Automation has become imperative for businesses to maintain the competitiveness and agility required in today’s ever-changing economy. A new study shows that enterprises prioritising the development of their intelligent automation (IA) capabilities see the most improvements in operational efficiency, employee productivity and customer experience, which are the key drivers for intelligent automation adoption.
The study, using the Everest Group’s Pinnacle Model, defined businesses that achieved these superior outcomes thanks to their advanced IA capabilities as “Pinnacle Enterprises.” These businesses were found to:
- Generate 2.3x the return on investment and 3.7x the cost savings from IA initiatives compared to enterprises with lower levels of automation
- Benefit from a 62% overall improvement in operational metrics when compared to pre-automation figures. These include higher employee productivity, operational efficiency and quality, turnaround time, process governance and regulatory compliance – all key to overall business performance
- Almost double their revenue over 2.5 years, highlighting IA’s boosting effect on business operations
- Improve customer experience by 55% and employee experience by 52%
IA is about much more than making businesses operate faster and at reduced error rates. It’s about utilising the full potential of human talent. It’s about enabling businesses to reach further and achieve outcomes and goals they never realised possible while building organisational agility and resilience.
Pinnacle Enterprises were also shown to consider citizen development a key part of their IA strategy, with 90% investing in upskilling programs and innovation challenges. This is particularly critical given the current record numbers of employee dissatisfaction. By enabling employees to do more value-adding work, advanced automation can contribute to their sense of purpose and satisfaction with work and in turn promote talent retention. As a result, half of Pinnacle Enterprises have been able to improve their employee experience by an average of more than 60%, compared to pre-automation figures. Only 11% of other enterprises reported the same results.
This latest study highlights that RPA alone lacks the ability to deliver the full potential of automation. While all companies that invested in automation saw some improvements, Pinnacle Enterprises differentiated themselves by choosing to integrate advanced IA technologies with the highest level of capabilities, including IDP, process mining and conversational AI – leading to substantial outcome gaps.
Says one survey participant, head of the digital transformation & strategy of global business services at an industrial manufacturing firm: “Initially, [our] cost savings from IA were low – approximately US$10,000 per year. However, these have grown significantly and are now over US$1 million per year, after five to six years. We have also been able to create significant FTE capacity and employees have been able to take up more higher-value work.”
This study illustrates the transformative power of intelligent automation with advanced capabilities. We believe in investing in people and these results show what can be accomplished with in-house development through various resources like online training courses that up-and re- skill existing employees. I hope this study shines a light on the strategic and human impact of intelligent automation and its importance as businesses move forward.