How the Digital Workforce is Changing the Future of Business
“Digital workforce” is an emerging term used to describe a workforce made up of software bots and other digital technologies that can be used to automate manual processes.
This article discusses the benefits of utilizing a digital workforce and how it can be used to improve efficiency, accuracy, and cost savings. Digital technology won’t solve all your challenges, but it can rapidly change the way your business operates.
What Is a Digital Workforce?
Robotic process automation has been around for a while, and still, many companies haven’t adopted it or even know what it is. RPA is a digital worker that can perform manual data entry on any app, website, or system.
RPA technology is relatively easy to implement, but many businesses still rely on their employees to do that work. The manual, repetitive tasks are where a digital worker shines.
A digital bot can take over this work so your staff can do something more meaningful. And doing more fulfilling work is not only an ideal, but it’s also becoming necessary to retain quality talent.
The stakes are high, according to Kristine Dery, a research scientist with the MIT Center for Information Systems Research, who studies employee experience.
“There’s a lot of opportunity here, and companies are leaving a lot of value on the cutting room floor by not investing in the experience of their employees,” she said.
So how can a digital worker, or an entire digital workforce, improve the employee experience?
Benefits of a Digital Workforce
Digital workers have the potential to run 24/7, creating records, retrieving and inputting data, and providing your team with the info it needs around the clock. What could your team learn if they had more time? How would they service your clients?
You can develop bots specialized for specific processes, like invoice data entry, collections, and inbound shipping, that are unique to your business needs. Combining multiple bots (even hundreds) gives companies a winning edge to reach higher levels of efficiency, data accuracy, and faster customer service.
Including digital workers can open opportunities to upskill your existing employees. 34% of business leaders have seen a positive impact from their digital transformation.
Everyone manages their time differently. Some are more organized than others, but if you could do something to make your team more productive across the board, then they’d likely do it.
Many companies have tons of documents and manual entry-type work. Teams that manage these processes are prone to error, fatigue, and, frankly, get bored with the routine. Digital bots offer a consistent way to ramp up productivity.
Related Article: The Future of Robotic Process Automation
Handing off these consistent but dull tasks to a bot instead of a human helps the employee manage their time on high-IQ tasks that stimulate their creativity and intellect.
There is both personal productivity (how effectively and efficiently an individual handles their responsibilities) and the productivity of the business to consider.
Digital workers can assist individuals with their daily tasks but also serve the broader objectives of the business (customer service times, record management, compliance, etc.).
Sticking a high-level employee to a task beneath their pay-grade burns cash. Assigning your team to high-value roles creates more value, which will generate indirect cost savings for the organization—if you have the right people.
Companies that embrace digital transformation are up to 26% more profitable than competitors and enjoy up to 12% higher market valuation.
Despite fancy tech, time is money remains true. Offloading work to digital workers creates opportunities to relocate time to your human staff. Doing this well will let your star employees shine by taking on new challenges that will drive the company forward.
Related Article: Making Your Business Elastic with Intelligent Automation
Another angle is scaling up new hires or fires based on the season. These market fluctuations are expensive to manage. Hiring and training new staff is costly. How well organizations respond to change creates novel ways to smooth market fluctuations. Digital workers offer a key to becoming more elastic.
The nature of manual tasks is that they are full of errors. When paperwork for loan documents is wrong or incomplete, a loan officer has to identify the issue, then reach out to the respective party to retrieve the correct information.
Over 92% of organization leaders who adopt digital transformation strategies do so to improve their customer experience.
Even the most intelligent person will make mistakes copying and pasting info into an Excel spreadsheet or a CRM. When a teammate goes to check it later, the incorrect information creates extra emails, IMs, and sub-par customer service times.
Automated solutions provide quality at speed by inputting accurate data into apps or collecting from documents based on your requirements. It doesn’t deviate from their scripts and offers precise data for you and your team each time.
Digital workers are immensely flexible. Like a Swiss Army Knife, they have a variety of functions, but the best part is that you can customize each extension.
What does customization look like? Think about the workflow of a particular department. You likely have teams that collect and verify customer data, enter it into multiple systems, and create reports.
On average, digital transformation significantly impacts 67% of employees, Dery said, and reducing the complexity of employee-facing technologies better equips employees to add value and determines skill-building priorities.
No matter what your industry is, automated systems can interact with SaaS-based apps and connect all your systems and applications that you use now and add later. It acts as an additional layer that interacts with your enterprise software based on your prerequisites and goals.
Digital workers are both a tool for efficiency and a way to empower and augment your teams. Employees who work in tandem with automations have more time for quality, thought-provoking work and time for learning new skills.
The opportunity for cost savings, streamlining the customer experience with quality data, and flexibility to integrate with any tech stack make adopting digital workers a powerful addition to your team.
Customers expect an Amazon-like experience, and now with digital workers, it’s easy and affordable to give it to them.
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About Jason Dzamba
Director of Media Relations, Productivity Strategist, and Host of Inside the Bot Podcast, Jason uses a process-driven to help leaders optimize their actions and achieve their most important goals. His creative outlet is painting abstract art and producing music. He lives in Miami, Florida, with his three kids.
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