Automation is an inevitability

“You’re either the one that creates the automation or you’re getting automated,” was famously pointed out by Tom Preston-Werner, the superbly indigenous American entrepreneur. Yes! Digitization is creating a catastrophic change across industry verticals, breaking the illusion of AI as a mere concept to making it a more niche market component. It has transformed the way organizations operate. Industry experts have deciphered that, by 2030 artificial intelligence (AI) and automation will contribute to nearly $16 trillion to the global economy. Secondary data also reveals, by the end of 2019, most of the companies globally will incorporate automation in their daily processes.

For companies to survive the wrath of competition, there is an inherent need to refine and automate the work process. Innovation and reorganization will prove indispensable and as digitization touches all the different realms of life, companies are bound to advance and transform themselves in sync with the trend. The following automation trends are distinctly positioned to create a visible mark in 2019:

Involving Natural Language Processing (NLP)

The advancements in Machine Learning would, in future, become the driving force in the growth of the NLP market. We have successfully reached a point where Amazon Echo and Alexa constitute a major portion in our daily lives. Both, individuals and organizations alike, have developed greater interest in NLP which has contributed to major advances in speech recognition and language generation. If you consider a situation, where a bot using NLP will be empowered to act like a human exhibiting empathy, while at the same time responding to a recognized task, it will definitely create a life-changing experience for the user.

Automation and its undeniable impacts

Automation is inevitable, by and large, for all companies globally. A company, at present, can use AI and automation either for hiring or marketing its products or for the usual day to day operations. However, it is essential to create a receptive customer base, who wouldn’t be disturbed by such extensive usage of automation. Not all consumers are aware of the concept of automation and its major implications in daily life; thus, its considerable adaptation is far from reality.

Introducing AI without oriented customers, is ethically incorrect and can lead to mistrust among customers in future. With the right to information in place, consumers are increasingly becoming aware of their rights and demand a clear, transparent AI algorithm. There is no denying of the fact that individuals who share their personal information will at some point in time demand visibility on the method of information usage. Transparency is 100% necessary to build a trustworthy bond between a company and its customers.

Merging of technologies

With successful automation of various projects, AI is slowly getting integrated with technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT), Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solution, Blockchain and Analytics. Although such absolute convergence will be time-consuming and expensive, yet business leaders across the globe are aggressively considering opportunities to ensure exemplary results. Automation along with data-driven decisions can improve the overall scope of business.

Leaders taking ownership of AI strategy

The potential of automation is huge, yet there exists a gap in understanding the different deployment scenarios to be able to create the maximum impact. Experts opine, to gain momentum from automation usage, the AI strategy for every business should clearly reflect from the top management. Business leaders are expected to owe the responsibility of distributing AI strategy across the organization to change the overall dynamics. Entrepreneurs have started to prioritize automation by initiating training programs to help employees upskill so that the technology can be optimally utilized.

Automation of business would also involve investment in both, the software and training programs, to solidify the position of AI in the company. A relevant report generated by McAfee confirmed, on an average an enterprise uses 1,935 cloud apps, indicating a 15% increase over the last year. This surge has encouraged enterprises to dedicate a head or leader of business systems to formulate strategic investment decisions so that appropriate solutions can be ideally identified to tread the path of automation.

Combining RPA, AI and ML

Secondary research suggests that the economic impact of Robotic Process Automation (RPA) will reach approximately 6.7 trillion dollars by 2025. Currently, the role of RPA is grossly mundane and involves repetitive tasks. It is evolving due to digitalization, and intelligent process automation (IPA) is the result of such progression. Once AI and ML are integrated with RPA, it can be programmed to manage more complex tasks. It will, then become more capable of identifying behavioral changes along with pattern recognition, boosting the adoption of automation. Also, the integration of tools will empower the organization to save time and effort on end-to-end solutions. This will substantially automate the major chunk of manual processing, which can thereafter organically evolve into a completely automated process. As we all would agree, a consolidated software solution is far more appealing than their disparate counterparts.

Automation – Key role in decision making

Increased dependence on AI to automate decision making is a dynamic development that all companies are looking forward to. Barring reducing the burden of decision making from both, entrepreneurs and employees, automation will ensure a process that will highlight transparency (decisions without any bias), seamlessness and error-free functioning. For example, automation will be able to decide whether a refund should be meted out to a customer, after careful analysis of the transaction history, that too with more precision and promptness than humans. Automation software can by itself take a decision and execute the process. In fact, IT automation is currently moving towards the self-learning mode, where it takes the liberty to test, monitor, self-learn on the basis of use cases. This, consequently, enhances the business process and deliver robust results, marking a futuristic shift towards digital transformation. According to secondary research, 20% of the organizations in the U.S is expected to implement AI-based operations by the end of this year, to reduce manual burden of processes and optimize automation.

Edge technology and augmentation

The edge technology is a step ahead to enhance the scope of both, resources and assets, to create resilience and responsiveness across organizations, leading them towards automation. With each passing year, more cognitive technologies are put to use in the form of intelligent tools such as IBM’s Watson and Salesforce’s Einstein. Cognitive technologies can locate patterns that can otherwise be overlooked by humans, expediting the implementation process of automation (although they might involve creativity).

Reforming automation and enhancing the experience

Initially, automation centered around automating repetitive and manual work. According to a third party research, such automation is still used by a company’s back-office. However, the concept of automation is transforming to a holistic notion and along with creating a better experience for customers, employee experience has also become the focal point.

Scaling of automation usage

According to third party research, only 16% of companies could scale their use of automation. Automation requires extensive coding and scripting, which is why there is a need for a skilled employee to maneuver through it. Infact, the research confirmed that 57% of the organizations lack a skilled workforce to introduce automation within the enterprise.

The Last Word

No organization will want to dry off from competition. To ensure survival and fare well through the competitive path, transformation is essential, and it can effectively be brought in by automation. Leaders should have clarity on the need of the hour and understand the importance of adopting automation to avoid extinction. Statistical reviews clearly highlight the positive impacts of automation, validates the incorporation of virtual assistants and related innovations and their far-reaching implications on business professionals. Are you ready to defend your moves as digital disruption is on a mission to keep slaying?