Cliff Justice
Cliff Justice
Insight

Corporate plans for intelligent automation on shaky ground

Cliff Justice says companies must shift the business and operating model from one of people supported by technology to one of technology supported by people.

By Melanie Batley

Most intelligent automation (IA) projects underway or currently in the pipeline will fail, according to a new study by KPMG.  The survey of 90 industry leaders found that while nearly half (49%) of companies expect to use artificial intelligence at scale in three years, only 24 percent have pilot projects or proof of concepts in place.

The study, "Ready, Set, Fail?: Advoiding setbacks in the intelligent automation race" also found that while enterprises have high expectations of the impact of IA, they are not yet ready to implement it from the top down and at scale.  Specifically, 74 percent of companies expect to use Robotic Process Automation (RPA) in three years, yet only 16 percent are currently using it at scale.

“Many traditional businesses with legacy approaches risk falling behind digital-first companies if they stay with the status quo.  It takes a comprehensive transformation of business and operating models to compete in their own market at the level at which a Tesla or Amazon do theirs,” said Cliff Justice, partner, Innovation and Enterprise Solutions.

It’s not clear whether most companies understand that IA is about changing business processes and then restructuring the organization around those new processes now driven by technologies that didn’t exist before.  KPMG says that companies must shift the business and operating model from one of people supported by technology to one of technology supported by people; it’s a digital first operating model.

The study indicates that companies that successfully embrace emerging IA technologies will be able to differentiate themselves to compete successfully with digitally advanced enterprises.  Organizations that can power up IA efforts can radically improve operations, transform their business models and become long-term winners.  Piecemeal efforts that focus mainly on cutting the cost of legacy processes and reducing headcount will not move the needle in this new world, the report concluded.

To speak to Cliff Justice or another KPMG leader about intelligent automation, please contact Melanie Batley.

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