The Robot Future Led By Humans

The Robot Future Led By Humans

Can you run a complex algorithm for me that will save me time and make my company more money? Sure, Joe, I will get right on that. This might not be how we interact with artificial intelligence (AI) today, but it may not be far off. The future of work is a growing conversation with a 40% increase on social networks globally with Germans holding a slight edge at a 42% increase. Could the automation of more complex tasks be on the horizon?

A couple of months ago, Adobe unveiled new social listening insights on the future of work, which we were discussed in Berlin on June 27 at Think Tank by Adobe: The Future of Work from Berlin. The insights are a follow-up to a social report we released in February focused on global English speaking mentions, this time with additional regional insights focused on Germany and the United Kingdom (U.K.). Our analyses looked at around four million English and German social mentions between January 2016 and May 2017 on the future of work and the technologies that will help define it. Social conversations are mostly focused around a few top topics for Germans and those in the U.K. including automation, people analytics (including working environments), and transportation.


The combination of robots and machine learning has energized those in the U.K and Germany. Nearly 50% of Germans were excited about the global digital transformation (27%) and the possibility of saving time with mundane tasks due to advancement in AI and automation (22%). 

The U.K. is the most eager about the prospects of saving time (30%) and big data analysis (25%) improvements that automation can bring. They feel that automation will lead to jobs that are not yet thought of yet.

People Analytics

Along with automation, we examined people analytics—a company’s use of people-related data to improve all levels of its business including working environment, worker motivation, and stronger team collaboration.

71% of companies now consider people analytics a top priority per a recent Deloitte survey. It’s not going unnoticed. The daily conversations about people analytics have increased in the U.K., Germany, and globally over the last year (55%, 28%, and 20%, respectively). Positive net sentiment in Germany (0.56) and the U.K. (3.53) suggests workers are excited about the prospect of how companies use of data about its employees will improve working environments.

Conversations about future working environments have the highest sentiment in the U.K. (4.31 net sentiment) and the highest share of mentions in Germany, where it is known as “arbeitswelt” (26%). Workplaces focused on collaboration, improved management, and automation of tasks could be key to a smoother transition into the greater automation of complex tasks.


If you dream of a quick work commute via the Hyperloop or watching The Avengers in your back seat while being chauffeured in a self-driving car, you would fit right in with the Germans. In the land of automakers, transportation has the highest net sentiment of future of work topics (3.89 net sentiment). BMW topped German mentions of self-driving car manufacturers, beating out the global leader Tesla.

In the U.K., they’re just as positive about self-driving cars with a net sentiment 4x higher than conversations about the London Underground. Hyperloop and its extra fast speeds have the highest sentiment among future transport options discussed in the UK. 

Robots and automation may become more incorporated into our daily lives, but it could also lead to a continued evolution of the information age. For now, AI may not take simple voice commands to immediately improve a business and increase revenue, but AI and machine learning platforms like Adobe Sensei will help to save time, which is music to the ears of those in Germany and the U.K.  

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  • Geoff Schumann

    Today's robots do not handle variation well, but for some tasks it is either expensive and time-consuming or simply not possible to engineer out all the variation

  • Ryan Brant

    Robots taking over many aspects of modern workplaces will change our life for the better or the worse

  • Yorkshire Lad

    Another intriguing Artificial Intelligence article

  • Anthony Dreg

    China is way ahead of Germany and the U.K. in the A.I race

  • Joshua Marshall

    Really insane....

  • Greg Blesch

    I am glad that you have highlighted the importance of people analytics

  • Elizabeth Haze

    At the moment we can work together with robots because we are the masters and they are our creatures.

  • Charles Pandau

    What if robots get out of control? How can we stop them????

  • Susan Rowley

    I should definitely check out Adobe Sensei

  • Brian Anderson

    Self driving cars will be a huge success

  • Patricia Handy

    Automation will save time and reduce costs, but I am cautious. If we rely too much on machines, they might replace us and takeover our jobs

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Joe Martin

Tech Expert

Joe is VP of Corporate and Demand Marketing at Zight. He also served as the CMO of Stockchain Global and Advisory Board Member at Ylixr. He has over 15 years experience managing various areas of marketing including research, media buying, social, and overall strategy. His analyses have been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, CNBC, Associated Press, and Forbes. Joe holds a BSc in Finance and MBA in Strategy & Marketing from the University of Utah. He also has an Executive Degree in Entrepreneurship and Innovation from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business.

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