Jira | Journey | Jikoda | Justify (your business case) | Jargon | Japan | Joblessness & Journalists | Jaded

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Jira | Journey | Jikoda | Justify (your business case) | Jargon | Japan | Joblessness & Journalists | Jaded

Welcome to the TENTH part of a 26 part series charting the A – Z of Robotic Process Automation, Intelligent Automation and Digital Transformation (DT). Today’s letter is the letter ‘J’.

Japan: A decade of stagnant growth and an ageing population has forced Japan to embrace robotics and intelligent automation. However, rather than employ automation as a job killer; Japan envisages a human-centered society that balances economic advancement with the resolution of social problems using intelligent automation technologies. Japan’s Society 5.0 was proposed as a future that Japan, and other countries, should aspire to

Society 5.0 requires workers to have a different set of skills than today (i.e. focus less on manual dexterity and more on cognitive, creative, emotionally intelligent ways of working).

Video 1: Society 5.0

Video 2: Why Society 5.0 | Yuko Harayama | TEDxRoma (YouTube).

Jobs and Joblessness, Journalists: Journalists, research consultancies and government agencies have often focused on the number of jobs that will be lost due to automation. For example;

  • Oxford Economics: up to 20 million manufacturing jobs worldwide will be lost to robots by 2030.

However, history has repeatedly shown that more jobs have been created from intelligent automation than have been lost.

  • World Economic Forum: automation will displace 75 million jobs but generate 133 million new ones worldwide by 2022.
  • Gartner: AI-related job creation will reach two million net-new jobs in 2025.

No one is certain what the future holds but history has shown roles will change. Technology driven change has always caused roles to change and will continue to do so going forward. The good news? Anyone can acquire digital skills—not only people already working in tech.

“We are seeing more and more new opportunities arise due to intelligent automation and associated technologies. Positions which weren’t around even 5 years ago so naturally, companies can’t demand 10+ years experience in ‘X’ technology. This provides an opportunity for people to cross-train and transition into a cutting edge tech space.”

Harrison Goode, Intelligent Automation Recruitment Expert

Jaded (trough of disappointment): Many have been jaded by their failure to get robotics and intelligent automation to work. EY reported that more than 50% of RPA programs fail to deliver the expected returns proffered.

“RPA has gone from Sliced Bread (best thing since) to Brown Bread (RPA is Dead) and, paradoxically, has been brought back again by a deadly virus. Looking at it through a practitioner’s lens, RPA is still at the heart of any successful Automation Program but it increasingly being recognized that, stand alone, RPA efficacy is limited. Intelligent Automation, now reincarnated as Hyperautomation to fit the industry appetite for buzzwords, requires multiple tools and, most likely, considerable process review and re-engineering.”

Nick Andrews, Founder Virtual Operations

Jargon: There have been a significant number of terms used to market robotics which has created more confusion then benefit (e.g. RPA, IPA, Hyper Automation etc.). Whilst is it excellent to see a thriving industry; acronyms, confusing terminology and obfuscation help no one. If intelligent automation, robotic process automation or digital transformation are to succeed then these areas need simplified and opened to the greatest number of people possible.

“Vendors please note that customers could not care less about what you call it; they simply want automation to work.”

Kieran Gilmurray, Global Automation Lead

Jira: Jira is a is a proprietary issue tracking product developed by Atlassian that allows bug tracking and agile project management for Agile delivery teams. All teams need some form of tracking and project management software and Altassian’s Jira tool just happens to be one of the best.

Picture 1: Jira Board (Atlassian)

“Firms need to implement Agile way of working and delivering. Due to technology, the pace of business change has never been faster, nor will it ever be slower again. Companies must deliver faster than ever to compete and should implement Agile methods and tools to enable them to do so.”

Pavani Koudri, RPA & AI Architect

Journey: Digital transformation is a journey not a destination. With so many advances in digital technology, businesses and customers needs, vary all of the time. Customers now enjoy a massive amount of choice in the digital age. However, one thing that is certain in the digital age, customers expect every part of their journey to be safe, exceptional and unique.

“What we are seeing is that the RPA to Hyper-Automation journey, if done well provides the foundation for digital enablement. Digital enablement then allows organisations not only to adapt to a rapidly changing world but also to provide the information stakeholders want, in the form they want it and when they want it. Ultimately though, Automation and Digitisation are all about Data and winning. Being able to gather, compile, analyze and then to act upon data will be the determining compete factors.”

Nick Andrews, Founder Virtual Operations

Justify: If a business cannot build a robust business case behind its digital transformation program then it needs to rethink what it is doing. Firms that begin their transformation journey before understanding the costs and benefits of a program; often fail to get the outcomes they want. We have previously written about how to build a business case for robotic transformation and intelligent automation and recommend you list that article before you being your journey.

“The first step of the RPA and IA journey, is to create a strong business case. The business case should include specific process-candidates for automation followed by all the required metrics (volumes, cases per day, average manual handling time, peaks, forecast volumes, exception rates, etc.). It should be created along with a Partner (consulting company or a smaller boutique), for companies without any internal knowledge, since it is the first and most important step on your journey.”

Konstantinos Vogiatzakis, Global RPA Lead at Babylon Health

Jikoda: Jidoka is a Lean method that is widely-adopted in manufacturing and product development. It is a simple way of protecting your company from delivering products of low quality or defects to your customers. In fact, the Jidoka concept is one of the two pillars that turned Toyota into the giant it is today. Jidoka can easily be applied in a service context. Jidoka relies on 4 simple principles to ensure that a company would deliver defect-free products or services:

  1. Discover an abnormality
  2. Stop the process
  3. Fix the immediate problem
  4. Investigate and solve the root cause

Picture 1: Jidoka flow diagram

“By implementing the Jidoka concept, anyone in an organization is able to stop the workflow as soon as they notice a problem that will harm the quality of a product or service. As products are increasingly delivered digitally the Jidoka concept can and should be implemented by online businesses to ensure they always deliver to highest possible service standards.”

Kieran Gilmurray, Global Automation Lead

This article highlighted things relating to intelligent automation and digital transformation beginning with the letter “J”. There are many ‘J’s‘ organisations need to consider but what ‘J’ do you think is the most important?

If you like this article then you may find these articles of use too.

  1. How to build a business case for Intelligent Automation and Robotic Process Automation
  2. 30 ways to build a pipeline of processes suitable for Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and Intelligent Automation (IA)
  3. I’ve met 100+ RPA developers but these are the 15 signs of an ‘exceptional’ RPA developer!
  4. 8 questions to ask to ensure you select the ‘right’ processes to automate using RPA | IA.
  5. 14 rules for Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and Intelligent Automation (AI) success
  6. The A-Z of Robotic Process Automation, Intelligent Automation and Digital Transformation
  7. The biggest lie told to RPA customers – 50 robots equals success
  8. 40 essential selection criteria to choose an RPA platform

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Free to reuse: We are a community of RPA and Intelligent Automation experts with years of real world experience. We have stories to tell and the scars to show for it. We share our collective wisdom for free to simply provide as much value as we can to you. Therefore, if you want to post this article on your LinkedIn page then please feel free to do so. The more information we share within the RPA community the more likely businesses are to succeed with this excellent technology.

Further Help: If I can help you in any way please do reach out.

Note: The views expressed above are our views and not those of my employer or the employers of the contributing experts.

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