Technology

Covid brings automation to the workplace, killing some jobs


My famous recipe Chicken, a fast-food chain in Ohio, hardly seems like an obvious place for the newest Artificial intelligence. But the company’s push engine showcases technology that reveals how the Covid-19 pandemic is accelerating the crawl automation In some workplaces.

Couldn’t find enough workers, Chuck Cooper, CEO Lay’s Famous Chicken RecipeIn many locations, an automated voice system has been installed to receive orders. System developed by تطوير Intel Corporation And Hi Auto, a voice-recognition company, never fails to drive customer sales on french fries or drinks, which Cooper says has boosted sales. In outlets equipped with the audio system, there is no longer a need for a person to take orders from the command window. “It also never calls for disease,” Cooper says.

Cooper says he believes the enhanced unemployment tests have turned away some potential workers, but says there are concerns about exposure التعرض Corona virus disease Difficulty accessing child care due to the pandemic may also be factors. However, he says, “there is no way to go back.”

Other employers, too, are using automation in place of workers during the pandemic. Some restaurants and supermarkets say so Can’t find enough new workers to open new locations. Many companies are keen to rehire workers as quickly as possible, but economists say the technology will remain, replacing employees in some cases.

History suggests that “automation takes place faster during downturns and stays put afterwards,” he says Daron Acemoglu, an economist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. “It should be doubly true today.” Acemoglu says companies are adopting more automation partly because of staff shortages but also because it can help with new safety measures, and improved efficiency.

This applies to many meat handlers, who adopted technology at the start of the pandemic to enable social distancing among workers, he says Jonathan Van Wyck, a partner at the Boston Consulting Group. Now, the labor shortage driving up wages has prompted one wizard he works with to deploy more machines. it recently installed a camera system that uses artificial intelligence algorithms to search for foreign objects, such as a stray glove in freshly chopped meat; The system will replace at least one factor. “A lot of companies are starting with automation and realizing that there are a lot of opportunities in the digital space that are not robots but can move the needle in labor,” he says.

David the authorAnother MIT economist who studies computing and its impact on the labor market believes that Covid has accelerated changes that were almost certain to eventually happen. Now they won’t be considered a thing for “the future,” he says.

Bots get a lot of hype, but they are Not smart enough to replace humans In food processing plants, kitchens or restaurants. Still big fast food chains like McDonald’s They were investing in tools like ordering kiosks and new machines to automate more aspects of cooking before the pandemic.

Hudson RealD., senior vice president of the National Restaurant Association, says Covid has undoubtedly accelerated that trend. He says many restaurants are using technology to reorganize workers, as part of a long-term move toward greater use of automation.

“During the pandemic, more operators have stepped up their investment in technology” that automates specific tasks, Riel says. “The most important thing is to order and pay.”

The massive shift to virtual delivery and kitchens caused by the pandemic may mean that some restaurants and some customers will be more willing to use technology that previously seemed unfamiliar. Using an app to order at a restaurant table may mean that, eventually, fewer servers will be required.

The pandemic has also upended other industries, including retail and hotels. But tracking the use of AI across the economy is difficult, because technology cannot simply intervene for workers in most cases, and because different jobs, in different industries, tend to be automated in different ways.

Sam RansbothamD., a Boston College professor who studies companies’ adoption of artificial intelligence during the pandemic. In a report later this year, Ransbotham says he and his colleagues have found widespread adoption of the technology in response to the pandemic. He says this usually involves automating specific tasks rather than replacing workers wholesale.



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