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Digital futures: facilitating the human touch

Digital futures: facilitating the human touch

Do you remember the days of the ‘analogue office’?  Carbon copiers and typewriters may have been consigned to history but the fact is: our journey into the digital age is still in its infancy. Just around the corner is a brave new world, where innovation and technology not only promise to change the way we work but transform our businesses and broaden their appeal.

So, says Dr Pietro Micheli, Professor of Business Performance and Innovation, at Warwick Business School, who has authored two new illustrated guides on ‘The Rise of Digital Technology’ for Crown Workforce Management.

In the first guide, available from www.crownworkforcemanagement.com/digital1, Dr Micheli, looks at what we mean by digitisation and how this links into business analytics and provides opportunities for automation and augmentation.

Although digital frameworks and applications are used extensively within the modern workplace, many organisations are still underusing the capacity of the systems they have in place. The integration of digital technology not only gives us the ability to understand the current landscape but modify our practices to work more effectively and plan future growth.

Being digitally enabled also means that we can automate and augment processes which bring not only efficiencies but the opportunity and enhance our services and provide ‘added value’ to the business model which can help differentiate us from competitors.

Said Dr Micheli: “Automation in factories is nothing new. We have had robots for many years but what we now call ‘Industry 4.0’ is not just automation with robots but the fact that these robots can communicate with each other and optimise as they go along, allowing them to become part of the decision-making process, which is quite new.

“Automation is also allowing us to augment what we can do within organisations and with customers and that’s an interesting development. It’s not about removing the human but allowing them to interact with customers to provide an enhanced service which is customer-focused rather than process-led.”

In addition to the free downloadable guides, Dr Micheli appears in accompanying videos, which not only introduce the subject but provide practical examples of where they are being used across a range of sectors from transport and travel to banking and retail.

He cites Crown WFM customer Trailfinders among them, highlighting how the travel company have used workforce management as an ‘enabler’ not only to facilitate necessary workplace processes but to streamline them and allow staff to spend greater time in managing customer requirements.

To view the video accompanying the first guide on ‘The Rise of Digital Technology’ visit:

www.crownworkforcemanagement.com/videos/the-rise-of-technology/