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17 Digital Workers Use Cases for Different Business Units (2024)

Digital workers are the contemporary version of intelligent automation. Instead of the rule-based automation that is provided by typical RPA bots, digital workers are flexible, able to switch between a variety of tasks almost instantaneously. They are designed to complete an entire business process (like selecting workers to get promoted) from beginning to end. Moreover, because of their NLP and RPA capabilities, they can communicate with people, comprehend their inquiries, automate the procedures, and gain experience through repeated interaction with data.

The problem is that because digital workers/employees are relatively a new phenomenon, many executives are unaware of the time and money they may save by deploying them. Thus, in this article, we introduce 17 digital workers’ use cases in different departments to give executives an in-depth picture of digital workers’ efficiency and effectiveness in the workplace. 

General tasks that are automatable by digital workers 

Irrespective of  the department, there are some common tasks employees should do to ensure business operational continuity. Sharing and creating reports, data extraction, communicating with colleagues, and organizing schedules are all examples of such mundane tasks. 

By integrating with standard corporate systems like ERP, CRM, finance automation tools, and collaboration tools like emails, digital workers can automate the following tasks (See Figure 1):

  1. Drafting emails
  2. Organizing schedule and meetings
  3. Updating business data
  4. Generating reports from corporate tools
  5. Interpreting data, preparing charts and tables for the personnel.
  6. Extracting data from the existing reports, databases and cloud data platforms.
  7. Entering data, which might be crucial for many firms due to the specific nature of their procedures or compliance measures.

Figure 1: General tasks digital workers can automate

The image represents a use case of a digital worker that automates many general purpose tasks such as:  scheduling a meeting, reminding an important event and emailing a colleague.
Source: IBM

Since executing such repetitive operations takes up 50%  of employees’ time in some departments/industries, automating them can considerably boost productivity. For instance, according to an Accenture survey, underwriting departments at insurance companies spend nearly half of their time performing monotonous operations like data extraction, interpretation, and email sending.

HR department’s specific use cases

Digital employees are excellent tools for augmenting your HR team. Most HR departments around the world are currently battling the Great Resignation, and have difficulty finding and retaining talent. Automating many HR duties through digital workers can give HR staff more time to identify solutions to the Great Resignation.  

8. Recruiting

Digital workers can automate the entire hiring process, freeing up recruiters’ time for more strategic and valuable jobs, such as  carefully assessing candidates.

Recruiters help different department heads find suitable employees. The general steps of recruitment are the followings (See Figure 1):

  • Uploading job description,
  • Sourcing existing talent pool,
  • Screening candidates,
  • Determining shortlist,
  • And hiring.  

Figure 2: Steps of hiring

Hiring process starts with uploading the job description, then recruiters check the CVs that are accumulated on the talent pool and determine potentially suitable candidates. Recruitment process continues with organizing meetings to assess candidates in a more detailed way. Successful candidates are shortlisted and reported managers of our departments for the other potential meetings. Then managers and recruiters decide about the employees that will work with the company and recruiters send offers to these candidates.
Source: AIMultiple

Digital workers augment recruiters by:

  • Creating a job description that introduces the position and required skills.
  • See if someone in the talent pool already on site meets the job criteria.
  • Extracting and examining the applications from platforms like LinkedIn or Glassdoor to identify people who match the job requirements, and combining them with eligible prospects from the talent pool already in place.
  • Setting up interviews between recruiters and potential employees.
  • Creating and distributing spreadsheets to different department heads, updating them on the qualifications of the applicants who pass the initial screening.
  • Sending decision-emails to candidates regarding their process (e.g. accepted, rejected, waitlisted, etc.) 

Thus, recruiters can focus on the interview process mostly, which is the added value process of recruiting.

9. Promoting

Periodic promotion processes are crucial for firms since a fair and timely one improves employee retention. On the other hand, promotion processes bring heavy workload on HR personnel since it requires sending hundreds of emails to managers, creating countless spreadsheets subject to the feedback of managers, and updating employee records on platforms like Workday. 

However, thanks to digital workers, the HR team does not have to spend hours reviewing and approving activities because digital workers start and manage the approval workflow for promotions on their own (See Figure 3).

Figure 3: Job description of a digital worker that specializes on promotion process

This image is taken from a digital workers identity card. As you can see from the image it is deployed as an Digital HR Partner and its main responsibility is automating the promotion process thanks to its skills like kicking off emails, adding nomination lists and updating employees' records on Workday.
Source: IBM

You can also read our Top 5 Use Cases of Intelligent Automation in Human Resources article to find out intelligent automation use cases for HR.

Sales department’s specific use cases

Sales is the main driver of firms’ income, and digital workers can automate many end-to-end sales processes, such as the following:

10. Effortless data entry on CRM systems

Digital workers automate time consuming data entry processes on CRM systems.  

