TALKS about robots replacing human beings in the workplaces are a rage these days, amid concern over the rise of technological unemployment caused by advances in artificial intelligence (AI).
In reality, robots powered by AI may not be taking over from people anytime soon. However, the machines are capable of taking up a significant percentage of jobs, beginning with the most advanced economies where technology play a significant role.
According to a 2017 report on automation in the workplace by PricewaterhouseCoopers, as many as 30% of total jobs in the UK, 38% in the US, 35% of jobs in Germany, and 21% in Japan are at risk of being replaced by machine-based automation by the early 2030s.
Back in Malaysia, Accendo HR Consulting, which is at the forefront of this digitisation of human resource management, believes that machines won’t be replacing most people, but they will augment those workers, helping them to work better.
Chief executive officer Sharma Lachu says while all information and many functions today are either digital, has been digitised, or could be digitised, AI and automation are meant to make people better at their jobs, allowing humans to focus on the things that they have been especially good at.
In other words, employing a blended approach where AI could be used in helping to automate essential HR related administrative processes, such as onboarding, measuring performance and offering personalised curated learning content.
Companies in turn can refocus their human capital talents on strategic workplace initiatives and contributing to real business value.
Leveraging on both local and international talents, the Accendo team adds scientific rigour to its solutions. Its in-house programmers are able to develop technology for customised process and it has a team of consultants to engage with clients.
Its ultimate goal is to widen the use of data science in Malaysia to elevate how people are managed and how work is done here in Malaysia.
Sharma stresses that once we truly comprehend that people are the nucleus of work, data science solutions can be built to help complement and change the way businesses function and succeed.
But a real-life, face-to- face interaction is still necessary, especially when it comes to measuring the finer points in characteristics and assessing candidates for a more senior position or for critical roles, he adds.
Looking back at how past industrial revolutions have changed the world, Sharma believes that this whole notion of digital, AI and data science, collectively known as Industrial Revolution 4.0, will do the same in changing the way people live and work.
“The sooner Malaysia embraces this and allow us to complement their businesses with data science, the sooner we, as a country, will be able to reap the benefits,” he says.