For complex retail, conventional retail, manufacturing, or even distribution, ‘automation’ can translate differently for each industry. The catchall phrases of ‘optimizing’ or ‘streamlining’ with automation suggest differing functions depending on your background. They all have one thing in common within their individual niches: automation embodies the idea of ‘working smarter, not harder’.
No longer are large companies against small, it’s the fast beating the slow. Large corporations aren’t always the companies that will survive, but the ones with the ability to adapt to change in transforming their end-to-end processes. In 2019, business process management was a $3.38 billion market, and has continued to grow since. With the robotic process automation (RPA) market valued at 1.4 billion projected to grow 40% by 2027 and digital process automation (DPA) valued at 7.6 billion projected to grow to 13%, these industries are not just a phase (Mordor Intelligence, 2022). Automation is becoming a standard practice across all industries, trickling from high tech down to brick-and-mortar retail.
Many don’t want to automate themselves out of a job for fear digital pioneers are downsizing their workforce to cut operation costs, though the real fear they are facing is not adopting automation and other digital transformation methods quickly enough. Late adopters of these technologies rarely catch up to early adopters and the following company base. Meaning, even if these companies transformed their processes to be an automated unified commerce hub to match their competitors, chances are it would be too little, too late.
What does this mean for traditional methods?
We see a reduction in brick and mortar stores, does this mean that face-to-face interaction is on its way out? Automation isn’t replacing human interaction or eliminating manual jobs but reducing manual processes to optimize time and resources for crucial functions.
A lack of automation is to stunt innovation and progress. Automation is your friend not competition. As many CSRs and customers can attest, some roles and procedures are better suited for face-to-face interaction. Those interactions aren’t going away anytime soon. So, to answer your question: No, Face-to-face- interactions are not going away, just strategically used to maximize human time and overall bottom line in the process.
“Business Process Management Market (2022 – 27) – Industry Trends, Growth – Mordor Intelligence.” Business Process Management Market (2022 – 27) – Industry Trends, Growth – Mordor Intelligence, https://www.mordorintelligence.com/industry-reports/business-process-management-market.