CRM technologies keep track of a customer’s prior interactions on a single platform, enabling salespeople to make data-driven decisions regarding their client relationships. Salespeople continuously input data into these systems to keep them up to date in this aspect. For instance, the typical sales representative who uses CRM spends almost 5.5 hours each week entering information on contacts and activities.

Nowadays, you can ask your digital workers to enter customer specific data on the CRM tools from spreadsheets or other documents.

To learn more about how AI is transforming typical CRM applications, click here. 

11. Monitoring proposals offline

Just like humans, digital workers have an identity. With their identities, they can log into well-known business systems like Salesforce and monitor the processes for you thanks to the APIs. Digital workers use communication platforms like Slack to notify you of any proposals from your customers. Your sales staff may therefore concentrate on activities that offer value, such as interacting with clients, rather than doing repetitive work. 

12. Reporting

To understand how they and the business are performing, sales teams need to be updated on a regular basis on sales volume, customer satisfaction, revenue, sales/marketing costs, profitability, and other business-related data.

Digital employees can export data from platforms like Salesforce, interpret it for managers, and present it visually. For instance, they can make charts or fill in certain sales data with a specific color if they fall below predetermined criteria. Then they can send these reports to shareholders, CEOs, and department heads. 

13. Customer service

Yet, a digital worker is more than just a chatbot powered by conversational AI that responds to client inquiries. They can be used as a bot to respond to inquiries from customers about the features of your products.

If you need more information regarding how automation improves efficiency of sales departments you can read our 18 Sales Processes to Automate with RPA article.

Supply chain department’s specific use cases

In order to accomplish numerous supply chain-related activities usually done by junior personnel, digital workers can interact with popular ERP systems like SAP. By doing this, they assist people in concentrating on reducing the risks associated with supply chain disruptions, supply chain strategy, and the transformation of supply chains into more sustainable ones. 

14. Stock management

Digital workers can ensure an optimal stock management by checking predetermined KPIs and purchase data. They then can alert employees if there are low stock quantities for certain goods or any change in the demand.

15. Pricing

Digital employees have a memory and can learn from experience . As a result, if you employ them for a sufficient period of time, they will be able to comprehend your business’s discounting policy, promotional offers, client relationship strategies, and more. 

Additionally, they may have access to information about orders and the cost of shipping of products. Thus, they will eventually be able to comprehend your pricing strategy and provide a data-driven sales offer to your workforce to offer clients. 

16. Tracking goods offline

Digital workers can keep track of how your products and raw materials move through the supply chain and alert you if there are any delays, or other issues. Thus, employees may now concentrate on fixing issues as they arise in real-time, since they are not required to follow supply chain processes any longer.

17. Reporting

Supply chain activities produce many numbers that wait for interpretation to make them useful. By collaborating with ERP systems, digital workers can help you find:

  • The carbon footprint of your supply chain activities (which will be mandatory for many European companies to disclose starting from 2023 as part of their ESG reports).
  • The average time it takes for intermediate items or your finished products to arrive at the destination.
  • Supply chain related costs, and more. 

Digital workers can also send these reports to your colleagues and suppliers if they are asked for. 

If you need more information regarding supply chain automation you can read our 3 Ways to Improve Supply Chain with Automation article. 

If you need more information on digital workers and their use cases you can reach us:

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This article was drafted by former AIMultiple industry analyst Görkem Gençer.

Access Cem's 2 decades of B2B tech experience as a tech consultant, enterprise leader, startup entrepreneur & industry analyst. Leverage insights informing top Fortune 500 every month.
Cem Dilmegani
Principal Analyst
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Cem Dilmegani
Principal Analyst

Cem has been the principal analyst at AIMultiple since 2017. AIMultiple informs hundreds of thousands of businesses (as per similarWeb) including 60% of Fortune 500 every month.

Cem's work has been cited by leading global publications including Business Insider, Forbes, Washington Post, global firms like Deloitte, HPE, NGOs like World Economic Forum and supranational organizations like European Commission. You can see more reputable companies and media that referenced AIMultiple.

Throughout his career, Cem served as a tech consultant, tech buyer and tech entrepreneur. He advised businesses on their enterprise software, automation, cloud, AI / ML and other technology related decisions at McKinsey & Company and Altman Solon for more than a decade. He also published a McKinsey report on digitalization.

He led technology strategy and procurement of a telco while reporting to the CEO. He has also led commercial growth of deep tech company Hypatos that reached a 7 digit annual recurring revenue and a 9 digit valuation from 0 within 2 years. Cem's work in Hypatos was covered by leading technology publications like TechCrunch and Business Insider.

Cem regularly speaks at international technology conferences. He graduated from Bogazici University as a computer engineer and holds an MBA from Columbia Business School.

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