Human vs. Bot Employees: Navigating the Evolving Landscape of Workforce Efficiency

In the fast-paced world of business, the distinction between human and bot employees is becoming increasingly important. During the training I ran on Excel for accountants, I’ve shared why tools like Excel can be the perfect assistants – (1) they don’t argue, (2) they execute tasks with precise adherence to given instructions, and (3) they don’t have feelings or biases. In contrast, human employees embody qualities that are the exact opposite of their bot counterparts.

This comparison highlights the stark differences between our human workforce and their bot counterparts, each bringing unique strengths and challenges to the table. Let’s delve in deeper.

They don’t argue

Managers often lean towards avoiding arguments within their teams, a tendency driven largely by the desire to preserve harmony and operational efficiency. I’ve personally witnessed how counterproductive unconstructive arguments can be in the workplace, particularly in larger organizations. Arguments made for the mere sake of being heard, without any substantive basis, can significantly disrupt workflows.

In sectors like accounting, where handling large volumes of transactions is the norm, the non-argumentative nature of bots can be a game-changer in terms of productivity. Consider a scenario where a team processes thousands, if not millions, of transactions monthly. Even a minor percentage of these transactions leading to arguments could result in hundreds of wasted man-hours. These arguments necessitate additional resources and efforts to resolve conflicts, maintain service levels, and ensure results are delivered efficiently. In contrast, bot employees, programmed to follow instructions without debate, become instrumental in enhancing workplace productivity.

However, the argumentative nature of human employees should not be viewed purely in a negative light. Humans argue because they think. Their ability to engage in constructive debates is a testament to their critical thinking skills. This capacity enables them to challenge supervisors, processes, policies, and rules, thereby making meaningful contributions to discussions and introducing diverse perspectives. Such abilities are crucial for breaking the cycle of groupthink and spurring innovation.

While consistently shunning arguments can lead to stagnation and missed opportunities for improvement, engaging in constructive debates is vital. It’s through these thoughtful exchanges that existing ideas and processes are challenged, leading to enhanced decision-making and strategic outcomes. Constructive arguments play a pivotal role in business success, human evolution, cognitive advancement, and overall economic growth.

They execute tasks with precise adherence to given instructions

Bot employees are executors, exemplifying precision and strict adherence to instructions. They are fundamentally designed to focus on task completion rather than value addition. Their primary strength is in carrying out tasks exactly as directed, without deviation. This attribute is particularly valuable in tasks involving repetitive processing, detailed data analysis, and firm compliance with specific guidelines. In fields like accounting, automation tools efficiently manage large volumes of transactions, offering accuracy and speed that surpass human capabilities.

The reliability of bots stems from their lack of fatigue and their inability to overlook a step. This predictability and consistency are what make them invaluable in scenarios where precision is paramount. It’s important to note that when errors do occur, they are typically due to programming flaws or user errors, meaning bot employees do not bear responsibility or accountability for these errors.

In contrast, human employees bring creativity and the ability to think outside the box. They can interpret complex situations, understand nuances, and provide insights that a bot simply cannot. Humans are not just task executors; they’re trainers, thinkers, innovators, and problem solvers. They approach a task, understand its context, and adapt their approach based on changing circumstances. This ability to think critically and creatively sets humans apart in the workforce.

When human employees make mistakes, they take ownership, bearing the consequences and learning from these experiences to improve future outcomes. This ability to recognise, accept, and learn from errors is a key differentiator between human and bot employees, reflecting the unique value that humans bring to the workplace in terms of growth and adaptability.

They don’t have feelings or biases

As I advanced in my career, I received more responsibilities, including team management, despite my preference for being a sole contributor rather than a manager. Managing a team involves handling the emotional ups and downs of each member, a task I dislike. Conducting performance reviews was particularly challenging for me. Being honest and direct often felt risky, as it could have resulted in receiving numerous resignation letters the next day.

