This is part two of Tammy Browning’s thoughts on how corporations can address some of the most significant issues in 2024. Take a moment to also read part 1 on mental health and wellness and part 3 covering skills-based hiring.
AI and automation.
It’s said that generative AI and automation won’t replace workers, but people who can effectively use AI will replace those who can’t. AI and automation tools can improve efficiency and productivity in almost every area of business. According to the World Economic Forum, upskilling workers to effectively utilize AI is the top priority for companies worldwide. But understanding its limitations, and realizing where human creativity and innovation are still needed, will be required moving forward.
We’re seeing AI grow at a pace we couldn’t contemplate just six months ago. In January 2023 most corporations didn’t have an AI steering committee. I can assure you that every major company does now. They’re busy trying to figure out how to infuse the benefits of AI into the company while keeping their employees in mind.
Take stock to move forward.
This light-speed technology can be frightening for organizations and employees. But it doesn’t have to be intimidating with the right approach:
- First, start with some perspective. Take stock of all the ways your people are already using AI such as Grammarly, photo editing software, and even navigation apps. When you consider the current uses, and realize how well you’re handling it now, the tech is less scary.
- Promote communication so staff understands how AI can make their job better. Automation tools will relieve the burden of rote tasks, making human work more fulfilling and engaging so people can put energy into strategy, creative activities, and innovation. Of automation users, 89% report being more satisfied with their job due to automation in the workplace. That’s a win for all!
- Put governance around your AI—knowing there are rules and regulations can help you adopt the technology but avoid negative consequences. For example, at Kelly, we need to be especially mindful of relying on AI during the recruiting process and stay on top of current or pending legislation governing those practices.
- Make an investment in people. Much like businesses invested in training and certifying staff when IT was in its infancy, smart corporations will need to invest in AI training. Take the time and make the effort to look far out into the future to determine skills trends and proactively help your talent build those skills.
As roles are displaced—and some will certainly be displaced—reach out and work with your people to plan how they will react. Encourage employees to become forward-thinking visionaries rather than tacticians. People who foster their entrepreneurial spirit and follow their passions will always create their own path.
At KellyOCG, we not only embrace AI and automation, but also reap the benefits. We’re putting it to use in our MSP and RPO solutions to make them more powerful, freeing our people to be more consultative and creative. It’s already making us and our workforce solutions better, faster, and stronger.