Near-future Technologies Will Transform What We Do, How We Do It And Even What We Are: Dr Raul V Rodriguez, Dean, School of Business - Woxsen University
In an exclusive interaction with BW Education, Dr Raul V Rodriguez, Dean, School of Business - Woxsen University, Hyderabad, talks about the institution and more.
By 2024, artificial intelligence (AI) and emerging technologies such as virtual personal assistants and chatbots will replace almost 69 per cent of the manager's workload, predicts research and advisory firm Gartner, Inc.
Dr Raul V Rodriguez, Dean, School of Business - Woxsen University, Hyderabad, throws light on the role of the emerging technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML) in post-covid industry revival. Dr Raul is a registered expert in Artificial intelligence, Intelligent Systems, Multi-agent Systems at the European Commission and a nominee for the Forbes 30 Under 30 Europe 2020 list. Excerpts from the interview:
An unusual but a trending application of AI is in the field of HR - a department present across industries. What impact does machine learning have in a field such as Human Resources?
Well, the current use of Machine Learning is related to the ability of machines to discover talent in human beings, beyond their hard and verifiable competencies, such as their level of education, and tracking their performance and daily behaviour.
Software intelligence is transforming human resources. At the moment, its main focus has been placed on recruitment processes, which in most cases are very expensive and inefficient. A first example would be the development of technology that would allow people to create job descriptions that are gender-neutral to attract the best possible candidates, whether male or female. This would boost a group of job seekers and a more balanced population of employees.
A second example is the training recommendations that employees could receive. On several occasions, these employees have a large umbrella of training options at their disposal, but they cannot find what is most relevant to them. Therefore, these algorithms present the internal and external courses that best suit the employee's development objectives based on certain variables, including the skills that the employee intends to develop and the courses taken by other employees with similar professional objectives.
A third example could be Sentiment Analysis, which is a form of NLP (Natural Language Processing) that analyzes the social conversations generated on the Internet to identify opinions and extract the emotions.
Lastly, we should mention the monitoring of employee attrition, through which we can predict which employees will remain in the company and which ones will not, based on several parameters such distance between home and workplace, number of years spent in the organization, performance, general satisfaction and more.
What would you say to companies that are still reluctant to implement emerging technologies into their daily tasks?
As Charles Darwin would have said – Survival of the fittest. Companies need to understand that the only choice right now is to choose whether to adapt or perish. The post-COVID-19 world is going to be extremely tech-oriented, hence relying on Big Data and advanced AI algorithms is the key to the companies’ future development. Those who were sceptical earlier, do not really have much of a choice other than becoming tech-savvy before the competition does the needful.
In some of the conferences you have presented at, you mention the sentence “Treat Employees Like Customers or AI will do it for you”. Could you elaborate on this thought-provoking statement?
I think this quote by Sir Richard Branson speaks for itself: "Clients do not come first. Employees come first. If you take care of your employees, they will take care of the clients." The truth is that most companies do not care about their employees as individuals but numbers. They are on their payroll and that’s pretty much where their relationship begins and ends. Companies need to understand they are not doing a favour to their employees by employing them. They are paying a certain remuneration for the years they took to achieve certain milestones, obtain some particular skill set, and their tenure in the company. More often than not, a client seems to be the king. But without committed and satisfied employees, a client may not have a good experience with your brand.
What should be an organisation looking at to effectively engage the manpower and overall boost their performance, in the age of artificial intelligence?
Well, companies should consider a full-fledged AI implementation, company-wide, where AI-induced talent acquisition & recruitment, facial & voice emotion recognition, email tracking, behavioural analysis and appraisal or attrition will be present on 24/7 basis. This would ultimately increase profitability and accuracy of services while tackling difficult scenarios such as employee’s distress and anxiety.
How does Woxsen University (WoU) help students see reality through the lens of Emerging Technologies?
Universities must prepare for a technology-enabled future. Recent advancements in Educational Technology (Ed-Tech) are nothing short of amazing. The developments that have emerged in this field are empowering educators to create remarkable learning experiences for today’s young minds. The potential of emerging technologies such as data science, artificial intelligence and machine learning is outstanding. The power to transform the supply chain, customer engagement and product/service design is ever-growing. Every sector is being impacted by this disruptive technology which has become a constant trend.
Harnessing its potential for the modern world requires a new set of professional skills. The new reality of the business world is driven by individuals with techno-commercial skills, with expertise to apply it to organizational needs and strategies while navigating the ethical, psychological and societal implications.
Hence, Woxsen University offers a range of career programs from BBA to PhD, with focused specializations in Business Analytics, Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning. The programs have been diligently designed to equip students with knowledge and skills in Business Science & Management, that dramatically enhance their ability to make informed decisions of high quality, by making most optimal use of emerging technology.
A corporate manager empowered with these decision-making tools is able to take advantage of the massive amounts of data capturing the preferences and habits of millions of customers and make decisions which would radically improve the effectiveness of managerial actions.
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