Reconciling Human and Machine Intelligence in Business Processes

Reconciling Human and Machine Intelligence in Business Processes

Automation is growing at an increasing rate in the business world. Every day, solutions that further promote automation in business processes are being developed and integrated. As more organizations make use of automation and machine intelligence, is there still room for human intelligence? The simple answer is yes.

One must first understand that automation has its own set of limitations, and organizations must also consider the important practical and ethical questions that may arise with the use of machine intelligence. These ethical questions apply to a wide range of issues, from employee and customer privacy to its automation’s impact on employment. At the end of the day, however, organizations must ensure that these solutions must augment business processes, rather than diminish them.

The human element

One particular benefit of automating business processes is the prevention of common human errors. Automation relieves human workers of repetitive tasks, thereby making businesses much more efficient.

Reducing human errors is an important part of streamlining processes and improving brand perception, but this shouldn’t be to the detriment of the human element. As noted by numerous authors, while removing the human element from the man-machine system might seem like the ideal situation, organizations must also recognize that humans are variable, interactive and adaptable.

While automation yields predictable and consistent performance, it lacks logic, judgment and adaptability inherent to humans. On the flip side, humans are unpredictable and inconsistent, often to the disadvantage of a system’s performance. The challenge, then, is to strike a balance between human and machine intelligence.

Putting human over machine

Part of successfully combining human and machine intelligence is understanding the fact that automation is only able to provide information. Humans, having the rationality and wisdom to process information, can then apply the information appropriately to any given business or personal context. Humans play a vital role in interrogating and interpreting the data.

Organizations adept at automation are also aware of certain business processes in which automation is a hindrance rather than a tool. In particular, they understand that certain decisions are still best left to humans. To make sure that your business is introducing automation properly, critical thinking must be encouraged, especially for customer-facing processes. As sophisticated as the latest tools might seem, they do have their own set of limitations. Humans will need to intercede once automation is disrupted so as to ensure companies will continue to function.

Automation is indeed indispensable in streamlining business processes, but machine intelligence can only go so far without the aid of human intelligence. Striking the proper balance will help businesses reap the many benefits offered by automation.


ADEC Philippines leverages ADEC Innovations‘ data management and technological resources to bring customized outsourcing solutions that help organizations streamline their processes. Our data management resources can help your organization make the most out of automation, thereby empowering you to make better decisions.