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[ARTICLE] Hybrid Automation Should Empower Your Team, Not Replace Them

Article from Srilata Sridhar

Imagine a scenario where your Product or IT team is as invested in the business growth and expansion strategy of your organization as you are. Or a world where your marketing specialists felt empowered enough to share their functional expertise to enhance your overall business performance rather than looking exclusively at their own monthly KPIs. The reality is that for many organizations, employees lack the bandwidth to think about the bigger picture because they’re too busy putting out fires in their respective departments. However, it doesn’t always have to be like this.

It’s a positive development that C-level executives no longer gauge performance solely on balance sheets—nowadays, technological transformation is also inclusive of human experience. The following report by leading tech giant IBM states that 75% of C-level executives believe that intelligent automation will improve their business performance in the coming years, suggesting that automation will only become more popular (and necessary!) for businesses going forward.

When your employees take on greater responsibility through upskilling or professional development, they are better aligned to contribute to an organization’s overall performance. Unfortunately, most teams are still stuck in the process of completing mundane and low-level tasks, preventing them and your organization from utilizing their full potential.

“The reality is that for many organizations, employees lack the bandwidth to think about the bigger picture because they’re too busy putting out fires in their respective departments.”

In recent years, one of the most common discussions in the tech world has been how automation may displace the human workforce. Employees are often afraid that robots will take their jobs and livelihoods. While their fear is not entirely invalid, many often fail to see the bigger picture—that is, harmonious work and high-value upskilling opportunities.

How Hybrid Automation Can Help Your Workforce Thrive

When it comes to full-scale automation, modern organizations have some serious hurdles to overcome. Hybrid Automation is different. The dual-pronged approach of human and machine creates value for teams by breaking down the barriers that traditional automation or a DIY approach often miss. Hybrid Automation platforms like Wrk automate workflows which, in turn, complete repetitive tasks–allowing your team to focus on key activities. In other words, this means you can invest your time and efforts in building fool-proof strategies, creating new assets, or even launching a truly disruptive product into the market.

But before we see what this means for your team, let’s break down some myths around automation.

Dispelling the Myths

While there are quite a few myths floating around about automation, these are two of the most controversial:

Machines are snatching jobs (and livelihoods) away

While it is true that automation-led technologies have replaced and augmented many of the manual systems that were commonplace in the 20th century, they have not eradicated the need for human intelligence and judgement, superior cognitive skills, or nuanced decision making. In fact, the World Economic Forum estimates that automation will create 58 million jobs by 2022, which will likely be high-level, skilled positions. This has allowed businesses in many verticals to focus on more strategic goals including refining customer support processes, enhanced client representative strategies, and nurturing relationship managers, etc.

With Hybrid Automation platforms like Wrk, the aim is to support employees rather than displace them. It takes into account the pros and cons of each facet of work and synthesizes the strengths of both machines and humans for optimal results. This ensures that people remain at the epicenter of the power dynamic, and technology is the tool that empowers them to be better, faster, and more in control of their time at work.

Automation is smarter

Again, false. While there are some tasks that machines do better than humans, they definitely aren’t the sole proprietors of efficient and consistent outputs. For instance, even with modern automation at manufacturing facilities, a Quality Assurance Lead is still needed to oversee quality. With Hybrid Automation, the opportunity is there for your team’s employees to continually move towards high-value roles which need human judgement and problem-solving. In these cases, automation will almost always help rather than replace a human workforce.

Human Empowerment in Action

When employees are overlooked and undervalued, they often leave. There is no point in hiring a skilled employee if they spend the majority of their time doing tasks that are purely process-based, monotonous, and not contributing to the greater good of your organization’s overall strategy. In fact, this flawed process can lead to a higher attrition rate.

“With Hybrid Automation platforms like Wrk, the aim is to support employees rather than displace them.”

By automating mundane, time-consuming tasks, you can empower your team to focus on the bigger picture. It also relaxes the pressure to adapt to new technologies and platforms every few months. This can all be done in one place through a platform like Wrk, meaning more free time and additional resources for your team to engage in upskilling and the opportunity to take on leadership opportunities.

Here are some ways that Hybrid Automation can be used in real-life scenarios.

Recruitment and Onboarding

The quality of onboarding and recruitment processes at a company dictates the quality of the team hired. Often, companies have to deal with bad hires who increase recruitment and training expenses that, in turn, lead to a poorer-quality product or service. One way to tackle this is to have automated processes that manage the end-to-end stages of recruitment. This includes creating workflows for job postings, sorting applications in terms of experience and suitability and even setting up the onboarding process for new hires.

Customer Service

In any industry today, customer service is crucial and related feedback often dictates how a brand is perceived in the market. Automating customer support tasks provides benefits like shorter response time, higher close-rates, and better customer satisfaction. These are key parameters to judge a company’s service performance.

Retail Industry

The retail industry is another space that can use Hybrid Automation to overcome operational inefficacies. Issues like order misplacement, delays in shipment, and delivery mishaps are too commonplace in the retail sector, especially with more and more commerce being done online. Retail giants and small businesses alike can automate purchase order matching, integrate order data into various systems for real-time tracking, and, in general, provide an added peace of mind for their customers.

Inspire Your Customers and Engage Your Team with Hybrid Automation

With Hybrid Automation platforms like Wrk, you can invest the extra hours and resources it affords you and dedicate them to employee development—a process that is often side-lined when your employees are bogged down by tedious, repetitive processes.

Optimizing Hybrid Automation to best meet your business’s unique set of needs is also a smart way to build employee trust and create a unified workforce. It’s how you can enable your team to work smarter and get the most out of their jobs.

Finally, by streamlining your company’s operations through Hybrid Automation, you can change the way your organization and your customers interact with technology, for the better.

Interested in learning more about Hybrid Automation? Discover how it works here, or catch Wrk’s Co-Founder, Mohannad El-Barachi as a panelist in the Digital Tools & Technologies for Success Panel at The Digital Transformation Conference, North America taking place on October 28 at 2pm EST.

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