Margareta Chesaru is public affairs manager at UiPath.
The 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis has brought unprecedented challenges to our societies and economies. While the vast socio-economic consequences are still unraveling, the crisis has reshaped the way we live and work. Europe’s response can turn this challenge into an opportunity for growth and pave the way for a better and more inclusive future. In this new world, technology will play an important role in making our economies more productive and resilient.
In our latest white paper, we lay down the many benefits and opportunities brought by Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and provide insights on how Europe can build a more resilient economy and workforce by leveraging automation. The power of automation can be harnessed by everyone: businesses, governments, as well as individuals. Our goal is to democratize RPA so that everyone can reap its benefits and have their own software robot.
Speaking at the European Parliament Plenary in November 2019, European Commission (EC) President Ursula von der Leyen declared:
“We will automate work that is wearisome for us humans: carrying heavy loads, performing repetitive tasks in factories or in offices.”
RPA follows a series of automation technologies long used by human beings eager to work faster and better. We see software robots today in almost every industry, including banking and finance, healthcare, and the public sector. By delegating data-heavy processes to software robots, employees can spend less time on repetitive tasks and can focus more on high-value work. This can mean more time to care and provide for patients, customers, and citizens.
Therefore, in addition to the traditional return on investment (ROI), automation brings a ’return on time.’ As EC President von der Leyen said, we can use this time to do "what distinguishes human beings. Time for what computers can't do: empathy and creativity.”
In the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, organizations have used RPA to respond to drastic shifts in demand, clear backlogs, and process citizens' requests with speed and accuracy. When time is of the essence, automation can help organizations meet strict deadlines and respond quicker. By sharing the workload with software robots, humans can increase their resources and lower their stress levels. This will help organizations achieve greater employee wellbeing and productivity.
Automation also offers a significant opportunity for upskilling and reskilling. UiPath develops programs to help workers, students, and organizations develop automation skills to keep up with the rapid pace of new technologies. This includes UiPath Academy, the world’s first free and open training platform for RPA. According to the Upwork 2019 index, RPA is one of the fastest-growing job skills.
In a fast-changing world, RPA can help the European society adapt faster and smarter, boost its productivity, and ensure more creative modes of work. For those who are facing a skills shortage, it can also provide the means to tackle the skills gap and improve their career path.
By rethinking the way we work, we can enable innovation in our workplace and support a digital transformation that benefits our economies, societies, and institutions.
If you'd like to learn more about how the adoption of RPA can foster socio-economic development within the European Union (EU), make sure to read our newest white paper entitled Taking the robot out of the human: how RPA will revolutionize work, skills, and society across the EU. There, you will also find case studies from organizations and experts in the EU that have embraced RPA to boost their productivity, ensure the resilience of their operations, and prepare for the future of work.