Why do Analysts focus so much on HyperAutomation or Intelligent Automation?

May 17, 2023
  • Microsoft
  • artificial intelligence & RPA

Breaking down silos with technology: a post-lockdown imperative... The world changed indelibly in 2020 and the impacts of the great lockdown have left their mark on the working world also...

Breaking down silos with technology: a post-lockdown imperative 

The world changed indelibly in 2020 and the impacts of the great lockdown have left their mark on the working world also. Businesses faced huge pressure as they essentially had to change how they worked overnight, and in doing so turned towards technology to help them in their quest of breaking down silos and working disparately. HFS Research found below that cybersecurity and process automation (including RPA) were amongst the fastest growing technologies as a response. 

While RPA (Robotic Process Automation) gets most of the coverage, it’s in fact “Hyperautomation” or “Intelligent Automation” which the analysts tend to focus on. 

What is meant by Hyperautomation or Intelligent Automation?

Essentially what is meant is the sum of the parts of automation technology, with RPA being a key (but not the only) part of the puzzle, alongside other automation technologies such as API Automation (sometimes referred to as Digital Process Automation or DPA), Business Process Management (BPM), Artificial Intelligence and Process or Task Mining. 

RPA is the newest of the technologies and therefore receives the most airtime, benefitting from its major recent advancements and the particular success of UIPath, Blue Prism and Automation Anywhere.

This is also not forgetting Softomotive, Mulesoft and Signavio acquired by Microsoft, Salesforce and SAP respectively. 

RPA as a term first came about in 2002 in a white paper by HFS and commissioned by Blue Prism and has since gone on to becoming a massive standalone industry with the noticeable success of all the major players above.  

How should we view automation?

While the analysts each have reports and magic quadrants on each of the technologies above, automation really is best viewed holistically. IT firstly allows us to apply the full elements of the technology to our processes allowing for much greater coverage than a single technology point of view could provide. 

Secondly it allows companies to fully benefit and maximise the technology allowing us to apply the best technology (or best tool from the kit) for each particular step of a process. This has huge benefits in terms of efficiency, time savings and cost. It also means that with a wiser choice (and more robust technology applied) that a process is a lot less likely to break down over something simple like a password change, a permissions request or a change in the user interface. The more breakdowns there are the higher the cost in maintenance and therefore ultimately the more our ROI diminishes. 

Overall the choice of technology is a key decision in terms of overall efficiency and coverage, and therefore having a more holistic platform allows for more flexibility as seen in the example of invoice processing below. 

The benefits in choosing the right implementation partner

On top of choosing the right technology the choice of implementation partner is central to overall success

Firstly, there is a lot of groundwork to go into discovery, understanding the highest priority processes to automate, as well as the stakeholders involved as well as the applications and technologies. This can be done quantitatively (backed by data and metrics to understand expected ROI), and also done qualitatively involving people in the overall change management to make the right business decisions. 

During implementation there are a number of other factors to consider including overall security and governance, and what blend of citizen development and ownership is right for the business with the guardrails in place.   

Working with the right implementation partner not only helps achieve a faster value realisation and understanding of ROI but also ensures the right foundations are in place for the longer-term success with a higher coverage of use cases and overall value from automation programmes. 

With automation universally top of mind for C-Level, and with an ever-expanding field of choice, ensuring the right partnership is in place on both technology and implementation is becoming more and more relevant     

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