Over the last 2 decades, a plethora of white collar automation jobs is outsourced to machines, from assembling car parts to offering impeccable customer services. With computers using artificial intelligence, there are many information jobs that were otherwise invulnerable have turned vulnerable to these new and disruptive technologies.
What is White Collar Automation?
Robotics, Artificial Intelligence and Machine learning are the upcoming technologies that are taking the world by storm, though it is in the pilot stage for doing white collar tasks. These technologies are reducing human efforts and time in making various kinds of tasks. Moreover, these technologies are widely used in medicine, agriculture, manufacturing, IT and various other industries to cut down the labour and time. The bitter fact that has to be assimilated by everyone with the evolving of this disruptive white collar automation technology is the loss of jobs. There are many companies who are adapting to these evolving technologies are downsizing their teams. Many blue collar jobs are at stake with this technology coming into force. Though the current robotics cannot compete with the white collar employees, but soon there are high odds of it taking over the white collar jobs. These technologies are challenging the white-collar professions, which are found to be safe earlier, are called as white collar automation.
This white collar automation is accepted widely with a smile by the employers globally as it is totally curtailing the time that is taken for humans to do the work processes. Humans who are spending ample time on monotonous task can spend that valuable time on some other tasks that would add a lot of value to the organization. However, the fever of automation is not observed in all industrial sectors, but has a huge impact on financial services, legal services and healthcare industry. This is transforming the way manufacturing and other industries are functioning, thus resulting in fewer jobs governed by white collar law.
Working on White Collar Automation –
Various tasks such as data entry, generating financial documents or handling customer requests are completely done by robotics today. Moreover, the tedious and repetitive jobs that are otherwise time consuming are completed with high accuracy using the advanced technology. These technologies are totally changing the way people work in official ecosystem. The brickbat of automation is that, people who do not upgrade their skills are losing jobs, whereas the bouquet is that, this is reducing the boring tasks that actually take ample time of humans to complete besides keeping white collar crime at bay.
Be it a marketing service or financial service, the breeze of automation has touched every sector. Few of them include:
- Marketing: Algorithms are widely used to identify the content that is engaging the website visitors
- Financial services: Automated techniques are used to access the financial data in the organizations
- Customer Support centers: Collect data, entry of data, process thousands of documents, and answer customer queries.
Soon automation will take over all the white collar jobs. Moreover, the skill set that is expected by the employers would be totally different generating white collar recruitment. Though, the result would be bad or good, but this would improve the quality of life of people.
White Collar Automation in Healthcare –
There are many healthcare companies who are applying automation to cut down cost and improve efficiency. Various healthcare applications including handling invoice, reducing bad debts, and processing claims are improving the patient experience. The Artificial Intelligence is playing a vital role in automating the healthcare processes. Few of the white collar jobs that are automated include:
- Handling invoice and exceptions
- Predict and manage bad debts
- Ensure that the healthcare organizations would process the claims in an effective manner
- Improve the patient experience moving from system to system and department to department
However, to carry out the above tasks one should have machine learning applications that would help to make informed judgments based on historical data. In addition to this, there is invoice management, which would read and learn about the content and image of the invoice. This would process invoices by hundreds of customers in a short period of time. There is another instance to quote of how AI is working in healthcare. When a patient is admitted in the hospital, the Artificial intelligence will have a glance over the data of the customer capacity to pay and compare this information with the other similar profiles of patients that the hospital has treated. The AI application would take the help of hospitals to find the sources that can fund the patient. This is win-win for hospitals and patients as patients can get rid of bad debts, whereas hospitals can improve patient experience. Benefits of white collar automation in healthcare include:
- Save labour: The tasks that are carried out manually are done better using tools. Though, the hospitals or healthcare industries do not need to downsize the staff but can put them into more efficient roles.
- Increase throughput: The nurse equipped with automation tools can handle more patients at a time. With the increase or decrease in the headcount of patients, automation platform has the flexibility to scale up and down to these changes.
White Collar Jobs that are Taken Over by Automation –
Four professional white collar jobs that are taken over by computers, robots and Artificial Intelligence are:
- Financial and Sports reporters: The job of journalists is to interview people and gather information and then put this information together to prepare an article. This job is at stake when the machine can read the information. The software available in the market is helping to create the financial reports automatically.
- Online marketers: Today, humans are not involved to craft a message and shoot a marketing email to customers and compel them to make purchase decisions. The software available in the market is able to identify the subject lines that are giving a huge response. The machine generated emails have high email open rate compared to the emails written by humans.
- Anesthesiologists, Surgeons, and Diagnosticians: Everyone thinks that doctors only have hands-on experience. However, the applications available can give low-level anaesthesia to patients like a professional Anesthesiologist. Robotics is used to remove tumours and carry out hair transplants.
- Law firms: Reviewing millions of law documents is challenging. The systems available would pull out the relevant lawsuits with keyword recognition. The software available in the market is able to predict the outcome of the cases analyzing the past court rulings and arguments.
Advantages and Drawback of White Collar Automation-
Mitigate white collar crime: White collar crime is committed by the businesses and bureaucrats for monetary benefits. These people are called white collar criminals. Few of the white collar crimes include tax evasion, cybercrime, bribery, fraud, insider trading, insurance fraud, money laundering, embezzlement, etc. By automating the jobs of white collar professionals, the crimes can be controlled along with stringent white collar crime law.
Generate new jobs: As there are many concerns raised by white-collar professionals that their jobs are lost to machines, but there are many new collar jobs generated. All the people have to do is to update their skills and stay on par with the latest technological advancements. No matter how much the automation is done by the companies, still every company has to download software, maintain their database and program the software. These are all handled only by humans.
Strategies are prepared by humans: Though, the data is to be gathered by computers but is it humans who have to eventually come up with the strategy.
Reduce monotonous or repetitive tasks: Automation replaces the repetitive and redundant tasks that are done by humans. This helps humans to focus on much more creative and strategic tasks rather than wasting time in doing some monotonous jobs.
Increase safety of employees: People who are working in an unsafe and risky environment are prone to workplace accidents. However, by using automation tools, employees can work safely without getting hurt. The automated robots will reduce human job in the areas where there are risks.
Lose jobs: The biggest concern of automation is the shrinking of jobs with the usage of robots in industries.
Increase ethical issues: In a plentiful of surveys, it was revealed that ethical issues would increase due to automation while decreasing the job satisfaction.
Face barriers to get trained on new skill set: As and when a new technology hits the market, it is the job of employees to upgrade their skills to survive in their respective jobs. Due to the reduction in company-sponsored training, it becomes challenging for employees to acquire new skills.
Though automation takes over the jobs, it regenerates new jobs. It is the sheer responsibility of companies to take conscious decisions in creating a workplace where both humans and machines work together.