The top five benefits AI brings to telecoms and beyond
While we saw severe and widespread disruption in the wake of the pandemic, use of technology to evolve the way work is done within all industries, and telecommunications in particular, saw significant acceleration, says Jerry Wallis, head of Industry Strategy, EMEA at Blue Prism.
It is hardly surprising taking into account the fact that the telecom industry had the world counting on it. With COVID-19 came a sudden surge in bandwidth demands, and the need for professionals, including customer service workers, to work remotely when offices and call centres were closed.
These challenges have created a new of the role of human labour, with a recognition that operating models must become more receptive to change, while also remaining efficient. As the rollout of 5G networks continues and the world attempts to balance with its newfound hybridity, businesses must change their goals, from achieving mere digitalisation to be competitive, industry leaders with AI-driven networks – or risk falling behind their main competitors.
Maximising the potential of artificial intelligence (AI) has proven to be a substantial challenge across industries. However, the benefits of overcoming these barriers are too great to ignore. Robotic process automation (RPA) can pave the way for AI integration and make businesses more competitive in the process. With robust AI integration, businesses are better equipped to deal with consumer demands and compete at a pricing and innovative level.
Intelligence automation offers the latest in RPA and enables digital workers to assimilate advanced technologies like AI and machine learning into their work processes, assisting with advanced analytics and other cognitive demanding tasks. This combination of RPA and AI in intelligent automation presents many advantages and opportunities for enterprises across industries, extending far beyond the telco industry.
Here’s just five of the major benefits telecommunications can gain from the use of intelligent automation:
Increasing revenue generation while dropping costs
As businesses continue to expand, the volumes of data, and the need to use it to make better informed decisions and improve customer experience, will also continue to rise. The combination of recruitment, training, annual salary, national insurance, pension, office equipment and office space represents a huge cost for businesses. Therefore, companies need to focus on enabling their workforce to become more efficient and impactful and to minimise onboarding and staff costs.
Investing in digital workers gives employees the opportunity to focus on value-adding and revenue-generating tasks instead of cumbersome administrative work. Using automating business support systems and operating support systems and standardising processes with intelligence automation, reduces overheads and expenses.
Businesses can devote their resources to activities and tasks that contribute to growth and development rather than wasting them on processes that require minimal human attention with RPA.
Boosting creativity and innovation
As companies look to avoid the heavy costs involved when expanding the human workforce, it can be tempting to expand existing jobs to incorporate data entry and admin. Whilst this may not seem a burden when shared across numerous roles, it is important to remember that this low value work is time-consuming and can often distract people from higher value activity.
Creativity and innovation are essential for businesses to grow and compete effectively. However, staff that are encumbered with repetitive and mundane process-driven tasks often have little left to contribute to innovation. With intelligence automation, employees can focus on what they were hired to do, devoting their energy and time to product and service development and collaborative efforts. This enables businesses to remain competitive in a market that is continually evolving and being disrupted by new technologies. Now and in the future, the ability to adapt and innovate is and will continue to be integral to commercial success.
Maximising adaptability and maintaining optimal capacity
The pandemic highlighted the importance of agile and resilient operations across all industries. With a fully scalable digital workforce, businesses won’t be constrained by the limitations of traditional resourcing models, including employee absences, variations in productivity levels or restrictions in the movement of people, as we have seen during the pandemic.
Digital workers will continue to operate under all circumstances, maintaining basic services and customer experiences at all times regardless off employee circumstances.
With digital workers, businesses can be assured that they are adhering to regulatory compliance measures. Service providers can rely on digital workers to process and incorporate new requirements for customer engagement and market activities and to manage core processes in relation to customer confidentiality and privacy rules. As data privacy and security regulations are becoming increasingly stringent and the consequences of compliance failures more severe, ensuring compliance has never been more essential – or burdensome.
Promoting enhanced customer service and experience
Forward-thinking companies realise the role intelligent automation can have in improving the customer experience. Digital workers have proven to improve responsiveness, accuracy, and control across all operations, often resolving issues before they can impact customers. Employees can work with intelligent automation by using digital workers’ trends and behavioural analysis to feed into product development and service delivery, working together to continually optimise the customer experience.
By investing in the right technology, businesses can be proactive towards customer needs, through the personalisation of each and every customer interaction, whilst also predicting future customer behaviour. This ensures not only turned heads from those who are tired of mediocre customer service elsewhere, but also boosts retention levels.
As intelligent automation is increasingly taken up by communication service providers (CSPs), we will see enhanced customer experiences across every touchpoint of the customer journey.
Final thoughts looking forward
Intelligent automation is providing an unprecedented opportunity to transform the telecommunications industry. Scalable digital workers will play a key role in making businesses adaptable and efficient competitive innovators as their human workforce is able to prioritise complex and value-adding work. This will pave the way for offering new services to non-traditional market segments for emerging industries, including taking full advantage of new technologies like 5G and AI.
To keep up with advancements in the telecoms industry, businesses must evolve from the practices of overburdening or over sourcing workforces and use digital labour and supporting technologies as a means of sustainable growth and a source of competitive advantage.
The author is Jerry Wallis, head of Industry Strategy, EMEA at Blue Prism.