Quarantine is changing the way automation is viewed… and the Cortex style of automation will enable the new normal!

The rapid scaling up of demand in certain sectors, for example, online shopping, and grocery is demonstrating how rapidly automation can enable scaling up of operations. However, the devastating changes in demand in other sectors have reinforced how the resource cost is a minor factor in scaling down. Historically, the main constraint to the speed of this change has been an adoption. Enforced adoption under lockdown has accelerated and will not retreat to the old normal but will maintain a new normal and probably continue with retained momentum as the supply chain and habits change permanently. This is causing dramatic effects on every industry and boosting the need for operational adaptation.

As people increase their need to communicate whilst socially distancing, demand for call centre services is increasing. However, whilst this demand increases call centre staff are going into isolation or lockdown. This is triggering a huge amount of urgent interest in the rapid and agile deployment of automation, something that Cortex is designed for but most automation technology is not. The need for orders, faults and updates to be done at computing speed is more vital than ever.

Under these enforced circumstances, people are starting to understand the mechanics of working from home and resolving the previous hurdles such as communication habits, and access to resources. This is also revealing efficiencies in reduced travel time and cost. As time goes on habits, productivity and comfort levels will adjust to a new normal. We can look forward to more remote working and less office-based activities. Mass online Yoga classes will probably not last, but mass business meetings will also probably not return.

Over recent years the consolidated lowest-cost supply chain that emerged as the go-to model is now demonstrating its risk and fragility in a raw reality that affects everyone. This will drive a risk rebalancing approach to the lowest cost location which will transform manufacturing, customer service, and business services into a more complex supply chain and the need for more complex information sharing.

The first two scenarios are happening right now, but all of these factors will drive the increasingly rapid evolution of intelligent machines operating within a team to increase capacity and effectiveness. “Automating operations with me” rather than the historic “Automating operations for me” will become the new norm. As a ‘team member’ Intelligent Automation can transform operations and drive the change needed for the new economy.

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