How to manage an AI workforce | HRD Canada – Human Resources Director

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Traditional management techniques aimed at directing and controlling an organisation towards its operating goals and targets may no longer be appropriate in a faster changing world. As artificial intelligence (AI), and even robots, emerge it may no longer be possible for management to work through the process of written structures, processes and delegations each time the organisation needs to adapt to new changes. The new age of change is hard to predict, fast paced due to the interconnectivity from globalisation and social media, so resulting in greater risk and uncertainty be the change occurring from presidential tweets, new online markets, technology or trade wars. AI, as one of these changes, is emerging across a range of industries due to faster computer hardware, software advancement and new algorithms.

New management challenges
AI has already emerged in social media and marketing, where it can already propose useful or interesting information and advertisements for potential customers. Further advancement in AI will be more than just speed, as it will soon likely learn from experience and create new solutions to problems that were previously unthought of by humans. So AI will soon be more than merely a tool to replace human work that involves mundane and repetitive tasks, it is likely to advance with capabilities well beyond the human capability, over time. New emerging technologies may soon enhance AI, where it is already apparent that the new 5G will have immensely faster communication speeds that enable location accuracy and other features. With the advancing technology it is already possible to imagine driverless cars, drone deliveries and facial recognition for use in a few short years. The emerging AI may also be the base for robots, where they will be able to perform human physical work rather than merely human thought.

AI may soon emerge with lower costs, productivity and efficiency, yet there are potential issues that arise for the manager of the future.  As AI is adopted, the manager of the future will have to integrate work between humans and AI, yet ensure that the job losses and changes do not affect the broader organisational targets. Despite the faster and superior logic, AI solutions may be poor at empathy, ethics and social consciousness. It is possible that optimized solutions of the AI may be sub-optimal in terms of society, staff or customer. It is possible that, without other skills, AI solutions could potentially improve productivity or profits and yet come at the expense of the poor, disadvantaged or even harm society more broadly. Management overview of AI may be required to monitor and override AI advances if their solutions potentially harm staff, society or organisational value.

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