Nowadays, even though enterprises have myriad frameworks on AI & automation adoption, they underplay the most important cog in the wheel – employees. A top-down framework that develops the necessary skill sets, nurtures the right beliefs in the employees along with gamification might be the key to successful AI & automation adoption.
Enterprises deal with innumerable technologies to integrate and adopt robotic process automation, artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, etc. However, as per a McKinsey report , only 30% of change programs succeed. This report also highlights employee resistance that includes the fear of losing a job, and management attitude as the two primary reasons for the failure of such change initiatives.
Let us now consider IT service providers. Change and digital transformation have become the bread and butter of IT service providers. In today’s business scenario, in almost all cases, innovation and digital are the two most important parameters on which vendors are rated and evaluated.
However, keeping in mind the above study and considering the fear of flight because of automation & AI, it is imperative that C-Suites understand the operational and ground level expectations as well as challenges, and plan risk mitigation from the tools or processes that can obstruct the adoption of such automation solutions in the day-to-day workspace. To mitigate such risks, the traditional ITIL process of people, process & technology still works. However, in a VUCA - volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity - world, the focus is to balance it amongst the right set of people, processes & technology, though such a balance is difficult considering the nuances of this approach.
It is essential to ensure that employees & managers at the ground level start using AI and kick-start the culture of embracing and adopting AI. When employees see their leaders changing their behavior, they either consciously or subconsciously start mimicking them and this increases adoption.
Employees must be imparted training and equipped with the necessary skill sets to understand and use AI solutions. This helps in better acceptance as there is no fear of using them.
It is also imperative to effectively communicate the need for AI & automation. Employees tend to align better with the new ways of working (including working with bots), when they understand the requirements and the need for change. This leads to nurturing of the belief that AI solutions are deployed to supplement their efforts & make them more efficient. With proper communication, the risk and fear in the minds of employees fade away.
Gamification is an important cog in the wheel of adoption of AI as it helps to motivate engagement and participation. There are various ways of doing this and rewards & recognition play a major role in achieving this.
Investment in AI & automation will be a wasteful expenditure unless there is proper utilization. The long-term sustenance of any such initiative depends on the successful embracing & adoption of AI by employees.