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    Human processes within a business system

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    We know that everything cannot be computerized. One of the reasons why some apparently simple activities cannot be fully computerized is the need for tacit knowledge. Consider, for example, a hotel receptionist who has to rapidly identify whether a person checking in is part of a family coming together, a group of travelers. A simple activity like this may involve visual, hearing, and other clues which are learned over many years and are difficult to elicit and formalize in any notation and implement in any computer algorithm. Think, for example, of other activities you are familiar with that involve tacit knowledge.

    Based on these, what are some of the advantages of retaining some level of human processes within a business system?

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    Many business systems are designed for efficiency. Whether they help improve sales by
    maintaining vital information about each customer or allow customers to check their accounts any time
    of day or night, they can provide some features that humans are unable to provide or that may be too
    costly for humans to provide. For instance, if a bank was to provide a live representative to each
    customer checking his or her bank balance after hours it would need to hire many representatives to
    handle the volume of calls. Most institutions offer 24 hour access through the internet or phone, with
    just a few representatives in a central location to handle any potential inquiries the automated service
    cannot. In some institutions speaking to a live agent is simply not possible after a certain time of day.

    Providing some form of human involves makes a system more personal. Customers may benefit
    from automated services which are faster and can provide the same information. However, not all
    inquiries or issues can be handled by information that is readily available. A customer may need to
    know if a fee is involved in for a funds transfer from another bank or what the daily withdrawal limits
    are for a specific account. Both types of information require the knowledge of a bank representative, as
    the automated system cannot access such general information. Therefore, adding some human process
    to an automated business system gives consumers a level of service they would not have if no human
    processes were involved. ...

    Solution Summary

    This solution discusses advantages of retaining some level of human processes within a business system.