Robotic Process Automation (RPA) continues to expand its reach and client base as more enterprises become aware of the benefits of the technology. Enterprises of all sizes and industries are testing the RPA waters, eager to keep pace with their peers in the technology adoption curve. Enterprise adoption of RPA, as indicated by the number of enterprise clients served by independent RPA vendors, achieved a 105 percent growth rate from 2016 to 2017, according to Everest Group.
“RPA offers many benefits and few risks,” said Sarah Burnett, vice president at Everest Group. “Using RPA, companies can reduce costs and achieve faster processing and improved quality. The risks are low, because the technology is non-invasive and easily remediable. The market is in its early stages of high growth and adoption, with most enterprises testing the water at this stage.”
Among current RPA deployments, desktop automation (attended RPA) is the most prevalent, followed by server (virtual machine) deployments (unattended RPA), which typically sees robots run according to pre-defined schedules or process related automatic triggers. Much less common is the use of cloud for running RPA deployments, but adoption of this model is increasing as the market grows.
RPA software typically comes with centralized robot management and robot performance analytics. More advanced features include auto-scaling, dynamic load balancing and context awareness. At the nascent stage of emergence is cognitive RPA, which is RPA integrated with artificial intelligence technologies, robot voice and vision interfaces, predictive and prescriptive analytics, automation of judgment tasks, and self-managing and self-healing robots.
“We expect an extrapolated high-growth curve for the next several years as vendor offerings get more sophisticated,” added Burnett. “For instance, we already see vendors building out capabilities in the areas of computer vision, pre-built automations, self-healing systems and auto-scaling systems, just to name a few.”
The RPA software market overall witnessed a growth of 92 to 97 percent in 2017 to reach US$480 million to $510 million. The market is expected to grow between 75 and 90 percent annually up to 2019.
These findings and more are discussed in a newly released Everest Group report, “Robotic Process Automation (RPA) Annual Report 2018 – Creating Business Value in a Digital-First World." This research explores RPA market size and growth, buyer adoption trends and key learnings from early adopters, RPA solution characteristics, technology trends, the RPA technology vendor landscape, and the future outlook for 2018-2019.
Some of the findings are:
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