Artificial Intelligence in the Managed Print Service Industry: Can The Two Work In Harmony?

Rewind back a few decades, and the term Artificial Intelligence was confined to the world of sci-fi and movies.  Many of us watched “The Terminator” in awe at this augmentation of human and machine who was sent back in time to prevent the future leader of a resistance army group from ever being born and marveled at the technology we saw. It seemed to be the stuff of dreams, but in 2018 the widespread use of artificial intelligence, along with machine learning, has been and continues to be a hot topic.

Many of us are already used to using Artificial Intelligence in some way in our lives, and at times it is likely we don’t even realize we are using it. We think nothing of saying to our smart speakers, “Alexa, remind me to send my data statistics report to John at 4pm”, or “Alexa, send my report to printer 1”. These are two examples where Artificial Intelligence has dominated our lives.

The End of Jobs in the MPS Industry?

One industry where Artificial Intelligence has the capacity to dominate is the managed print service industry, with many who work in it fearing for their jobs as Artificial Intelligence takes over and automates some parts of their roles. Automated systems are considered a huge threat to jobs in – a recent study commissioned and released by Oxford University found that  people believe that half of all jobs in the UK are at risk of disappearing thanks to automated systems appearing over the next two decades.

The true picture, however, is unlikely to be as extreme as this, as another study released by Stanford University found that there is no imminent threat to jobs through the widespread adoption of artificial intelligence. Rather, it is more likely that automated systems will have a very positive impact, as opposed to a negative one.

Applying Artificial Intelligence to the Managed Print Service

Although great strides have been made with robots, they cannot replace more in-depth roles that require a great deal of technical knowledge. It is likely that those who have a strong background in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) will continue to be in demand in the managed print service industry due to their bespoke skill set.

Even in 2018, computers simply cannot understand how things work. They are good at certain tasks and games, but as artificial intelligence continues to grow and develop, the integration between it and humans is still vital to AI’s development. Therefore, humans are still needed in the managed print service industry to develop and grow artificial intelligence as a new technology.

Artificial Intelligence and Humans Coexisting in the Managed Print Service Industry

Technological advances over the ages have helped to create an abundance of new jobs in all industries, as well as the managed print service industry. Going back as far as the industrial revolution, jobs were created to run the machines which helped the transition from hand production methods to the use of steam power and iron production processes. This isn’t too dissimilar to today - people are still required to programme artificial intelligence and drive it for the technology to work efficiently.

It is clear that artificial intelligence and machine learning has the power transform the managed print service industry and enhance it. As this new and emerging technology grows, adapts and becomes a big part of our lives, the scope to embrace this innovative technology and use it to develop new technological advances is huge. With the right skill sets, those in the managed print service industry who can work with Artificial Intelligence and use it to create new advancements will continue to be in demand for many years to come.

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Posted by ITDS

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IT Document Solutions is an innovative and exemplary provider of managed print and document solutions, providing business consultancy and service support for businesses and organisations across the UK.

We help our customers optimise their IT print and document infrastructure to enhance both their systems and environmental performance while also reducing costs, to help increase profitability, and maximising return on investment.

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