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A transaction screening analyst, Tara has daily tasks that include continuously reviewing alert messages, examining alert reviews and dispositions, cross-referencing messages with third-party tools such as Google or OpenCorporates.com, and tuning systems to improve automation rates.
“My role is to make flags on potential risky transactions, whether they come from individuals or institutions,” Tara explains, emphasizing the critical nature of regulatory adherence. “Sanctions are serious business. This is really important work.”
Tara is a sophisticated bot — complete with a name, face, personality, CV, and deep industry expertise and experience. She is one of six digital “colleagues” that have been developed and deployed by intelligent automation and robotic process automation (RPA) company WorkFusion.
Welcome to the new digital workforce
“Enterprises today in every sector are facing the greatest labor shortage in history, and it’s even more difficult to source, hire, and train knowledge workers who can perform complex jobs that require numerous daily data-driven decisions,” said WorkFusion CEO Adam Famularo.
He pointed to the so-called ongoing “Great Resignation,” and, particularly in the insurance and financial sectors, increasing regulatory pressure. Businesses can expand their team’s capacity with “digital colleagues who never get tired, can’t be distracted, and perform flawlessly.”
Companies across numerous industries are increasingly relying on digital workers to automate and streamline various tasks — and, in turn, these virtual employees powered by AI, machine learning, RPA, and analytics are becoming even more advanced.
According to Forrester’s “Future of Work,” automation will transform 80% of jobs in some way by 2030. More Fortune 1000 Company executives are going to look to AI, bots, robots, and smart technologies to address the employee experience, compensation, and regulatory pressures, Forrester anticipates.
WorkFusion is one of a growing number of companies going beyond traditional RPA to meet this demand. Others in the space include Digital Workforce, Thoughtful Automation, and Tangentia. The New York City-based WorkFusion today announced the release of its new AI-powered digital workforce, which uses intelligent automation to work alongside human teams in banking, finance, insurance, and other industries. As Famularo explained, these new “team members” arrive on the job fully trained, are immediately productive, and can work independently or under supervision (what’s known as “human-in-the-loop” interaction).
And they are represented with human personification. The company hired actors to represent them, so they all have a face, as well as names, titles, previous work experiences, and extensive lists of complex skills. Prospective customers can view their CVs on WorkFusion’s website and can also watch short videos in which they explain their roles and expertise.
According to Famularo, this human portrayal of digital workers was driven by WorkFusion customers. “To be able to have a name and a face makes it easier to interact with them and associate them with the work that they do,” he said. “It is this digital workforce that is going to come to life.”
Meet Tara’s AI-powered colleagues
In addition to Tara, the company developed Ilana, an insurance underwriter who collects, reviews, and analyzes new business applications, qualifies accounts, and enters quotes into company quoting and rating system as well as Kendrick, a customer ID program analyst who reviews customer identity documents for quality assurance and ensures that proof of identity is captured and entered into company databases. Other digital team members include Evelyn, a sanction screening analyst; Darryl, a customer due diligence program analyst; and Casey, a customer service coordinator.
WorkFusion expects to deploy additional digital workers later this year: Carlos, a customer outreach analyst; Isaac, an investigations analyst; Laticia, a lending operations analyst; and Shawn, a sales operations analyst.
WorkFusion’s focus on financial services and insurance dictated the initial grouping. “We wanted to make sure we were deep and rich in skill sets specific for financial services and insurance,” he said. The goal is to “go deep and rich with a specific job role, then enable that job role to traverse industries in the future,” Famularo said.
These digital workers can be deployed as-is, or companies can customize them so that they are unique to their businesses and processes. One or one hundred Kendricks or Caseys can be integrated into business functions, Famularo said. They are scalable, and their AI core continuously learns and improves with every assignment and interaction. As they work in secure, on-premise, private cloud, managed services cloud, and SaaS environments, the WorkFusion Network allows them to share insights, skills, and knowledge that in turn enables continuous enhancement and updating. The network also aggregates performance results so that companies can assess their effectiveness.
“It is a self-learning ecosystem of digital workers,” Famularo said.
He emphasized that this virtual workforce supplements human workers by shouldering heavy loads and enabling their human counterparts to tackle more impactful, high-level tasks and projects. Reading and dissecting emails and documents and assessing whether a transaction should be completed or not are “all things we can do better with a digital workforce,” he said.
In developing these virtual workers, WorkFusion built upon its decade of experience in automating complex operational functions. Their differentiator, according to Famularo, is that they fully automate an entire job role and leverage deep machine learning to constantly enhance themselves. They can be up and running in a short period of time, increasing time to value while reducing costs, speeding compliance, and enhancing customer and employee experiences.
“They are full-scale digital knowledge workers; they can do full work,” Famularo said.
As more companies integrate its initial six workers, WorkFusion will continue to fine tune and grow their skillsets and interaction abilities. “It’s this network effect of self-learning: five, six, seven, eight of the same Tara can be working for several companies today,” Famularo said. And as they work, WorkFusion can “gather up intelligence, establish a model behind what they’re doing and how they’re doing it.”
More digital employees on the job means that the WorkFusion platform grows smarter and smarter. “Every Evelyn that’s out there is making us better,” Famularo said.
Ultimately, “companies are all starved for talent,” he added. The question WorkFusion is striving to answer is this: “How do you use a digital workforce to take the work?”
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