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Potential challenges with automation

Automating your processes often leads to significant productivity gains for your business. Tasks can be performed without interruption, resulting in a more consistent outcome, and you become less dependent on key individuals. Read our article Why is it important to automate your processes? to read more about the advantages of automation. You can also learn more about automation here. However, as great as it is to implement new technology, it may also come with some challenges.

Concerns about jobs disappearing

One frequently discussed aspect of automation is the potential loss of jobs. A report by McKinsey suggests that up to 30% of all tasks could be automated by the year 2030. This implies that between 400 and 800 million jobs could disappear entirely, and up to 375 million people worldwide may need to change professions.

However, it’s worth noting that less than 5% of all jobs consist solely of tasks that can be entirely automated away. Furthermore, during these years, many new jobs will be created, both as a result of automation and other societal changes.

In summary, it's true that a lot of repetitive tasks have already been automated and this trend will continue. However, it's not entirely accurate to see this as resulting in a loss of jobs. Our society is constantly changing, and the job market has always adapted accordingly – and will most likely continue to do so. Instead of employees dedicating their time to repetitive, non-value-adding tasks, there will be a shift toward a different type of work, potentially increasing both customer value and your employees' motivation.

If your staff show signs of concern regarding your automation journey, it's important to maintain an ongoing dialogue about the process and make them feel involved in the entire journey. Discuss their continued significance for the business and clearly illustrate how automation will ease their workload.  

Significant investment

When a company decides to automate one or more processes, it should be prepared for a relatively significant investment. The degree of investment depends on a variety of factors, such as what needs to be automated, how many systems are involved, the type of data in question, and whether the prerequisites for what you want to achieve are in place. Therefore, determining the exact size of the investment is challenging. Read more about why estimating the cost of software is difficult.

Regardless, it requires effort, and often some detective work must be done within your existing systems. Therefore, be sure to have a reasonably flexible budget if you're considering automation.

Another form of cost is the time it takes to develop and implement the automation process. Regardless of whom you partner with, it will take time before you can fully streamline your workflow. You should also anticipate a transition period when moving from manual to automatic processes. This could potentially lead to a temporary decrease in productivity, but we assure you – it will soon be better than ever.

Benefits outweigh the challenges

Despite the various challenges companies might face with automation (by the way, read our article about common automation obstacles and how to overcome them), the benefits are numerous. It opens new doors to possibilities and innovation and will contribute to increased productivity. The key is to approach it with the right strategy and dedication –  if you do, we can practically guarantee that automation will be a success story for you too.

Why is automation important?

Read more about the benefits of automation and why you should consider it.
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