Automation no longer a distant dream, with 75% of executives expecting disruption in next 12 months, says GlobalData

The COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on the world of work has had a profound effect on the development of robotics and automation, according to GlobalData. No longer a distant dream, the leading data and analytics company notes that three quarters of executives responding to a survey* commented that they expected technologies such as 5G, cloud, Internet of Things (IoT), cybersecurity and artificial intelligence (AI) to disrupt their sector in the next 12 months.

Charlotte Dunlap, Principal Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “The pandemic has shown us just how vital intelligent automation and robotics advancements are for the new world of work. They are transforming traditional business processes into smooth, automatic workflows—vastly improving customer experience. The result will be a new workforce, whereby robotic process automation (RPA) replaces repetitive and mundane jobs while humans cover tasks that require personal interactions and high productivity.”

While robotics’ core heritage has always been RPA, more capabilities are coming to light, ranging from process mining and intelligent document processing to API integration (where two apps are connected together).

Dunlap continues: “Of the capabilities gaining popularity, process mining is certainly the most noteworthy. Process mining is the process of extracting and discovering patterns in data and turning these into actionable insights. In a nutshell, process mining helps operations identify hot spots where employee efforts are being wasted and/or processes are operating inefficiently and need reengineering.”

As a result of process mining’s progress, an increasingly popular use case for RPA is in intelligent document processing (IDP), which leverages AI and RPA to improve organizations’ operational efficiencies around document-intensive workflow processes.

Dunlap adds: “The most compelling about emerging robotics innovations is how relevant enterprises consider the technology for addressing their current, not future, digital and transformation issues. Nearly 75% of executives surveyed by GlobalData (Emerging Technology Trends Survey) said automation technologies will disrupt their industry over the next 12 months, leading the pack over other critical technologies included in the survey included cybersecurity, AI, 5G, cloud computing, and IoT.”

* Survey is from: GlobalData’s October 2020 Emerging Technology Trends Survey of more than 1,700 senior executives worldwide. Almost 75% of the executives surveyed by GlobalData said automation technologies will disrupt their industry.

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