Hyperautomation: The Future of Work (Whether You Like it or Not)
Office Technology Tap
January 26, 2023
This week there is even more talk about artificial intelligence but a tremendous lack of discussion within our industry.
Is AI still evolving? An infant? Or worse, is AI just a fad?
More importantly, how can a copier dealer generate new or grow existing revenue, shrink costs, and increase profit with AI? Right now, nobody knows.
In light of all the hoopla around the latest AI app, it strikes me odd that the best way for an Office Technology provider to grow and prosper is to go back to the future and offer tried and true, Document Management. You remember scanning, archiving, and converting paper to . PDF, and moving data inside and outside the organization.
Document Management Workflow
Remote work has shown us the value and need for automation. The flexibility it offers is something employees hold dear, and as organizations strive to make their hybrid work models more efficient and effective, automation will be the key.
But there is more.
Just because remote work removed redundancy, streamlined processes, and accelerated digital transformation, as people return to the office, so will these new digital procedures. This means a greater demand for better automation and more technology around generating, moving, digesting, storing, and presenting information.
From content management to human resources, customer service, sales, marketing, and workflow management, automation helps your customers streamline processes, boost productivity and provide a better customer experience.
What should you be doing:
- Educate your team on the latest automation technologies, such as RPA and AI, and be able to advise customers on how these technologies can improve their document management and workflow processes.
- Offer training and support services to your customers to implement and optimize automation solutions in their hybrid work environments.
- Stay up to date on industry trends and regulations related to document management and workflow, in order to advise customers on how to comply with relevant laws and best practices.
Digital transformation (DX) is not just about getting rid of paper but also about taking advantage of the benefits that come with digital information, such as the automation of processes driven by that information, this is known as hyperautomation. Due to the acceleration of digital transformation brought on by COVID-19, businesses are now investing more in DX, which will lead to more interest in RPA(Robotic Process Automation) this year.
Additionally, businesses will prioritize enhanced security in the hybrid office setting by storing all documents in a centralized location and implementing access controls. Compliance with regulations will also be a major concern, with secure and auditable storage and access controls for sensitive documents.
Remote and hybrid working will also drive the need for increased mobility, allowing employees to access and collaborate on documents from any device with internet access. Version control features and electronic signature and workflow automation will streamline document collaboration and the approval process.
What you should be doing:
- Highlight the benefits of automating business processes and how it can improve productivity, efficiency, and compliance for customers.
- Offer solutions that support hyperautomation, such as RPA and other digital transformation tools, to help customers take advantage of the digital information they have.
- Provide training and support services to help customers implement and optimize these automation solutions in their organizations.
Toner, supplies, and recovery
Some of our OEMs weathered the storm better than others and may experience uphill challenges when trying to win back dealers. This is especially true for toner and supplies – many manufacturers are fighting more than ever through Covid, supply chain, remote office, and recessionary headwinds to maintain existing revenues
One company that has successfully navigated the supplies market is HP. Despite a decline in consumables revenue, the company has adapted its business model to maintain profitability. HP’s printing division has achieved impressive margins through the implementation of subscription services, such as Instant Ink, which currently boasts over 11 million users. The program has seen significant growth, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic. HP has 5,000 dealers selling HP supplies after slashing nearly 15,000 a few years ago.
Meanwhile, Clover is a company that has been facing revenue decline for years struggles. The company remains a dominant force in the remanufactured cartridges market in North America. But as the economy approaches the new “center,” it will be interesting to see if Clover decides to pivot or slug it out. Time reveals all.
What you should be doing:
- Start offering subscription-based services, similar to HP’s Instant Ink program, in order to maintain profitability in the toner and supplies market.
- Partner with your current manufacturers that have adapted their business models successfully, such as HP, to sell their supplies and benefit from their established customer base.
- Again, stay informed about market trends and shifts, and be prepared to pivot or adapt their strategies accordingly in order to maintain revenue. This may include diversifying the products and services they offer, or shifting focus to different market segments.
Have a great week!
Automating the Hybrid Office Frees Our Potential for More
The Great Resignation in which people quit their jobs due to the flexibility of remote work during the pandemic has created a renewed need and appreciation for automation.
Automation in the workplace can lead to job satisfaction and a positive shift in the remote and hybrid work mindset. Automating areas such as content management and human resources can make hybrid work better, as AI can be used to recognize keywords or images in documents, generate metadata for documents, automate workflows, and supplement the recruiting and hiring process.
Read more, here.
2023 will bring technological advancements to help dealers thrive, including hyperautomation which is the idea that anything that can and should be automated, will be automated. Sales teams will also start using OpenAI ChatGPT to do everything from creating the perfect sales script for every occasion to providing higher levels of help and support on demand.
Additionally, businesses will need technology that fits into the new office model and will rely on solutions that create immersive and equitable meeting experiences and enhance distributed collaborative processes.
Read more, here.
Microsoft is expanding access to its AI toolkit, including ChatGPT
Microsoft announced the general availability of Azure OpenAI Service, which has been available to a handful of customers since it was first teased in 2021.
This service allows many businesses to access some of the most advanced AI models in the world created by American research lab OpenAI, including GPT-3.5, a dialogue-based chatbot whose full form extends to Generative Pre-trained Transformer, Codex, which turns natural language into code, and DALL•E 2 which can create realistic images and art from a description in natural language.
Microsoft plans to add OpenAI’s tools to everyday apps like PowerPoint, Outlook, and other apps, wherein customers will be able to automatically generate text using simple prompts.
Read it, here.
Digitization will continue to pressure print volumes
In 2023, the print industry will remain vulnerable to economic uncertainty, the energy crisis, and supply chain disruption.
The Great Resignation is turning into the Great Layoff, creating a further shift in employer and employee dynamics. Although remote and hybrid working will not disappear, 2023 may see a wider return to the office, which could help improve print volume recovery.
However, customer behavior is changing, which is accelerating print and digital convergence. Industry players must adapt their product and service offerings to drive relevance in a rapidly changing technology landscape.
Read more, here.
The IRC – Internet Relay Chat
- The State of the Technology Ecosystem
- What Does 2023 Hold In Store For Digital Transformation?
- The More You Know: Converting 2022’s Lessons into Executable Plans
- Clover Imaging layoffs and shuts down in Michigan.
- OpenAI Pilots Premium Version of ChatGPT, Offering Increased Message Limits and No Throttling or Blackout Windows
- Amazon laying off more than 18,000
- The gaming world runs on the same tech as the office. Check out The Gaming Tap, here.