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The Value of the Human Touch in the Wake of Digital Transformation

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We live in a world of digital transformation. According to experts, the digital transformation includes the integration of digital tech into all business areas. This movement brings fundamental changes to how businesses operate and provide their customers with value. New technologies can be used to boost efficiency, make complicated processes easier, and reduce costs of operation.

In many cases, businesses got an opportunity to explore different options for company performance thanks to innovations in robotics, artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, virtual reality and augmented reality. When repetitive, mundane, and dangerous tasks can be automated, team members have more time and strength to dedicate to specialized tasks that improve their skills, boost efficiency, and birth ideas.

However, there’s a catch to all this digital transformation—the lack of human touch that customers want and need. Why is the human touch so important in business and how can companies get the best of both worlds—enjoy digitalization while providing customers with the value they crave?

Human emotions drive businesses

Humans have a distinct position in nature. We are more rational than animals, yet more emotional than even the most sophisticated AI. According to recent findings by neuroscientists, the way humans make decisions is based on emotion just as much, if not more, than on reason. On the other hand, we have digitalization of almost all services, and computers are not very savvy in the emotional realm. Computers are helpful and practical, but most customers “click” with creativity and empathy of the human touch.

Let’s look at the data provided by newer companies like Airbnb and Uber, as well as well-established industry giants like Apple, Starbucks, and Amazon. We can see how introducing the personal touch can make all the difference between being prosperous on all fronts and losing business. One of the issues with digitalization is that digital tech needs to be right. Without credible offerings and good digital ecosystems, no company can survive the revolution. Also, when wrong, tech needs to apologize, try new approaches, and provide customers with reassurance—only the human touch can do so right now.

Tech is getting smarter

It is true that tech is getting better and better at mimicking human emotion. In the digital transformation age, we can also expect to see something resembling a human transformation—meaning we can expect to see tech that can connect with people on a deeper level, thus transforming the human mind. Tech is slowly learning how to connect with customers, how to set the scene for good corporate leadership, and how to build a positive human connection with customers through ‘heartketing’. Heartketing is a fairly new term that denotes marketing to the heart, thus creating a more emotional relationship with the client. It’s important for customers to have a person-to-person talk to someone behind the screen, as shown during the research phase of heartketing.

We’re losing sight of behaving humanely

Customers are more and more concerned about company culture and philosophy when interacting with brands. Since we have much easier access to current events and concerns in the world, it’s easy to see why customers don’t want to engage with companies that contribute to pollution, ethical issues, homelessness, and habitat destruction. Companies that understand the emotional side of doing business will thrive in the future. The human touch when approaching business is very important, and buyers want to see companies contribute to positive things not just by donating money but by donating time and effort as well. Companies can join movements and organizations like Habitat for Humanity and show customers their workers are aware of issues and working actively to rectify them. By joining housing builds, companies can inspire buyers to be more engaged and start a revolution. This way, it’s obvious how the human touch can inspire, grow and advance any company.

Customer relations rely on humans

According to research, humans should still remain in the central role when it comes to customer relationships. However, humans in customer support and other human-to-human roles need to move more toward creativity, emotion, and passion and away from purely technical support roles. It’s obvious that automation, digitalization, app development, and AI allow businesses to handle countless customer questions and disputes every day, however, this isn’t necessary at all if it makes people feel like numbers and commodities instead of human beings and valued customers. Only through the human touch can customers create an emotional connection when interacting with brands, their products, and their services.

Conclusion

While digitalization benefits all businesses, business leaders, employees, and customers, it’s getting more and more evident that the human touch in business will become more important in the upcoming years, contrary to what we previously believed. All successful businesses will need to find the middle ground when balancing their digital transformation and human touch. The end goal would be to have technological advancements and technological transformation that allow the human touch to grow with them.


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Eve Anderson is a marketing specialist turned blogger. Interested in sports and exciting travel destinations. Love to share content that can inform people.
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