Far from its beginnings in factory production lines, automation has made its way into our organizations and found a place in the workflows of every department – and it’s going nowhere.
Combined with robotics, machine learning, and artificial intelligence (AI), automation takes over the everyday tasks we’d rather not waste time doing, the work we don’t want to screw up with human errors, customer interactions that require immediate responses, and so much more.
While automation has advanced at lightning speed over the past few years, it doesn’t look like it’s slowing down. As we automate more and more business processes, we are on our way to an interesting long-term paradox: Although we have built machines for a century to do our jobs for us, the percentage of adults with a job in the United States has steadily increased. past 125 years. How does this affect our work?
This is what the future of automation looks like – and how your business can move forward immediately.
10 automation trends to watch out for in 2022
1. Automate quality experiences
Right now, the low hanging fruit for automation is boring, repetitive work. Automation of front office functions is more difficult, but will become more accessible in the future as automation increases.
Before long, more and more companies will be using technology to automate high-quality customer experiences. However, this does not mean that customer support roles will become obsolete anytime soon. After all, 30% of customers still say the most frustrating aspect of a bad customer experience is not reaching a human representative.
2. Alignment with Marketing, Sales and Success
73% of sales teams say that cross-departmental collaboration is critical or very important to their entire sales process. Automation makes it easier for organizations to align. Many CRMs can now facilitate contact handover and data exchange when a contact moves from marketing lead to sales lead to the customer.
3. Automation as an important part of CRMs
Three-quarters of salespeople use technology – usually a CRM – to do more deals. Even so, today’s salespeople spend only 34% of their time selling and more time managing and entering data.
As sales and marketing teams realize the potential of automation to handle repetitive tasks, more of the leading CRM tools are evolving powerful automation capabilities. These will enable companies to automate routine tasks to speed up sales cycles, send personalized marketing messages, and proactively resolve customer service cases without lifting a finger.
4. Automation for more personalization
The best customer interactions are personalized. After setting up audience segments based on specific criteria, tailored messages can be automatically sent to the right people at the ideal time.
5. Deploying AI is getting easier
If AI was ever more at home in science fiction films than it was in our offices, it is no longer the case. AI is increasingly a part of the business tools we know and love, from CRMs to email marketing tools.
In the future, we may not even realize that we are using AI – it will just look like a better customer experience, better sales, or better marketing.
6. Business chatbots as full-time agents
Live chat software has a 73% satisfaction rate because customers can interact with companies. Chatbots can also save companies up to 30% on customer support costs.
While companies these days mainly use live chat to enable real-time conversations between consumers and business representatives, more and more companies are setting up chatbots.
With bots, companies can provide answers to common questions and even solve problems without a team member involved. The best chatbots are increasingly acting as full-time account managers. The key to a bot’s success is intelligence, which still has its limits, but improves quickly.
In the future of automation, bots will become more useful, smarter, and could soon include voice capabilities.
7. AI for automated decision making
Making decisions is exhausting. You need the right data on hand to look beyond your prejudices and gain approval from other stakeholders. AI will increasingly provide a solution to this and provide high-quality data that can help make the best decisions.
While some decisions can be implemented instantly with automation, many will – and should – come back to people from an emotional and empathetic side.
8. Automate data collection and reporting
Automation of data management is essential to ensure data quality and integrity.
However, reporting doesn’t have to involve confusing Excel exports and hours of data manipulation. By consolidating all of your customer data with one iPaaS solution, your tools can provide more accurate reports on the information available.
9. Automation in a company’s app stack
Organizations have more tools at their fingertips than ever before. In the future of automation, more and more companies will have the role of Head of Business Systems to oversee their large number of tools – and that position will bring tremendous capacity for impact and change.
More than ever, the SaaS tools we have chosen will help our companies become more productive, profitable and effective. For best results, companies are combining their tools to enable automated bidirectional data synchronization and greater accuracy.
10. RPA helps companies become more productive
RPA, also known as “robotics” or “robots”, is defined as the automation of rule-based processes with software that uses the user interface and can be run on any software, including web-based applications, ERP systems and mainframe systems. This could include opening emails and attachments, moving files and folders, or filling out forms.
In the future, RPA is likely to become a standard part of our workflows, be it through standalone tools, features of the tools we already use, or built-in apps.
Is automation changing work as we know it?
The short answer is Yes sir. Between 400 million and 800 million people could be displaced by automation and will have to find new jobs around the world by 2030, but economic growth, rising productivity and other forces could more than make up for the losses, according to a report by the McKinsey Global Institute.
The role of automation is to take care of the tasks that machines can do better than we do – and at least for the near future, this does not include creativity, management, or friendly 1: 1 human interaction.
When we automate our business processes, we don’t have to lose the human side of marketing, sales, service and management – it can gain more time.
For best results, create an automation strategy that helps your team focus on what matters most. Choose automation tools that will save time, connect your entire tech stack, and increase productivity and morale.