Very few companies are prepared for an expected surge in automation over the next few years, with the use of artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics set to almost double by 2021.
A worldwide survey of businesses by Willis Towers Watson (WLTW) found that automation is expected to account for 22% of work in the next three years on average, compared with 12% today and 7% three years ago.
However, less than 7% of firms believe their HR functions are fully prepared for the changing requirements of digitalisation and a greater reliance on contingent talent rather than full-time employees.
“Companies clearly see work automation gaining momentum, with little signs of slowing down anytime soon,” WLTW talent and reward practice digital lead, George Zarkadakis, said.
“On one hand, the growing use of AI, robotics, free agent workers, contractors, consultants and part-time employees brings with it HR challenges that only few organisations are prepared to tackle.
“On the other hand, many companies recognise the need for breakthrough and innovative approaches — and are reinventing work and how talent and skills combine.”
The findings show that almost half of companies believe they will require fewer employees in the next three years as a result of automation, compared with 27% that say that is true today.
In addition, although just 19% say automation enables or requires them to use non-employee talent such as free agents, half expect that to be the case by 2021
Despite not being fully prepared for the imminent changes, 31% of companies have taken steps to address talent deficits through workforce planning and actions, and 32% have taken to action to identify the emerging skills required.
Half have began to deconstruct jobs and identify which tasks can be automated, 48% have looked at pathways for reskilling talent, while 27% have taken steps to enable careers based on a more agile organisation structure.
“In the face of rapidly changing work automation, companies will need to develop leaders and managers who can orchestrate a radically different work ecosystem while keeping all of the talent in their workplaces fully engaged,” Zarkadakis, added.
Upgrading technology is the number one priority for insurers around the world, according to survey of senior executives by software provider AdvantageGo.
21 May 2018
The insurance industry is increasingly struggling to find the right staff, with just one-quarter of workers in the sector prepared to use artificial intelligence (AI) systems.
16 May 2018
Financial services companies are the most likely to be targeted for privacy requests following the introduction General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) next month.
03 May 2018
Why InsurTech? A Pressured Insurance Value Chain
By Andrew Sagon, Andrew Johnston and Matthew Wong
InsurTech is a burgeoning phenomenon that is modernising the insurance industry. It is disrupting the traditional value chain whereby insurers offer loss protection, and shifting the emphasis to risk mitigation. Incumbents face disintermediation as investors in search of higher yields pour money into insurance-linked instruments in the capital markets. And entrepreneurial businesses are targeting friction costs and inefficiencies within every aspect of the traditional value chain.
Nimbleness and agility will unlock potential
By Elinor Friedman, Andrew Harley and Klayton Southwood
Recent Willis Towers Watson surveys in the U.S. have shown that P&C and life insurers in developed markets are taking seriously the potential of big data and predictive analytics to improve their businesses. Nimbleness and agility, rather than brute force, are likely to be key to realizing that potential.
Driven by technology, toolkits and talent
By Claudine Modlin and Graham Wright
Advanced analytics is helping some insurers offer innovative products and solutions. What do insurers need to know about the changing nature of analytics and whether it is worth the investment? Claudine Modlin and Graham Wright discuss technology, toolkits and talent — topics that may help you decide.
Risk transfer is part of a comprehensive solution
By Adeola Adele, Patrick Kulesa, Kevin Madigan and Alice Underwood
Given the dynamic nature of cyber-risk, taking a multidimensional approach that integrates board governance, technology solutions, behavioral change and risk transfer solutions can help reduce risk to a manageable level.