What are we going to do when machines do everything?
American Express was born in 1850 as a transport company in what was known as Diligence. As the user experience offered them data to understand the needs of a growing market, they decided to become a company that offered travelers checks. Much later, when the first credit card was created by Diners Club , they understood the enormous opportunity that was offered to them in the financial sector. In fact, somehow, they have not stopped selling the same thing, but with different points of contact with the customer. Now they’re starting a very interesting career towards the offer of services linked to Artificial Intelligence.
The gladiator’s company has not done anything that cannot be done by any other company, big or small, with more or less difficulty. Adapting to changing times, but from the management of the existing technology and the knowledge of the needs of the contemporary client. Interestingly, many companies that now sell specific products could well result in the offer of tremendously revolutionary services. My job consists in that, in locating new business models, to innovate from the digital transformation, in all kinds of companies that decide to face the disruption from within. For that reason, you are going to let me, on the list that I highlight below that arises from the book published by the group Cognizant ‘When Machines Do Everything’, formulate a game about the generation of new business models, jobs or types of companies, including bordering science fiction, in order to see how far we are able, nowadays, to accept the need to rethink everything. Here are 16 of the 21 ideas that the book describes:
1. Companies that are now engaged in market research should become ‘data detectives’. They will analyze data from all types of IoT devices to provide other companies with data-based information. Their suppliers will be Alexa and company.
2. Companies now dedicated to any type of entertainment, in the future will need professionals of the ‘walker / talker’ type. This work is for a future when, thanks to biotechnology, people live longer than ever and there is a huge proportion of a population of senior citizens. Older people who will need someone to talk to.
3. Companies offering energy services or plumbing services may well be ‘intelligent city analysts’ in the future because, for the billions of data that cities will emit, it will be necessary to collect them with the available sensors, but above all, keep the value of this data and know how to modify what they collect according to their needs.
4. Today’s real estate developers and construction companies should, perhaps, evolve towards something like virtual space builders, well designed, according to human needs but in non-existent environments. Calculating those spaces should be very different from what we physically need. The success of a virtual space will depend on very different things from those that rule in an analogical place.
5. Travel agencies could become in the future a kind of creator of virtual experiences and be pioneers in what is called the experiential economy. We talked about the fact that the travel agent could be a writer with a lot of imagination, able to create arguments and unique spaces for clients with little time or traditional travel capacity.
6. The gymnasiums of the future could require a professional which we can already imagine when we see the massive use of some applications to get in shape. We talk about how they should convert into a kind of ‘virtual counselor for physical commitment’. For this, the user will give access to their vital signs, daily agenda, diet, etc., to these centers which will be permanently on top of compliance with all the precepts to be healthy. Many companies will demand, in the future, or not, this informative cadence from candidates for other jobs. Fitness clients of the future will allow an activity tracker, and a physical activity commitment counselor, to keep them motivated in their daily battle to achieve fitness.
7. The health centers of the future will change a lot. At least those of ambulatory care, first contact or basic assistance. These organizations will need ‘technical assistance by Artificial Intelligence’. Patients will not go to the doctor, IA-assisted healthcare technicians will appear at your door before you know you need them. All of them will use software to make diagnoses based on an expert system and they will even perform small surgeries with the help of portable robotic systems without needing any degree.
8. If in your company you’re working in any kind of commercial work you know that your days are limited. The future is the predictive sale and automation of everything that has to do with marketing. Even some creative aspects may be at stake. But what about the data that is massively generated now that can no longer be sold between companies? Facebook can no longer sell your data to Amazon. So a new job can be born when ‘an intermediary of personal data’ is needed to oversee and commercialize such personal data of a client so that he can obtain data for it.
9. Once the circulation of vehicles driven by humans in the cities is prohibited, autonomous cars will take to the streets. This will happen sooner than expected by some and will also happen mainly on urban roads and highways. Someday, everywhere. When this happens everything cannot be in the hands of the autonomous control of vehicles, a kind of ‘driver of autonomous vehicles’ assisted by intelligent systems will be essential. Drivers will need to direct and manage roads and streets to ensure that they are managed correctly in accordance with the predictions of intelligent systems.
- The day we enter a clothing store to buy clothes but there are no clothes we will experience trade of the future made present. Little by little, digital commerce is imposing its rules. We will go to shopping centers to see things that are not there, but we might be able to feel, touch virtually and have the physical assistance of a vendor. These conversations, sensations, and data will go directly to a ‘virtual tailor’ that will shortly offer you a product.
- Banks have a strange future, to say the least. In the immediate future, banking professionals who do not adapt to a space of very different relations will have a tough time. In a world where physical money is going to fade, payments with cryptocurrencies and microcredits linked to the Neobanks or the iBanks will grow, the need of a ‘virtual financial management adviser’ that will attend virtually in every moment will be imposed, like some Fintech do right now but personalizing the service. A financial advisor will be a kind of human App.
- Medical problems will arise in the future. Limitations that our body cannot easily overcome. People will live more than ever, but advances in memory and other health care issues related to the brain will hardly be at the same level of progress. We will need companies that are able to preserve our memory by creating virtual spaces with our own memories. The notaries of today should become ‘notaries of virtual memory’.
- In all types of companies, you will need a very special kind of professional. It has nothing to do with a specific sector, in fact, the interesting thing is that there will be companies that will offer this service. I’m talking about the manager or ‘man-machine relations manager’. The future of work depends on how well human beings and machines can collaborate. The manager of the teams of the immediate future will be responsible for discovering what the strengths of the machine are and what the strengths of humans are and combine them to form a much more productive work team.
- Insurers already know that their future is jeopardized. The emergence of industrial models that reduce the costs of ensuring something is enormous. Virtual training in risk scenarios, autonomous cars without accidents, 3D printing that eliminates transport problems, the blockchain that modifies the traditional insurance value chain, etc. That is why, among so many relationships with trust, these companies must offer a new service, ‘the trusted director’ that offers new services in the sense of the transparency that a user or client will need in the era of virtuality and the lack of risk beyond digital money.
- Traditional consulting companies also won’t last much longer. We were very happy telling others how to do things to face disruption. It turns out that that also comes through here. For business analysis work, it will be necessary to learn to manage in a completely different way. The consultants of the immediate future will be ‘responsible for combining the quantum processing of information’ with machine learning to stimulate better and faster solutions to real-world business problems. The ultimate goal will always be to build intelligent systems that can learn from the data. Hence, the future consultant will have to know very well what all this supposes and, surely, some mathematics.
- We know that those responsible for human resources should also embrace algorithms, journalists have before them the challenge of understanding their true role, those responsible for marketing or anyone who considers themselves untouchable will be touched. Among them, there are two very interesting responsibilities. Purchasing managers and general managers. The former will not be able to overcome the calculation efficiency of an algorithm, deciding what is better to buy, how and on what basis. The latter will not be able to establish strategic criteria than a model of business data analysis and artificial intelligence. Sooner or later, both will need to offer an ability that cannot be replaced by a machine: ethics. Companies or professionals that are called ‘ethical purchasing supervisors’ or ‘ethical directors’ will be required. A job for when large corporations decide to make decisions based on what is ethical, not on what is profitable.
I’m sure you can think of more, but these new professions could begin to answer the question, what will we do when machines do everything?