From technology implementation and automation in manufacturing to personal applications in our homes, it’s difficult to escape automation and its proliferation. With that in mind, the following are some of the automation trends we might see in the new year across the board as far as business and enterprise are concerned.
New Options in RPA
Robotic process automation or RPA has already seen substantial growth over the past few years. Salesforce recently added enhanced offerings, and there will also be new vendors likely to enter the process automation market next year.
Robotic process automation is software technology that simplifies building, deploying, and managing software robots. These software robots can act like humans as they interact with software and digital systems.
For example, they might be able to extract data, but without the slowdowns that would come if a human were doing it.
Robotic process automation helps streamline workflows, in turn contributing to more profitability, responsiveness, and flexibility for organizations.
CIOs Taking Control of Automation
According to McKinsey, automation is the top tech trend above all others. A recent Gartner survey found more than 80% of respondents were planning to continue or increase automation spending.
Chief information officers or CIOs are coming in to develop enterprise-level strategy approaches.
Investments will continue growing, and with that growth, boards will want to ensure it’s being spent strategically.
A report from SWZD found most organizations think revenue is going to come back in 2022, and as a result, many are anticipating a budget increase. Sixty-four percent of enterprises say they plan to raise their IT budgets. Forty-five percent of small-to-midsize businesses said the same.
The same research shows there’s likely going to be a push for multi-year modernization projects, and 70% of enterprise respondents said with that would come increased spending on IT automation technology.
CIOs are often being utilized as a part of this strategic spending.
CIOs will probably focus on how to standardize automation technology and which organizational capabilities they should expand on.
Many CIOs will also be charged with looking more at the revenue side of things perhaps than ever before. For example, how are their automation initiatives going to support new business opportunities broadly and also revenue growth simultaneously?
A Human-Focused Approach to Applications and Systems
Large enterprises currently have, on average more than 170 applications that employees move between to do their jobs. A lot of employees’ day-to-day time is spent simply toggling between these applications. It can be impactful in so many ways. For example, it’s draining employees’ sense of creativity and productivity. This burden also affects productivity at the enterprise level.
Organizations will have to think a lot about how they’re using automation in terms of the human side of things.
For example, there is something many organizations are doing or on the cusp of doing, which is adding another automation layer on top of their applications.
The layer is a go-between for employees and the applications they’re using to do their work.
An additional layer will help standardize and centralize processes and governance. Humans, at the same time, will be able to work without some of the burdens of a fragmented technology landscape.
Semantic technology uses formalized semantics as a means of helping AI systems understand language and then process information in a way similar to humans.
The semantic technology can then store and retrieve information based on logic and meaning.
There’s a building of relationships between data in different sources and formats for contextual relevance.
Enterprises can use this technology to infer relationships and extract insights from substantial raw data sets, even when it’s in varying formats and comes from different sources.
Organizations get faster and less expensive access to data, and then they can use it to empower decisions.
Relevance of the Enterprise Metaverse
Finally, the metaverse is a shared 3D virtual space. Mark Zuckerburg has already said he wants to lead the way in terms of the metaverse but what does that mean, and what are the implications for business?
Businesses will have to think about how they will engage with customers in the metaverse. A priority will also be identifying opportunities for advertising that make sense.
Anheuser-Busch InBev, which is the largest brewer in the world, is already using metaverse applications. The company is creating digital models of its breweries and supply chain. These sync in real-time with the physical world. That allows brew masters to conduct quality control and adjust their brewing process.