COVID lockdowns, increased customer expectations and changes in workforce demographics have led to skyrocketing investments in digital transformation technology that includes robotic process automation (RPA), decision management and business workflow automation. Organizations have realized tremendous success using these tools. However, the current situation calls for more than incremental productivity improvements; today’s labor shortages demand a dramatic shift in how workers engage with automation.
As baby boomers are leaving the market, approximately 2.4 million fewer workers are entering every year. The pandemic has also impacted immigration policies and overall values around work-life balance, impacting the skills available in the workforce. According to major analysts, the attrition rate is at a record high, with a 10.5-point increase in the average exit rate.
The world needs a new vision and means to counter these gaps. IBM believes that by giving every employee access to automation, Watson Orchestrate digital employees will allow your workforce to meet the unique needs of today’s business challenges.
Scale your workforce with ease
A digital employee is the future of how we interact with our applications, accomplish work and rethink our business processes. It turns repetitive, programmable tasks over to a computer so that you can make the most of your current talent and mitigate gaps in skills. This allows humans to focus on strategy, clients, partners and other more meaningful tasks.
Today, I’m pleased to share the availability of our Watson Orchestrate closed beta, a CES Innovation Honoree. This AI-powered automation technology represents a new vision for the future of how we work as managers and knowledge workers.
What makes Watson Orchestrate so unique?
Think of a digital employee as a junior member of your team that has the ability to perform repeatable units of work (i.e., ‘skills’). This employee has their own employee ID, organizational assignment and system credentials. Their skills can consist of, for example, pulling an employee training report, creating a quote in Salesforce or updating a marketing events performance dashboard. You can activate a digital employee through natural language interactions from collaboration tools like Slack and email or by having them listen for and react to specific business events.
How is a digital employee different than an RPA bot or simple chatbot? It breaks away from a bot’s pre-programmed answer tree by using artificial intelligence (AI) technology to dynamically select the skills needed to complete not just an assigned task, but the series of tasks and workflows that make up complete processes.
A digital employee uses its memory of past interactions to optimize the selection and execution of subsequent skills based on context. It is not only able execute a single skill, but can sequence multiple skills at once to complete more complex workflows on the fly. The dynamic nature of the AI allows employees to drive automations to address their unique use cases, providing the flexibility to work with digital employees in the ways that best fit their needs. With Watson Orchestrate, your employees will have the ability to delegate tasks, manage exceptions and automate work in ways they couldn’t before.
What can Watson Orchestrate do for your business?
Each month we see record numbers of people quitting their jobs. This trend threatens to saddle your remaining workforce with an unachievable workload or, even worse, bring parts of your business to a halt. But today’s labor shortage presents us with a unique opportunity to reassess how we do business — to work smarter, not harder.