McKinsey and Company recently compiled a list of trends that shed some light on what successful businesses need to do to be prepared for the next decade. Unsurprisingly, automation sat squarely in the middle of it, and businesses that want to compete within their industry will need to adapt moving forward.
Automation in a white-collar office?
You may be thinking, how can a white-collar office become any more automated than it already is? Computers have replaced pencils and papers, while long algorithms have done away with human interaction for a large number of methods and procedures.
M&C wrote in their report, “Now advances in data analytics, low-cost computer power, machine learning, and interfaces that “understand” humans are moving the automation frontier rapidly toward the world’s more than 200 million knowledge workers.”
Essentially, practices that were thought to be reserved for people because of the element of human interaction are now being transformed into something a robot or program can do. In the case of a white-collar office, automation will completely transform employee onboarding over the next 5 to 10 years, removing the need for a position dedicated to training them.
What does this mean for the average office?
It’s apparent that onboarding will be moving to an automated process, but what form will it take? Robots would be pricey to buy, and they wouldn’t have the artificial intelligence to field tough, niche questions. Pure algorithms wouldn’t make any sense and therefore would be coupled with robotic technology, but at that point it may be more costly than the original practice of human-to-human interaction.
Videos are a relatively affordable way of digitizing information so it can be automatically retrieved. They will standardize the onboarding process, and revolutionize how internal communications are perceived. Oddly enough, the human aspect of internal communications is becoming automated at a rather quick pace, as it is more efficient to do so, and allows employees to peruse topics – whether they be training, news announcements or meet-and-greets – at their leisure.
“Videos can automate employee onboarding.”
What does this mean for businesses? A massive increase in bandwidth being moved around the WAN. Even if your business bought its network just five years ago, chances are likely it won’t be able to handle the digital revolution. Companies that try to make the switch to automation will find it can cripple internal operations and bring even menial tasks like sending emails to a halt.
In steps the software-defined enterprise content delivery network, which lessens the strain put on a company’s legacy network by rerouting bandwidth usage from videos away from the network. In essence, an SD-ECDN will allow companies to completely automate practices by digitizing them in video. Then, employees will be able to access them at any time, day or night.
A normal infrastructure wouldn’t be able to handle the constant downloading of video – especially simultaneously. An SD-ECDN can cache videos internally after they’ve been downloaded and watched once. Meaning, once its been watched, it won’t take up additional resources to watch it again. The alternative? Using bandwidth over and over again for one video.
Automation is drawing near, and white-collar offices aren’t free from its grasp. It has the power to alleviate budget issues by removing non-essential parts of a company. Training is an outdated practice that will still be revered in blue collar environments, but offices are different. The work is mostly the same, but the policies and procedures differ. This slight discrepancy allows video to step in and digitize the process, thereby alleviating the need for long, drawn out conferences. Employees will soon be able to learn at their own pace, and SD-ECDNs will be making it happen.