“This year, as companies navigate a drastically altered business landscape, they face myriad new challenges, from supply chain disruptions to workforce shortages. Yet the ‘New Normal’ is old news—customers, prospects and other constituents are not accepting excuses for falling short of objectives,” said Kathleen Delaney, Chief Marketing Officer at Kofax.
“At a moment when virtually all companies agree digital workflow transformation is key, we wanted to understand where they’re focusing their priorities, and what types of automation yield the greatest benefit. Having these insights will help executives apply their limited time and resources more intelligently.”
Riding the waves of future disruption
Many organisations emerging from the pandemic have come to realise that automating mission-critical workflows to ensure business continuity, implementing virtual customer experiences and remote working has been key to survival.
Looking to what could come in the future, there is an overwhelming belief that those that pivot rapidly towards automation will be more successful than those that don’t.
89% of those surveyed by Kofax believe that digitally transformed companies have a competitive advantage, with 90% believing that automating business workflows post-COVID will ensure continuity, and 88% stating that end-to-end digital transformation needs to be fast-tracked.
The shift to intelligent automation
While there have been some big disruptors in supply chain and procurement that have driven the adoption of automation in particular COVID-19, BREXIT, and trade wars, there is a range of focuses for executives when it comes to high-value customers, operational, and financial workflows:
- 85% - accounts payable automation
- 84% - transaction processing
- 83% - bank statement processing
- 83% - document security management
- 82% - invoice processing automation
- 78% - onboarding
- 78% - other
- 77% - digital mailroom automation
- 77% - claims processing
Specific drivers for these automation implementations include:
- 94% - optimising customer acquisition and retention
- 93% - running the business
- 93% maximising the value of IT investments
- 93% - improving customer engagement across multiple channels
- 83% - ensuring compliance, data management and security
- 82% - enhancing employee productivity and satisfaction
- 77% - transforming back-office operations
- 77% - gaining customer insights through data analysis
Organisations expect to benefit from the following by automating their workflows:
- 96% - operate more efficiently
- 94% - significantly reduce costs
- 92% - attract new customers
- 90% - retain existing customers
- 74% improve customer satisfaction
- 72% - achieve competitive advantage
- 72% - help employees do more with less
- 90% - eliminate dull, repetitive work
- 69% - improve relationships with outside vendors
While executives are clear on the benefits, new implementations rarely come without challenges in some shape or form. Most are expecting challenges especially when it comes to harnessing existing systems and data and pivoting away from ‘business as usual’ at scale.
The most common challenges include:
- 94% - manual processes
- 93% - fragmented systems
- 91% - poor data insights
- 73% - data security
- 71% - no process intelligence
- 70% - no user-friendly automation tools
- 68% compliance challenges
“When almost anything can be automated, executives are prioritizing the high-value operational, customer and financial processes that have the biggest impact on growing revenues, streamlining operations and improving customer and employee experience. Executives face common challenges when automating these workflows— from fragmented systems and poor data insight to lack of process insight and inability to manage automation at scale,” said Chris Huff, Chief Strategy Officer, Kofax.
“Focused on the right priorities and armed with an intelligent automation platform that’s up to the task, enterprises are achieving their automation ambitions: improving customer experiences, running their businesses more effectively and efficiently, ensuring compliance and making their employees’ work lives happier and more fulfilling,” he added.
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