The sudden outburst of the global pandemic forced many organizations to rethink how they operate, enable employees to work remotely, or to respond to increased demand in services/customer queries. As a result, the industry witnessed a significant rise in automation adoption and drove automation right to the top of CTO/CIO plans across enterprise digital transformation.
As a service provider, we witnessed an unexpected upsurge in demand for Intelligent Automation (IA) in the past year, and it is continuing. The automation industry is all set to witness massive growth and we see huge opportunities to offer consulting and enablement services to help businesses reap new benefits. Let’s have a look at our IA forecast for 2021 and beyond that will set you up for future success.
1. Availability of Bots in an online marketplace/Bot Store
As a leading service provider, we predict the increased popularity of ready-to-use plugin Bots. The practice of availability of ready-to-deploy plugins on an online Bot Store/Market place just like we have on Play Store/App Store will see a considerable hike. Having work-ready bots easily available is certainly going to increase automation’s popularity and application in multiple domains.
The industry will embrace this trend with open arms, as ready-to-deploy bots will bring in considerable savings in terms of both money, effort, and time.
2. Open Source is the future
One way to get started with automation (IA/RPA) is to use open-source tools, which have no up-front licensing fees. Open-source tools are an easy way to dip your toe into the automation waters without making a major investment. With increasing interest in automation among businesses; many are interested to try it without investing much initially. Open source will become a popular choice in such a situation.
Though, there are trade-offs between commercial and open-source tools. But when leveraged as an operational component of your automation implementations, open-source tools can be really helpful to improve the overall ROI of your enterprise projects.
As you develop your RPA strategy, we will suggest starting by selecting a simple open-source tool to quickly illustrate RPA’s value. However, as you move from prototype to scaled deployment, you will need something more advanced.
3. Library of standard processes and framework
With the above-mentioned predictions about ready to plug-in bots and open source automation tools, the next obvious forecast seems to be the availability of a library of standard processes, workflows, and framework so that the industry can use standard approved best in the class process when automating any process. Say for instance, when automating a healthcare revenue cycle or invoice processing you can select the standard process to begin your automation steps.
We predict that domain experts will contribute to creating a library of standard processes, workflows, and frameworks that will help first-time users and experts alike to use it for automation projects.
4. Intelligent Automation will replace rule-based automation entirely
While many advanced RPA platforms now offer artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities; however, many organizations are leveraging RPA and AI as two separate entities—one is rules-based and the other is adaptive and predictive. In the future, RPA and analytics will become entirely merged with AI and machine learning (ML), accelerating process mining and discovery.
It is good to have a trained bot, however, there could be situations that will be new and uncertain, and will probably require some decision-making. Hence the need for cognitive intelligence automation comes into the picture.
5. Citizen Developers will accelerate IA adoption
With the advent of so many IA tools, users are feeling enabled to drive key business results. Citizen developers will unquestionably collaborate with IT in a combined model, leveraging intelligent automation to make business workflows automated.
Several organizations, in the new normal, are performing a lot of activities through automation stirred by Citizen Developers in partnership with their IT departments. This is to note that this new approach reduces technical dependency, brings agility, and fast-tracks time-to-value.
A lot of other organizations are trying this approach to accelerate their digital transformation endeavors by leveraging components of IA such as low-code and no-code solutions.
This method will save time and effort between teams and the necessity to transfer knowledge of the overall automated process landscape.
6. Clear role demarcation of OEMs and System Integrators
Increased adoption of automation will also drive clear demarcation of roles between Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and System Integrators (SIs). While OEMs are experts with their specific equipment and processes, and successfully integrate their equipment into production lines, and System Integrators have extensive automation knowledge and experience. Businesses have begun to understand the responsibilities and value add each of these bring in as the two are distinctly different – and yet often complementary.
None of us could have predicted the year we have had in 2020; and the way its inflicted mayhem with businesses across the globe. However, on the bright side, the pandemic also uncovered areas of weakness that can be corrected with intelligent automation solutions. And which otherwise would have taken years to get noticed for any corrective action.
We will see a further evolution in easy-to-deploy and learn IA solutions that will increase adaptability across sectors so that human workers invest less effort in data extraction and processing
While still no one knows what the future will bring, one thing is certain; we are all better prepared to face the future, and every day we are working towards making it even better. Organizations would turn to Intelligent Automation to help create new job opportunities, induce an increase in salaries, and drive global economic growth.