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Digitization Revolutionizing the Modern Office Hiring workers to perform various kinds of office tasks efficiently is the prime concern in every organization. Businesses invest heavily in recruiting and finding the right talent is often a tiresome task. But things seem to be changing with digitization. The past few years have seen a new breed of digitized employees or ‘robots’ offering back office support for various kinds of activities. These robots don’t take up space in the office and type on the keyboard, but are embedded in software and have the ability to read screens, write administrative programs, communicate with others, and perform various tasks with the same technologies their human counterparts use. Digital labor could be on its way to drive the third industrial revolution, say industry pundits. According to a recent study from the Oxford Martin Programme on the Impacts of Future Technology by Dr. Carl Benedikt Frey (Oxford Martin School) and Dr. Michael A. Osborne (Department of Engineering Science, University of Oxford), around 47 percent of US jobs are risk due to computerization over the next decade or two.

Advantages of Automated Office Processes 

Quality and Reliability – As an automated system/services uses effective algorithms and technologies, they are more reliable than human labor. For example, the oncologists at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York use IBM’s Watson computer to provider cancer treatment diagnosis and care. With 600,000 medical evidence reports, 1.5 million patient records and clinical trials, and two million pages of text from medical journals for benchmarking and pattern recognition purposes, this computer allows the oncologists to compare each patient’s symptoms, medication history and others details to diagnose and thereby devise a treatment plan that has high probability of success. Advanced medical billing software can manage the billing and collection tasks of a healthcare organization efficiently.

Efficiency – Routine or repetitive tasks (for example, data entry, creation of user ID and passwords, account review and maintenance, issuing purchasing order) which do not require judgment are major components of a business

project. Automated systems can replace human labor in these repetitive tasks as they can perform the work faster and generate greater intensity of routine inputs. which in turn, can increase productivity. For example, with automated document indexing, it is possible to extract data from the scanned documents automatically and export it to separate folders for each type of document. This helps healthcare organizations manage their crucial healthcare documents easily. As there is no need for software programming skills to operate robots, users can access and control the automation while they work, as opposed to requiring IT specialists and dedicated programmers. Certain non-routine tasks are also automated today, as for instance, the autonomous or driverless car that top automakers and technology companies (Google) are out to develop. 

Cost-Effectiveness – It is estimated that employing a robot will cost approximately 1/3 of the cost of a human (globally sourced). According to a HFS Research report, an on-shore IT worker may cost $80,000 a year and an off-shore one may cost $30,000. But with use of a robot (Blue Prism), this cost can be reduced to around $15,000 a year. The business outsourcing analysts at Horses for Sources (HFS) say that robots are biggest threats to traditional low-cost business process outsourcing.

With automated systems, companies can also perform jobs which humans shirk. How to Make Digitization a Winning Strategy Businesses can make digitization their winning strategy by identifying highly rulesdrive processes, finding business units that can operate bulk administration tasks and reconsidering every outsourcing and offshoring decision. However, advanced digitization is a thing of the future. Outsourcing can help you leverage the benefits of both digitization and human skill. Experienced BPO companies offer automated solutions, professional equipment and facilities, and tried and tested workflows. But, there are some things to keep in mind while choosing an external digitization service provider: 

Prepare clear contracts that specify timeframes, costs and expectations correctly

Ask the chosen service provider to give you the samples of work done and lists of previous clients. Contact these clients and enquire about their experiences with this company.

Clearly specify what is to be digitized, the range and type of material at the outset so as to avoid the situation in which final cost would become higher than the original estimate.

Make sure that the company has security measures to keep your data safe.

In the final analysis, make sure your organization aims at quality, efficiency, optimization and continual improvement and remember that achieving these goals are impossible without humans.

Digitization Revolutionizing the Modern Office