One reason bot employees do not make mistakes is their lack of emotional feelings. Take ChatGPT, for example. When reviewing its own work, it is entirely objective, without shyness or hesitation in admitting shortcomings. If a bot produces an invalid or incorrect output, it can be corrected by providing new instructions. Bots process these corrections without any negative emotional reaction. They do not feel sad, nor do they complain about a constantly changing boss or work environment.

Perhaps the best way to eliminate corruption is to replace human decision-makers with bots. Set the parameters, and you can be confident that bots will not exhibit favouritism or personal bias. In the accounting world, bots would not approve credit terms if the customer fails to meet the requirements, even if the customer is the boss’s relative. They act objectively, without fear or favour, showing zero tolerance for exceptions. This impartiality ensures adherence to set standards and protocols, increasing productivity and reducing the likelihood of errors or corruption.

Bot employees are indifferent to mundane and repetitive tasks, displaying neither demoralisation nor enthusiasm. They perform tasks without the need for team bonding, career counselling, or an engaging work environment.

However, bots don’t contribute to workplace happiness. Unlike humans, they cannot influence the emotional atmosphere of a workplace. Human employees bring emotional intelligence, which is more important than one might initially think. This ability greatly contributes to employee satisfaction, as emotionally intelligent leadership and colleagues create a supportive and engaging work culture. It also affects customer and vendor relationships. Emotionally intelligent interactions often lead to higher satisfaction rates, loyalty, and long-term business relationships. This human-specific skillset is crucial for the overall health and success of an organisation.

Support from team members is vital in building resilience and aiding self-healing after failures. Unlike bots, which require reprogramming for new situations, humans naturally learn from their experiences, including setbacks. Overcoming challenges and supporting each other through failures not only strengthens individual resilience but also improves the team’s ability to achieve greater success. Human adaptability and emotional support within teams are key factors in personal and collective growth, surpassing the capabilities of bots in these areas.

Collaboration: The Best of Both Worlds

In the realm of automation, the crucial question isn’t about choosing between human or bot employees but rather discerning which tasks are most suitable for each. It’s about harnessing the strengths of both to drive greater efficiency and innovation. For example, bots can manage data processing, while humans can concentrate on strategy and client relationships.

This cooperative approach ensures that routine and repetitive tasks are automated, enabling human employees to focus on areas where they contribute the most value. It’s not about supplanting humans with bots but about augmenting human capabilities through automation.

Staying Relevant: The Human Edge

For human employees, staying relevant in an increasingly automated landscape involves focusing on skills that bots cannot replicate. Emotional intelligence, critical thinking, creativity, and interpersonal abilities are domains where humans have the upper hand. By refining these skills, human employees can ensure they complement, rather than compete with, their bot colleagues.

If a human employee exhibits the three characteristics of a bot employee, the natural question for employers becomes, “Why do I need a human?” Soon, either a bot could replace the job, or another human employee might take over the role.


The evolving workforce landscape is being transformed by the synergy between human and bot employees. This partnership, where each plays to their strengths, is leading to a more efficient, innovative, and dynamic workplace. Human creativity, critical thinking, and emotional intelligence, combined with the precision, consistency, and emotionless efficiency of bots, create unparalleled productivity and innovation.

This balance between human ingenuity and bot efficiency is not just beneficial, it’s essential for the future of work. By harnessing these diverse strengths, we ensure that both human and bot employees are utilised optimally. This approach not only enhances efficiency and productivity but also fosters a more balanced, fulfilling, and innovative work environment.

As we navigate this mixed landscape, our focus should be on collaboration and mutual enhancement. We’re creating a workforce that is not only efficient but also resilient and adaptable to the ever-changing demands of the business world. The future of work lies in recognising and harnessing the unique capabilities of both humans and bots, ensuring a harmonious and productive coexistence.

Contact us to explore how we can make your accounting processes more efficient and effective. Don’t let outdated methods limit you. Transform your accounting with us and maximise every minute of your accountants’ time. Reach out now to experience the change we can bring!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *