Camunda Study: 9 in 10 IT Leaders Say Process Automation is Critical
New research commissioned by BPM solution provider, Camunda, shows that process automation is essential for digital transformation, according to 97 percent of IT leaders surveyed. Process automation is often used to improve an organization’s top line and bottom line. According to those surveyed, approximately half (49 percent) of their enterprise’s process automation initiatives are focused on driving business growth, while the other half supports business optimization (27 percent) and other business efficiency factors, such as firefighting (17 percent).
Camunda is an open-source software company providing process automation with a developer-friendly approach that is standards-based, highly scalable, and collaborative for business and IT. The vendor offers visibility into business operations and improves system resilience. A community of thousands of users across companies such as Allianz, ING, and Vodafone design, automate, and improve mission-critical business processes end-to-end with Camunda. The provider’s workflow and decision automation tools enable Camunda to build software applications more flexibly, collaboratively, and efficiently, gaining the business agility, visibility, and scale needed to drive digital transformation.
This survey of 400 IT professionals in the US and Europe reveals that 84 percent are expecting increased investment in process automation resulting from market pressures, including the rise of remote work. However, process automation needs are further challenged by a range of new technologies, infrastructures, and use cases. This change raises the risk of incomplete or broken business processes, lack of insights into inefficiencies and bottlenecks, added cost, and potential loss of customers or new growth opportunities.
In a press statement, Jakob Freund, CEO and co-founder of Camunda, said, “the results of our survey show a new era for process automation, as the hidden engine powering innovation across an organization, helping to improve customer service and take advantage of new business opportunities while at the same time lowering operational cost and improving efficiencies. But the research also underscores the very significant new technical, infrastructure and organizational challenges IT leaders face, and highlights the need to reinvent their process automation initiatives with a more open, agile, and scalable approach.”
The majority (88 percent) of those surveyed say that IT initiatives have been started or accelerated because of COVID-19, with 80 percent stating that more of their company’s processes are being automated because fewer people are in the office to carry out the same tasks manually. Because of that pressure, it makes sense that 84 percent of IT leaders plan to increase investment in process automation. Though this survey found that 46 percent of an organization’s processes are currently automated, this is projected to grow to 58 percent in the next two years.
Process automation is at the core of digital transformation initiatives, but these processes have become very complex, including multiple different steps and components across different technologies. According to respondents, a single process typically includes five different components, including packaged enterprise applications, APIs, RPA bots, mobile applications, human tasks, or microservices. Processes also run anywhere, as the heavy lifting of process automation is done on-prem (32 percent), in the private cloud (58 percent), or public cloud (47 percent), or some hybrid situation (45 percent). Unsurprisingly, 88 percent of IT professionals say that at least one challenge was experienced during their most recent process automation project. Most respondents that reported struggles cited organizational and project management issues, as well as with disjointed technical infrastructure.
Additionally, many businesses are still relying on manual or inconsistent reporting to decide how to optimize or improve already automated processes, and to identify patterns and bottlenecks. Approximately half (48 percent) of organizations only perform periodic log analysis, while 25 percent are using manual ad-hoc reporting. This lack of visibility and strategic oversight increases the chances that essential business processes are inefficient and will cause harm to revenue and reputation.
The survey also revealed that respondents recognized RPA as one component in the broader process automation landscape; for enterprises using RPA, 65 percent state that RPA improves quality, minimizes errors, and helps provide automation quickly. However, 91 percent say their business experienced challenges from their RPA deployments such as script maintenance, IT control, and compliance issues.
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