Business Process Automation Trends | 5 mins read

5 Business Process Automation Trends

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Lauren Christiansen

By Lauren Christiansen

Business process automation has come a very long way over the course of the last century. In 1946, automobile industry personnel first used the term automation to explain the escalated use of unmanned appliances. While primarily spoken of in the manufacturing context, more experts now apply the term automation to any number of computerized systems.

In the mid to late 20th century, everything from the digital computer to data-storage systems to expansive software systems came to be. Successful businesses first tried to replace a few repetitive tasks with automated solutions. Nowadays, entire business models are automated, and organizations are capable of automating the vast majority of their processes.

With robotic process automation and artificial intelligence on the rise, many organizations show no signs of slowing down. As the year progresses, companies will need to reevaluate their intelligence solutions and business processes they want to automate. They will need to re-scale for long-term governance and implement a collaborative strategy that can maintain RPA software.

Read ahead for some of the top emerging technology trends to look out for.

1 business process automation trends scaling rpa 1623277472 3853

Robotic process automation (RPA) is growing at a rapid rate. According to case studies, the fastest-growing technologies include RPA solutions. While some companies have the means to implement a few robotic processes, few are ready to employ them across their organizations. 50% of organizations have less than 10 robotic systems, while only 2% have scaled to the level they should.

One possible reason for not scaling up is that companies have poor utilization rates for existing bots. Many businesses aren't sure how to use their robots in a way that brings a return on investment. Only 29% of organizations are fully satisfied with their existing robotic processes. Companies will have to find ways to improve existing bots to derive the most benefit if they want to stay relevant in the next few years.

  • From 2016 to 2021, the robotic process automation market grew from $250 million to $2.9 billion
  • 53% of companies have begun their RPA journey, which is expected to grow to 72% by 2023
  • Workers spend an average of 69 days per year on repetitive tasks that could be automated
  • Professionals take an average of 18 minutes to locate a manual document, which is 20-40% of their time.

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2 business process automation trends prioritizing rpa orchestration 1623277472 9158

Since the digital transformation, many organizations have struggled to keep up with new RPA software. The biggest challenge is learning how to manage and orchestrate robotic solutions so they integrate with existing processes. In some cases, entire processes need to be revamped to align with new automation trends.

With RPA, there are entirely new workflows and a need for new infrastructure to automate processes. When businesses implement new cloud-based automate software, it takes time and resources. Ironically, saving time and resources is why businesses choose to automate in the first place. Some workers need to spend more time monitoring these new processes than they did initially. Companies will have to prioritize RPA orchestration and improve training to simplify this process.

3 business process automation trends prioritizing process discovery 1623277472 1071

Along with prioritizing RPA orchestration is the need to focus on implementing better processes. Automation technology is great if existing processes are already streamlined. If business processes are outdated and don't integrate with robotic process software, then they need to be revisited.

Business leaders will have to map out all of their processes and pinpoint inefficiencies or elements that won't integrate with RPA solutions. For example, a data entry task may be more inefficient if automated because it requires some complex thinking and an eye for nuance. An organization would either need to revamp the way the data entry process works or use a human to monitor the process.

Many RPA experts help businesses drill down into processes and discern those that need to be automated and those that don't. Experts believe that more and more companies will rely on these RPA specialists to implement process discovery.

  • Administration - Hiring new employees and processing paperwork
  • Manufacturing - Creating products to sell to customers
  • Operations - Everything that is required to secure an order, deliver a service, and bill to customers
  • Procurement - Steps required to secure parts and materials to create product
  • Sales and Operations Planning - All steps requited to plan inventory levels based on customer and market demand

4 business process automation trends broadening an automation lens 1623277472 4982

When companies drill down into their business processes, they will find some uncomfortable truths. Unfortunately, many outdated processes are time-consuming because they are poorly designed, and not because they aren't automated.

Companies that automate poorly designed manual processes will have more problems than they did beforehand. It's not enough to solve a repetitive task problem. Businesses need to consider whether the actual process makes sense, is secure, and is necessary.

As more organizations do this, it will force them to broaden their automation lens. By eliminating unnecessary tasks, they will increase efficiency and minimize errors that lead to wasted resources.

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5 business process automation trends increased focus on governance 1623277472 8099

A broadening vision into automation and a desire to up-scale robotic process automation will change the way businesses view governance. Governance is defined as the systems and processes by which a company is controlled and operates. Robotic process governance includes the employees, processes, and systems used to maintain automated solutions.

Because RPA is fairly new, there has been less control over all of the automation software that different employees use throughout an organization. Experts believe companies will create strike teams that involve various personnel who will create ideas to improve automation pipelines. These pipelines are a place for team members to contribute automation ideas. The strike team will then review them, go through process discovery, and come up with an implementation strategy. This is a streamlined approach to find, implement, and improve automated solutions.

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In conclusion, here are the top business process automation trends to watch out for -

  • Experts believe that businesses will have a hard time scaling up for automation technologies. They will need to improve utilization rates and improve existing processes to do so.
  • RPA orchestration will be prioritized within the next few years. There will be an emphasis on solving the time-consuming process of training individuals to operate bots. Furthermore, businesses will focus on process discovery and revamping outdated processes. This will improve future RPA efforts and prevent wasted time and resources.
  • Companies will drill down into process discovery and broaden their automation lens. They will stop automating a few manual processes and take a big-picture approach to solve complex issues.
  • Organizations will increase their focus on RPA governance. They may use strike teams in conjunction with automation idea pipelines to implement new automated processes.

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