Robotic Process Automation Tools

The RPA Market Has Grown 63% Since Last Year

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Steven Lerner

robotic process automation tools

More enterprises are leveraging robotic process automation tools to reduce costs and improve productivity. RPA is one of the most popular forms of business automation technology in the enterprise today. This solution allows enterprises to configure software that imitates the actions of human workers to complete a specific task.

How much has RPA use increased in the past year? What are the advantages to using this technology in the enterprise? Finally, what are the biggest obstacles to adoption? Here’s an overview of RPA.

Latest Trend: RPA Is Growing Fast

In June 2019, Gartner reported that the market for robotic process automation tools skyrocketed over 63% from the past year to $84 million. This means that RPA is the fastest growing software market in the enterprise. Organizations are becoming increasingly intrigued by the ability to automate mundane tasks in order to enhance the employee experience.

“The RPA market has grown since our last forecast, driven by digital business demands as organizations look for ‘straight-through’ processing,” said Fabrizio Biscotti, research vice president at Gartner.

With the increased adoption, Gartner anticipates that the total revenue for RPA will hit $1.3 billion in 2019. The findings also suggest that RPA adoption is strongest in North America and Europe, but there is also growing adoption around the world. Japan, for instance, saw a 124% increase in RPA usage.

“This shows that RPA software is appealing to organizations across the world, due to its quicker deployment cycle times, compared with other options such as business process management platforms and business process outsourcing,” said Biscotti.

According to the Gartner report, digital transformation efforts are the driving force behind the rise of RPA in the enterprise. The technology helps businesses tap into the value associated with previous tools while helping to accelerate digital transformation.

Although all industries are leveraging RPA, there are a few that stand above the rest. Some of the most likely RPA adopters are in financial services and utilities. The five top RPA vendors also control nearly half of the market.

These latest findings from Gartner also mirror other recently released research that suggests a growth in RPA adoption. In June 2019, declared that the global RPA market will experience a 31.1% increase by 2025, with an estimated market size of $3.97 billion.

Benefits Of Robotic Process Automation Tools

There are many advantages to leveraging RPA tools in the enterprise. The obvious benefit is a cost reduction due to a robot completing tasks that a company would normally pay an employee to do. The technology saves both time and resources. One big cost-saver is by helping companies migrate away from paper-based processes. RPA only works with digital files, which means that a company must digitize everything, which reduces paper usage.

By automating repetitive tasks with a bot, employees are free to focus on more important business operations that require a human touch, which adds enterprise-wide value. Automating work with a bot also reduces the risk of human errors.

In terms of compliances and regulations, RPA can be a great addition. Bots are generally good at record keeping because they are easier to track than humans, and provide an effort-free record for auditing. RPA tools also improve interoperability, and can work across multiple systems.

When working with a bot, prior knowledge of programming is not required. Any employee, including those outside of IT, is able to initiate a bot. The technology could also simplify the process of deciphering business data.

RPA Adoption Challenges

Despite the advantages of using robotic process automation tools, there are many challenges to adopting the technology. A buy-in from C-Suite is usually required for a project of this magnitude, and should not be overlooked. This also includes consulting with heads of departments impacted by RPA.

Selecting the right RPA vendor can also be tricky. Enterprises must choose the RPA solution with capabilities that align with its needs. If the RPA’s costs are out of budget or doesn’t fulfill critical needs, then it could be disastrous. The wrong RPA solution could prevent an organization from achieving its digital transformation dreams.

Even if the correct RPA vendor was selected, then there needs to be a massive coordination between all workers impacted by the technology. This process includes setting reasonable expectations, creating awareness about the technology, and assigning roles to every employee involved with RPA.

Once an organization overcomes these adoption hurdles, the challenges continue to pile on. Custom development of RPA can be tricky and expensive if an enterprise is forced to hire an outside worker for this process. Finally, maintenance of RPA can be very complicated. Failure to consistently maintain RPA tools could be problematic for an organization.