Have you ever wondered how AI is reshaping the way you work?

Welcome to an insightful interview on the transformative impact of artificial intelligence (AI) on the future of work. Logistics Matters dives deeper into the perspective of Maik Schmidt, Technology Architect at DB SCHENKER, offering an exploration of how AI is reshaping the landscape of employment at DB SCHENKER.

Check out the interview: A Tech Architect Unveils How AI is reshaping Jobs.

Logistics Matters: How do you perceive the impact of artificial intelligence on the future of work at DB SCHENKER?

Maik Schmidt: Modern logistics is driven first and foremost by advances in IT, and AI could be one of the biggest advances that we have seen in decades. On the one hand, I could see AI disrupting several parts of Schenker’s business. Many processes will be much more efficient than they are today thanks to software solutions that were only a dream a few years ago. On the other hand, artificial intelligence will have an impact on almost every role we currently have at Schenker. Everyone will be affected by AI and almost everyone will work with it daily.

There are still limits to AI, even though its capabilities are expanding rapidly. Jobs that require a high degree of nuance, contextual understanding, and adaptability are less likely to be fully automated any time soon.

Logistics Matters: How do you see the interplay between artificial intelligence technologies and human expertise?

Maik Schmidt: The true power of artificial intelligence lies in its ability to complement rather than replace human expertise. AI technologies have the potential to automate repetitive tasks, freeing up human experts to focus on higher-level strategic thinking, creativity, and problem-solving. This not only increases productivity, but also allows humans to engage in tasks that require emotional intelligence, empathy, and critical thinking – qualities that machines cannot replicate.

Logistics Matters: How can artificial intelligence technologies be ethically deployed and regulated in the workplace to ensure they contribute positively to human expertise?

Maik Schmidt: Deploying a technology as powerful as AI requires a high degree of transparency. Employers and vendors should communicate the purpose, capabilities, and limitations of artificial intelligence technologies to employees and users. Transparency fosters trust and empowers individuals to understand and engage with AI effectively.

Human oversight is also crucial. While AI technologies can automate tasks and processes, human oversight remains critical. Even the best artificial intelligence systems are still unreliable in some cases. For critical decisions, humans should always have the final authority and be equipped to intervene when necessary.

Eventually, companies will need to choose the right AI vendor and products. Despite all efforts, most AI systems are still full of bias and prejudice because of the data they were trained with. Therefore, they often produce biased results, which is unacceptable for many applications. Companies like Schenker should require guarantees for ethical training data, and they also must only use neutral data when training their own AI systems.

Logistics Matters: How can organizations such as DB SCHENKER balance the implementation of AI technologies with the preservation of job opportunities?

Logistics Matters: How do you see your job evolving in the next five to ten years considering the advancements in artificial intelligence and automation?

Maik Schmidt: It is hard to predict this because we are at the beginning of this revolution. I expect the elimination of a lot of tedious work, and many of my daily tasks, like reading e-mails or researching information on a topic, will look very different.

In some ways, it will be like the transition phase we had with the advent of the internet. I still remember going to a public library to borrow books I had to read and study to get the information I needed. The internet and search engines made all this much easier and more efficient. AI solutions will simplify these things even further.

No matter what the future will look like, the key for individuals is to stay informed about trends in their industry, invest in lifelong learning, and develop skills complementary to artificial intelligence and automation technologies.

Published: March, 2024