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Could a robot do your job?

Whether your answer to this question is "Great! - I'm ready for a change" or "I hope not, I love my job," you can probably not realistically imagine your role being automated.

Some 'doom and gloom' news reports would have you believe that we, as a working species, are under threat from Artificial Intelligence and an army of robots, but there are two sides to every story.

For instance, automation could bring about a reduction in the 40-hour working week - is that such a bad thing? Not if you're involved in repetitive, non-creative work and desperate to improve your work-life balance. Or it could automate all the less interesting parts of your job and leave you free to think more creatively and strategically whilst improving productivity - also not a bad thing. 

You may find it surprising to learn that at current technology levels, it is estimated that fewer than 5% of occupations can technically be fully automated. Only meat packers, stucco masons and ophthalmic lab technicians rank top spots in the hit list. Breathing easier already?

Technology has progressed rapidly with new, sophisticated algorithms now enabling machines to not just operate in a factory setting, but to challenge a range of administrative roles. It seems that the legal and financial services sectors are prime candidates for takeover.

Despair not - employees will gain the opportunity to focus on more complex roles such as those requiring empathy, a high degree of social intelligence, negotiation skills, dexterity and creativity - all areas the robots cannot yet infiltrate effectively.

Take the law industry with its notorious reliance on paper documentation and the monotonous, time-consuming and repetitive work required to keep on top of it. If you were to let automation such as an automated digital mailroom take over some of these tasks, then fee-earners would be able to deploy their talents into more profitable areas of work.

Outsourcing these tasks to a company like, Restore Scan, with its automation expertise, ensures that the job is completed securely and efficiently. The company is currently able to scan between 5,000 and 7,000 documents an hour ranging from small till receipts to A3 or large format documents. Its seriously efficient Kodex scanners take no prisoners - whether deciphering paper or card, thick or thin material, ECG scans or examination papers, no item needs to be excluded from the scanning operation.

Healthcare too, presents many scanning opportunities. Digitising patient medical records and providing secure cloud storage means key records can be accessed quickly from any device, anytime, anywhere. No more administrators scurrying around hospital corridors with arms full of papers or surgeon's desks stacked with patient files.

In fact, there are already tangible results demonstrated across patient care. For example, The Royal Liverpool & Broadgreen University Hospital NHS Trust has engaged Restore to scan and digitise all its patient records, and has quickly seen a marked improvement in patient flow. All thanks to being able to work faster and eliminate the 'paper chains' around its neck.

Final thoughts - tasks lending themselves to automation and algorithms should be handed over to the machines, allowing productivity and profitability to soar. However, if you want originality, creativity, empathy, and high-level thinking, we humans are still, as yet, irreplaceable.

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