Human civilization has experienced upheaval throughout history, from the Industrial Revolution to the Iron, Stone, and Bronze Ages. In each of these eras, human productivity and living changed drastically, influencing how humans work, live, and play.
As we head towards the first quarter of the 21st century, the new revolution on hand exists in the area of robotics and automation. According to research firm Forrester, there will be over 4 million robots by 2021 doing office, administrative, and sales tasks, replacing roles long held by human beings. The influx of robots also promises to be profitable, with the cost of each estimated to be $5,000 – $10,000 annually – a significantly lower cost than a human being and without the need for healthcare.
While robots may inherit the Earth, they don’t come equal. While the market is still extremely nascent, there are a few characteristics that stand out for vendors implementing the right thing. Forrester wrote about those qualities in their Q1 Report and we lay them out in this blog post.
- Characteristic #1: Humans are Still Important – Even with the influx of robots, many robotic process automation (RPA) firms are still continuing to rely on humans. Several vendors are exploring how humans and robots engage with one another through case management and analytics. There’s still some work to be done around chat bots and that’s currently in progress.
- Characteristic #2: Plug and Play – Services are still a key in the IT space and such characteristics extend into the RPA space. According to Forrester, some vendors have eased the robotic management process through the development of plug and play systems that can be run by non-programmers while also connecting with third-party application integration.
- Characteristic #3: Catching the Low-Hanging Fruit – Sometimes keeping things simple is all that matters. For some RPA firms, that’s what their offerings are all about, either offering individual robots or robots that run on the side with the possibility of expansion and scalability. For organizations seeking quick wins, having this service on the market is helpful.
What do you think? Where do robotics need to head in the next 3-5 years in order to achieve true innovation? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.
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