Are you prepared for life in a post-digital world?
Don’t worry, it’s not a technology apocalypse. But it is a change that will reshape the workforce forever.
The 2019 Accenture Technology Vision makes clear that we are looking at a new world where the ubiquity of digitalization has leveled the playing field. That means organizations must now find innovative ways to leverage technology for differentiation and advantage. One way is to create more opportunities for today’s digitally adept worker—the Human+ Worker—to thrive and generate competitive advantage for your business.
The Human+ Worker is someone for whom technology is an integral, intelligent assistant, making human work more efficient, more valuable and more rewarding. The Accenture Google Cloud Business Group (AGBG)—our unified team that brings together Accenture industry expertise and Google Cloud products—is helping our clients transform their businesses for a Human+ workforce. Combining Google edge, AI, computer vision, and IoT technology with Accenture industry expertise, we’re transforming worker and customer experiences, unlocking new revenue streams, optimizing core operations, and supercharging innovation.
Imagine if you could see, react and even predict events in near-real time without pressing a button. It’s possible using thousands or millions of intelligent edge devices (sensors, cameras, drones, vehicles, ro(co)bots, etc.) to gather and analyze high-frequency data from assets and workers, and then take actions on their own. It reduces human error, unexpected worker safety hazards, equipment failures and product defects. Meanwhile, the human role is elevated to strategic decision-making, exception handling, innovating—a higher value.
So let’s take a look at some real-world possibilities for this new kind of worker.
Empowering the workforce of the future
A major boon for the Human+ Worker is in team collaboration with Google Cloud’s G Suite at the core. No longer do you need a lot of coordination and set up to have interactive experiences. Everything is connected, all the time. Documents, calendars, spreadsheets, presentations, email, chat, voice, video—are all active whenever you want, continuously saved and secured, accessible and editable from any device by one person or many simultaneously, and organized for you. No more folders, everything is searchable. No more sharing documents through email—just @ someone and they’re connected and part of the team. Need to talk it through? Do like Google: Put a Chromebox in every office and turn your online collaboration into a live face-to-face meeting in a click.
Virtual assistants with real impact
We are leveraging Google Assistant to create virtual assistants for human resources (HR) applications running on Google Cloud Platform (GCP). The idea is to save employees time and provide them with a more personalized HR experience for answering questions around payroll, personal leave, and other company services and benefits. For example, an employee with a smartphone could simply say, “Hey Google, how much vacation time do I have left?” That simple. It’s a Human+ experience far more advanced than an FAQ chatbot that links employees to generic policy text. Another example: We helped a global telco use virtual assistants to help its agents improve the customer experience. By using AI-powered virtual assistants, agents are free to focus on more complex cases, increasing the customer satisfaction rate by 3X.
Quality testing without food or sleep
This is a great example of how Accenture expertise combined with Google technologies like Google Cloud IoT Core and Cloud Edge Tensor Processing Unit (TPU)—a machine learning (ML) microchip—bring Human+ capabilities into the life sciences laboratory. Accenture developed an autonomous cobot solution—AI Visual Inspection—to analyze bacteria samples using a robotic arm to pick up petri dishes, place them under an Edge TPU-connected camera where ML models analyze the sample within milliseconds, and then instruct the robotic arm to place the sample into a designated bin. This inspection goes on night and day, only requiring the technician to review a few specific samples identified for human inspection. This reduces inspection time and defects, lowers testing costs, improves product quality and most importantly, frees up time for the technician to work on higher-value tasks.
A watchful eye on safety that never blinks
Spotting unsafe conditions in the workplace is a daunting task for human inspectors. Certain dangerous conditions may not be recognized quickly enough to take action and prevent injuries. To help our clients address this challenge, AGBG developed the Worker Safety Monitoring solution. Tapping into our vast industry expertise and the deep learning AI capabilities of Edge TPU, the Worker Safety Monitoring solution is always watching, never blinking, tracking worker activities and location in real time. Inspectors are notified almost instantly of violations and potentially unsafe activities. As a result, we are empowering Human+ Workers to create safer work environments, reduce monitoring costs and improve the quality of services.
Large or small we see them all
Inventory errors and out-of-stock conditions wreak havoc on any supply chain. They could directly affect sales, profits and worker experience. Accenture built a smart Human+ Worker solution to solve this problem. Our AI and IoT-driven visual inspection solution is built using Google TensorFlow Lite—a framework for deploying AI models on mobile and IoT devices—and Google Cloud ML Engine, along with inventory management applications running on GCP. Now, the shelves have eyes—and intelligence—to spot inventory issues large or small, and alert workers before they turn into business problems. The result is greater operational efficiency and a more positive worker experience.
Today’s workers are empowered by technology like never before. It’s enabling them to perform traditional roles in new ways, and adapt fluidly to new roles that didn’t even exist a few years ago. How businesses leverage the empowered capabilities of the Human+ Worker could very well determine the winners from the losers in the post-digital age.
Where will your business stand as these changes unfold? Ask Accenture. We’ll bring our insights and expertise to the table, and help you leverage a Human+ workforce to return greater value from your technology investments.
To view other Tech Vision 2019 trends with Google Cloud:
Learn how we are helping to better understand the real-time “Market of One” here.
Learn how we are using DARQ power to lead the way here.