From the onset of Covid-19, businesses had to battle with an unprecedented period of uncertainty. As social restrictions and lockdowns ground the world to a halt, it became difficult to plan things effectively and persist with decisions confidently.
Naturally, many managers tried to ride out the storm and wait for things to normalize. However, as we can now see, it’s difficult for businesses to return to what they deemed ‘normal’.
Just like the rest of our history, people have used innovation to power through these challenging times. Digital transformation initiatives like Intelligent Automation have helped businesses fight through this year’s financial crisis and stay relevant in an ever-competitive market.
Previously, executives used Artificial Intelligence merely as a buzzword, but combined with automation, AI now paves the way to the future. In this article, we will explain what AI-driven intelligent automation tells us about the future of business.
Automation Is Here to Stay
Before the advent of Covid-19, automation was increasingly becoming a part of businesses. Even in 2017, 80% of executives knew that automation saves three hours of work every day and they were gradually adopting it.
However, after the pandemic, the demand for automated solutions has increased even more. Social restrictions have forced companies to accelerate their automation efforts. Because of this, businesses in the future have to prepare their staff for the upcoming digital shift.
They must reform how they train their employees and develop a workforce compatible with a knowledge-driven economy. In other words, they must rethink their strategy and reorganizethe company culture to create an environment primed towards automation.
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Content-Centric Process Automation
Since most companies in the future will strive for automated workflow, we can expect a decline in laborious and manual tasks. Workers will be valued for their ability to work with insights and knowledge.
Delays caused by manual processes result in a higher operational cost, something that hurts businesses significantly. AIIM research discovered that organizations spend an extensive amount of time searching for content. Therefore, it’s plausible to think content-centric process automation will become a common practice amongst businesses.
Content-centric process automation is the key to efficiency. It can help businesses leverage resources productively and decrease the amount of time wasted in manual processes. That said, automation alone isn’t sufficient to make this work for us. We will need intelligent automation to fuel processes with useful insights.
Intelligent Automation Is the Next Phase for IT
As companies strive for intelligence-driven solutions, businesses will increasingly value people who have the skills to work with AI and automation. Technologies like intelligent automation will create a hiring spree in IT departments and beyond.
Similarly, departments such as finance and HR will also become automation-driven. Nowadays, businesses are adopting bleeding-edge technologies like Invoice Process Automation to optimize how they function. As time passes, this trend will continue to increase.
Likewise, businesses in the future will have to reduce the dependency on IT experts for tasks like configuration. They must develop and incorporate easy-to-use solutions and become more agile in their approach.
4 Technologies That Pave the Way for the Future of Businesses
1. Robotic Process Automation (RPA)
RPA is an extension of intelligent automation that works best when combined with cognitive document automation. RPA allows us to create a hybrid workforce of humans and machines, where machines replace repetitive time-consuming activities.
Collectively, CDA and RPA automate both physical and electronic document & data capture. This means that it minimizes operational costs and improves the productivity of your employees, generating more ROI for you, as a result. Therefore, it’s clear that RPA will be a major force of change in the coming years.
2. Context-Driven Productivity Robotic Process Automation (RPA)
Context-Driven Productivity or CDP is an innovative way of organizing information from multiple data resources effectively. It uses both internal and external data sources to give organizations a complete picture of their processes.
CDP transforms disparate flat data (data stored in legacy silos such as emails, spreadsheets, PDFs, and even relational databases) into meaningful semantic data.
Semantic data is contextually driven information that gives a 360-degree view of a dataset’s key features and background. It helps both humans and machines understand multiple data points and their relationships.
Knowing the context of data helps companies gain deeper insights with the help of Artificial Intelligence and machine learning. From these insights, businesses can boost productivity and efficiency and gain an advantage over their competition.
Collecting data from disparate sources and enriching it with context, allows you to gain end-to-end process visibility and enjoy quantifiable, data-driven results. With increased productivity, your company optimizes business processes and increases customer and employee satisfaction.
Ultimately, CDP helps you make the most of semantic data extraction and knowledge graph technologies.
3. Account Payable Automation
Account Payable (AP) automation has been a consistent accounts payable trend in recent years. Although many companies are yet to implement AP automation, the disrupting role of this technology is encouraging a growing number of businesses to adopt it.
We can see this phenomenon by looking at the CAGR of the AP Automation market, which is growing at a rate of 11%. What used to be considered a luxury for large enterprises has seen rapid adoption in various industries. Experts predict that the AP automation market alone will reach a market size of $3 billion by 2024.
One major reason behind this is that Accounts Payable influences the day-to-day business operations of almost every major industry. These processes have a direct impact on cash flow management; are responsible for maintaining vendor relationships, and provide security against fraud. Therefore, we can expect businesses in the future to make it a permanent part of their processes.
Low-Code Development Platforms
Most organizations must refine and redesign their processes before they throw AI and robotics into the mix. However, doing that is not particularly easy.
This is why businesses, we can expect future businesses to transition to a low-code application development platform. In these environments, businesses will leverage custom build applications that support automated workflows and digital forms, making way for improved intelligent automation.
To be successful, businesses must prioritize automation and AI and make the most of their combined strength through intelligent automation. A strategy built around intelligent automation can help create a future-proof foundation for your business.