Man v Machine: The Impact of Computers In The Workplace

“Don’t blame you,” said Marvin and counted five hundred and ninety-seven thousand million sheep before falling asleep again a second later.” ― Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

The advancements of computerisation, automation, AI and a robotic workforce promises to increase productivity and propel commercial ventures into the 21st Century.

Technology heralds the promise of an exciting and prosperous future – yet technological developments could come with crushing consequences.

How firms implement computerisation in offices, factories, shops and everywhere else is a precarious path. Bridges are burning and we have to cross them.

Decision makers are challenged with finding the right balance between human workers and man-made machines. The future model of the workplace has to be thought through with a vision befitting of a science-fiction writer.

Hopefully, we can figure out a happy ending.

Robot Risks

The emergence of sophisticated technologies and the growing adoption of automation, IoT and robotics across key industries will undoubtedly impact jobs.

Replacing people with technology could lead to record unemployment and a burgeoning consumer-base on low-growth incomes.

The most active buyers of technology firms today are private equity firms. It’s therefore important that fund managers don’t lose sight of the damaging consequences technology could have on society as a whole.

The Global Risks Perception Survey published by the World Economic Forum reveals business, political and academic leaders are broadly optimistic about the balance of risk and benefit of emerging technologies.

On the other hand, technology and up-skilling can lead to workforces that are more competent and better paid.

Managing the risk of technology goes beyond the workplace. The decisions around technology that companies make today will have a significant impact tomorrow. What will the future of your company look like – and how will your decision impact the future of societal structures?

 

James Orrick James Orrick holds a Masters in Corporate Governance from Bournemouth University, a BSc (Hons) in Accounting and Finance from the University of Essex, is a Fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants and the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators.

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