating the recruiting and hiring process. 

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