Recent research has highlighted concerns about the potential impact of robotic automation on the labor market, but shared service professionals seem unconvinced about the ability of robots to replace humans, at least in business processing services.
In a survey of shared service professionals by Redwood Software, about 37% of respondents stated that they believe the biggest benefit to implementing robotics would be to automate manual data entry, while only 57% said they believe robots can go beyond data entry to understand business process.
Over the past couple of years, there have been dozens of studies on the potential impact of robotic automation processes. Most of them predicting that repetitive, manual processes would be automated, freeing workers up to focus on more value-added and strategic tasks. But this new survey casts doubt over previous findings.
Although 36% of professionals surveyed reasoned that they don’t have technical expertise to use robotic automation, several respondents appeared to be unsure of their ROI in robotic technology. “This clearly indicates that respondents understanding of the capabilities of robotics may be limited, or they may not be ready for more advanced robotics,” the report says.
Although the shared service professionals do not seem to be excited about the potential benefits of robotic automation, the analysts of this report believe that the use of robotic automation will be inevitable for the outsourcing industry.
“We cannot persist with old tools and approaches in an increasingly digital world. We are awash with data and connections on a global scale and must adapt in line. Jobs will be lost, but others will be created — skill sets will change,” says the report.