Digital transformation is a concept that’s constantly shifting shape. As new technologies are trialled, lessons are learned and businesses adapt their thinking, priorities are evolving.
After research revealed that more than 50% of digital transformation efforts stalled during 2018, Forrester predicted that 2019 will be “a year in which transformation will go pragmatic”. This involves a move, in many industries, towards digital investments that can deliver tangible business value.
One technology approach that can fit snugly into the “pragmatic” category is robotic process automation (RPA) – provided it’s deployed to run the right types of tasks, as part of a sound business optimisation strategy. When used in tandem with other process re-engineering efforts, RPA can yield significant benefits.
Software Robotic Process Automation (or RPA for short) is used to automate every-day, rules-based tasks. RPA solutions, often referred to as ‘bots’, can be configured to manage mundane business activities independently and in many cases, with little or no human intervention.
Business optimisation through technology is a focus area for many organisations today. According to Brian Kropp, group vice president of Gartner’s HR practice, more than two-thirds of business leaders believe that their organisations could lose their competitive edge if they do not achieve significant digital transformation by 2020.
Recent years have seen automation technologies like Robotic Process Automation (RPA) being implemented across every industry. While this technology has many business benefits – such as boosting efficiency and productivity and saving costs – there are growing concerns that workplace automation will make human labour redundant; leaving employees without work, and businesses without consumers.
With RPA being such a powerful tool that solves many business problems, it is understandable that people have many questions and with the abundance of information out there we realised it could feel like a bit of a mine field. We therefore wanted to offer delegates a platform on which to talk freely and directly about RPA in an open, face-to-face setting, see how the software works first-hand, discuss the business drivers and, most importantly, ask those probing questions that search engines can’t answer.
In the age of digital optimisation, it’s no surprise that businesses are always on the lookout for ways to tighten up their operations, streamline processes and improve efficiency, both in terms of time and money. Robotic process automation (RPA) is one of the key technologies that has risen to meet this demand and as the bedrock of all digitised operations in your company, it’s logical that the IT department should be one of the first to embrace this new innovation.
There has been an explosion of automation technologies in every area of life and business over the last few years – and concurrently a shockwave of questions, fear and excitement, optimism and pessimism, about how this will impact society, particularly work.
Demand for robotic process automation (RPA) solutions continues to escalate. Research firm Forrester predicts that RPA market growth will reach USD 2.9 billion in 2021, up from just USD 250 million in 2016. But before you put software robotics front and centre of your business optimisation strategy, there’s a caveat. According to the same Forrester report, “to be sustained, RPA must offer more than plugging gaps in legacy systems”. Like any technology, RPA has its capabilities and shortcomings – and these need to be understood in the context of your business as well as the broader process automation landscape.
Robotic process automation has been getting a lot of sensationalised media coverage lately with threats of mass unemployment making the headlines several times. The thing is, whilst it’s exciting to think of shiny robots joining you at the water cooler, that’s not what RPA is about! It’s quite boring actually, compared to the flashy computer-generated images of robots you see floating around today (of which we are guilty too).