Digital adoption has been accelerating across the globe ever since the pandemic. IT roles are becoming more prominent in organizations and routine tasks are permanently automated.
According to Gartner, by 2025 half of the world population will participate in at least one IoBs (Internet of Behaviours) programme formulated by private, commercial or government organisations.
Within the next year, 40% of all enterprise workloads will be managed by cloud infrastructure and platform services. Also, 40% of Product and platform teams will be using automated change risk analysis with the help of technology pipelines like DevOps to reduce downtime and risk mitigation.
By the year 2025, half of the total enterprises will have artificial intelligence (AI) orchestration platforms at their disposal.
New terms like IoB etc. are the best example of how technology is advancing into new fields and how automation is becoming a normal part of life. IoB programmes make use of big data and IoT to influence customer behaviour. Such programs can help retailers and manufacturers to find the right price for their products and increase sales.
Adoption of automation is not limited by industry. However, the IT, service, retail, marketing, and manufacturing industry are the major sectors that are adopting automation at a faster rate. In fact, by 2025, the majority of the workforce in the manufacturing industry will be replaced by machines, resulting in 20% of all products produced not being touched by any human being before they enter the market. It is estimated that such transformation in the operational process will help organizations to lower their operation cost by 30%.
If all these data points to one thing, it is that the future of businesses depends on automation. Today, digital transformation is not a convenience. It has become a necessity for businesses that want to survive the fearsome competition and changing market.
By 2025, 50% of enterprises will have artificial intelligence orchestration platforms at their disposal.
Should you adopt automation?
Automation helps you reduce manual and routine processes. As a business, it will help you save time and cost along with improving operational efficiency. The application of automation is not limited to cutting down costs and time.
Since technology is so advanced today, you can use automation to collect data on a large scale, analyse them and make real-time decisions. Such opportunities bring tremendous advantages to a business that is competitive and analytical with its long-term goals. If used in the right way, such strategies will help a business to understand their customers better and reach the right audience to promote their products and services.
Because it is handled by technology, the opportunity to scale with automation is limitless. Manual processes will not only slow you down, but they are also prone to trivial errors. Also, the security of data becomes a bigger concern if there are more people involved.
Automation can be adopted by any business since customer support, invoice generation, payroll management, documentation, record-keeping and tracking, reporting etc. are common to all businesses and there are already stacks and tools available in the market.
What can you automate?
While customer support, invoice generation, payroll management, documentation, record-keeping and tracking, reporting etc. are the most common tasks that gave way to automation, there are other opportunities that vary depending on the objective and the nature of the business.
For example, here is a list of automation opportunities available to different businesses.
A batch is a collection of tasks or jobs that are grouped together for execution. Since they are resource-intensive, batch processes are pre-planned and scheduled overnight when the number of other processes is very less. Ever since the technology advanced enough to have more powerful resources in hand, these batch processes are executed frequently by organizations.
The best possible examples are the banking industry and the stock market. Prior to automation, all the documentation and transactions were handled manually and “closing” was scheduled weekly, monthly or even quarterly. As the technology advanced, the interval between each schedule became shorter and nowadays the closing is executed almost daily.
Automating batch scheduling helps organisations to reduce workload and human interaction. It also helps organisations to ensure that the process is executed on time.
Examples of batch process automation tools include IBM workload automation, VisualCron, VisualCron and Redwood RunMyJob.
Business Process Automation (BPA)
Business Process Automation mainly deals with sales, marketing, finance etc. BPA tools are essential for competitive businesses since they help with scaling and growth through digital transformation. Since enterprises deal with file transfer, report generation and distribution, employee onboarding, document approval etc. at a large scale on a day-to-day basis, BPA has become essential in this day and age.
Robotic Process Automation (RPA)
Robotic Process Automation should not be confused with BPA. RPA executes predefined tasks via user interfaces. Each RPA program will have certain rules that it follows to complete the task. Usually, RPA software is trained by a human being to execute the tasks. When ready, such programs can completely replace a human being; hence they are implemented mostly to reduce workload. Recent developments in Machine learning and Artificial Intelligence have enhanced RPA capabilities. Website scraping, screen scraping etc. are the best examples of RPA.
Big Data Automation
Big data automation is implemented to collect, organize, and process large chunks of data in a noticeably short time. It is immensely helpful in dealing with anomaly detection and fraud detection as the data collected can be used to discover patterns. Big data automation along with other technologies like artificial intelligence and machine learning can be used to detect fraud in big casinos and the banking industry.
Digital Process Automation (DPA)
Digital process automation aims to facilities end to end flow of information in a business ecosystem. It integrates applications, business operations, workforce and customers of a business to ensure that data is available in real-time to all the parties involved and as a result customers have a better experience. Digital process automation is implemented knowingly or unknowingly by businesses when they undergo digital transformation. However, without due focus, the advantages of DPA will be limited in scope. The customer support portals offered by most businesses are the best examples of DPA tools.
Business Process Automation and Robotic Process Automation etc. can be limited to a single department or workflow. However, enterprise automation aims to create a single, enterprise-wide automated environment. Enterprise automation is the integration of different automation workflows implemented within an organisation. When they work in tandem, the overall efficiency and productivity of the enterprise is improved.
IT Process Automation
IT Process Automation aims to replace manual IT processes with the help of automated platforms and orchestration. It helps IT staffs to deploy, run, manage, and monitor processes using a single platform. For example, a business may implement Business Process Automation to augment its digital transformation initiative. The required IT infrastructure and process can be automated using IT Process Automation.
Infrastructure & Operations Automation
Infrastructure & Operations Automation mainly deals with the hardware and middleware of a business environment. There is a need to regularly update operating systems, tweaks configuration, and maintain optimal resource usage to avoid downtime and ensure security. An automated platform can be used for this purpose.
Businesses are moving to cloud environments faster than ever before. However, operating and managing cloud resources can still be a challenge for businesses. They must maintain a team who understands the technology to regularly monitor and configure the cloud resources as the demand and traffic can change at any time. Cloud automation aims to automate these tasks and offer a dynamic cloud environment where any changes in demand will be handled in real-time without the need for human interaction. PaaS services like AWS Elastic Beanstalk can help you with cloud automation.