Workplace Technology & Automation But Please in Moderation #HUMANVSMACHINE

This week on Blogging4Jobs, we are focusing on the theme Man Versus Machine sponsored by 1 Page Proposal. Automation versus cognitive thought. Within this world of social media, social recruiting and HR technology, it’s easy to get caught up in the cool, the fads and the next big thing. But, at the end of the day, we cannot forgot that it’s people that really make social media initiatives kick ass. To follow the entire series make sure to bookmark our Man vs. Machine category for all the latest blog posts.

This morning I woke up early enough to hear my Roomba motoring its way to my kitchen where I used my Kerig to make me my favorite cup of Pumpkin Spice coffee.  In an hour my pool machine cleaner will motor it’s way to keeping my pool crystal clean but not before I checked in on my iPhone and sat down to write this blog post on my laptop. All before I actually had a real, human conversation with someone other than a machine. My daughter is still curled up sleeping in her bed so that whole human conversation thing will have to wait.

Is the Human Element Overrated?

I’ll say sweet nothings to my devices including my microwave while I heat up my daughter’s warm milk before we begin our day knowing that my car will take us where I need to go. Our reliance on technology specifically machines to help us in our daily lives is unreal when you really begin to think about it. I can easily go an entire day working from home without any personal or individual interaction taking the human out of business and adding in a lot more machine into my daily life.

No personal interaction is still acceptable and in truth, it’s not at all healthy, but it’s one of those times where I can actually get uninterrupted and productive work done. That is until my phone chirps to alert me to that Twitter message you just sent. Machines are not only improving our productivity, they also create opportunities to cost us productivity. And while I’m on Twitter, I should probably check all my social media accounts – Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and LinkedIn for good measure in case I missed something. One hour of my life is now gone thanks to the black hole of social media and unproductive distractions that happen as a result of technology.

And while I get up to have the Kerig whip me up a second cup of Java, I admit the importance of machines helping me to elevate my work and life. Admitting the obvious I guess is the first step, but the real challenge lies not in choosing to use small appliances to help me jump start my work day, but more importantly the choices I make when not to use the technology.

These choices are disguised as movements like the 4 Hour Workweek,  Candidate Experience or #HackingWork. They are campaigns created simply to drive awareness to what we already know. And that is that human interaction elevates all things. It creates a clear differentiation that makes the individual, the business and the brand unique. It makes us distinctly human. It makes us human beings.

The Power to Choose What Workplace Technology & When to Use

Want the key to increasing productivity and creating a workplace environment focused on culture, creativity and ingenuity?  It begins when you choose. Choose to start your day with a new attitude, creating a culture based on excellence or setting down that device in favor of a glass of wine and Tapas with a work friend to catch up.

Choose to end things like automated candidate application received messages and automated out of office emails. Choose to use big data and technology in partnership with a behavioral interview and selection process. Even better yet, choose to schedule weekly 1 on 1’s with your team and ending your reliance on that productivity monitoring software you installed for your remote and work from home employees.

What are you choosing to do today?

Special thanks to this week’s theme sponsor, 1 Page Proposal. Learn more about their revolution of Human vs. Machine by clicking here or by visiting the hash tag on Twitter #humanvsmachine.

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Jessica Miller-Merrell

Jessica Miller-Merrell (@jmillermerrell) is a workplace change agent, author and consultant focused on human resources and talent acquisition living in Austin, TX. Recognized by Forbes as a top 50 social media influencer and is a global speaker. She’s the founder of Workology, a workplace HR resource and host of the Workology Podcast.


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