Soon a robot that sounds like a human will help reset your computer password

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By: Sakthi Prasad --

23 March, 2014

Soon a robot that sounds like a human will help reset your computer password
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No, we aren't referring to HAL 9000 - the menacing fictional character in Arthur C. Clarke's "2001: Space Odyssey" that was in turn immortalised on silver screen by Stanley Kubrick.

Instead we are looking at how robots can affect the IT services landscape.

Let's cut to chase. IT helpdesk services, which are typically manned by hundreds of trained workers, are ubiquitous in all organizations. Typical distress calls to a helpdesk would range from malfunctioning printers to a user's inability to access a PC. Hundreds of man hours are spent solving these teething issues day-in and day-out. And mostly support is given via phones.

How will the world look like if such services are automated, completely removing the need for human intervention? Or to be more precise, does it make sense to employ robots to help reset an employee's mailbox password?

How will Robotic Automation, a process dubbed by experts as a "disruptive technology," affect IT services procurement? Can such technological leap come in handy for category managers looking to save money as well as manpower resource?

Say for example a company is looking to open a call centre in Russia with the aim of serving its local customers. This would involve hiring a local service provider or setting up one's own captive centre. In both cases there are several business risks involved.

Instead of going through the rigmarole of setting up a new call centre, wouldn't the IT procurement manager be happy if she/he is given an option of robots that are capable of handling such customer calls at a reduced cost?

Wouldn't she/he be even more delighted in learning that those robotic computers could be installed, say, in the company's own premises - even in the parking lot for instance?

Such high-level automation is set to change the IT services landscape in the coming years. Healthcare, Financial Services and Networking industries are some of the early adopters of this technology, who have begun to reap the benefits.

On an average one robot can replace 4 humans. This would obviously impact the job scene in IT services landscape, which has traditionally been a labor intensive industry. Only time will tell how the man-machine balance would eventually be achieved; but that is not our immediate focus.

Rather, what is now important for category managers is to look at immediate challenges surrounding this fledgling technology:

 

  • What are the benefits from automating IT service operations? What are the real life cases and applications?
  • Which IT service categories are currently automated and to what degree?
  • What is the positioning of this technology in the IT services value chain and what is its value proposition to procurement managers?
  • What are the implementation challenges this technology would face?

To watch the webinar on the same topic, please click on the following link: http://beroeinc.co/Ohfeyt

P.S. Needless to say it would indeed be Beroe analysts who will be hosting the webinar and not HAL 9000's clone!