Empowering the Intelligent Workforce - Key Insights from KPMG and Microsoft Canada

Last week we had the opportunity to attend the Empowering the Intelligent Workforce event hosted by KPMG and Microsoft Canada for local tech employers and innovators to explore  AI and the future of work. The event included leading experts from KPMG, Microsoft, CIBC and Manulife, discussing a range of topics on helping organizations prepare for the future of work. With the help of AI, here's a recap of my notes:

1. Acceleration of Technology and Innovation: The event highlighted the rapid pace of technological advancement and its impact on businesses. The role of the Chief Information Officer (CIO) is evolving to not only manage this acceleration but also to drive the modernization of the workforce, particularly in leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) for knowledge/desk-based workers.
 
Digital debt is costing us innovation-2
 
2. Skills for the Modern Workforce: A significant focus was placed on the essential skills needed in this new era, including the ability to persuade others about the benefits and ethics of technology and AI. There's a growing need for leaders to be adept communicators, capable of articulating and navigating changes brought about by AI and the potential benefits and impacts to their teams. 

3. The Role of AI Copilots:
 AI is seen as a 'copilot' in various organizational roles, assisting in offloading workloads and empowering employees. This concept extends across different functions, including sales, customer service, HR, IT, and developers. Microsoft Copilot is designed to report directly to leaders just like team members, to streamline work, enhance efficiencies and make work easier.
What My Org Really Looks Like (Enhanced by AI)
 
Copilot as Direct Report! How-1
 
4. Implementation and Readiness: The discussion covered the importance of having a readiness assessment checklist to ensure all necessary elements are in place before launching AI-driven initiatives. This includes understanding the personas of staff groups that appear in the Insights data to tailor AI applications effectively.

5. Workforce Transformation: Post-implementation, the challenge is to prepare the workforce for change by introducing new ways of working, necessary skills, and processes. This involves a strategic approach to talent recruitment and role definitions, emphasizing learning agility and the ability to adapt to constant change.
 
6. Enhancing Employee Experience: AI's role in transforming the employee experience was also discussed, including the potential support of work-time reduction strategies like 32-hour / 4-day work weeks by reducing time spent on less desirable tasks. The 6-months of Microsoft Copilot shows 52% of users site employee wellbeing as a top outcome, largely contributing to reduced workload and time for creative/innovative thinking/projects.
 
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7. From a Justice, Access, Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity (JAIDE) lense, KPMG is already using AI to support it's global data science team, allowing staff to share insights and reports in their preferred language, and being translated in multiple languages for teams across continents.  

Additionally, the potential benefits of generative AI in supporting neurodivergent employees, highlighting its inclusivity to support effectively communicating thoughts and ideas, improve focus, task-switching, and other opportunities. 
 
If you're interested in discussing how you can prepare your organization for the future of work and building a human-centric employee experience. Book a free 30-minute meeting with me to learn more.

Posted by

Nate Robertson


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