Automation 101: Getting started with cognitive enterprise automation

By Elli Hurst

Automation doesn’t threaten jobs; it enhances job satisfaction

While 98%(1) of companies are already engaged in some form of automation, their staff needn’t be concerned that robots will soon take over their work. It’s estimated that fewer than 5%(2) of jobs are fully automatable. Rather than fear automation, many employees are elated when it relieves them of mundane, repetitive tasks, and frees them up to concentrate their efforts on more rewarding endeavors – more challenging activities that more fully utilize their intelligence, spark their imagination and perhaps instill a bit of pride of ownership.

One area that is gaining momentum is that of cognitive enterprise automation (CEA), in which business and IT operations are automated to speed up the process, ensure consistency, and provide scalability, flexibility and reliability. When you consider a myriad of repeatable IT tasks, for example, and the time it takes to perform them, it’s little wonder that automation can perform these 5X faster execution and up to 50 percent in cost savings.(3)

Lower cost, higher quality, better consistency, and improved process performance have compelled many organizations to explore automation.

Humans pursuing human excellence

IBM was approached to assist in an automation effort by an organization with almost 20,000 employees in 150 offices in 50 countries. Obviously, an enterprise of this size and scope has massive integration and accessibility requirements, and a lot of processes to keep running efficiently. Working with IBM, they implemented a CEA solution that monitors multiple levels of infrastructure and business processes, and generates prioritized alerts for issues, according to their potential impact.

The solution we developed with this company automated manual processes to enable early detection and remediation for over 500 potential problems with minimal false alerts.

So now the organization’s systems run to optimal capability and, more importantly, thousands upon thousands of work hours have been freed up for more productive activities. Rather than devoting their valuable skills to merely running the system, talented professionals are now able to build and develop project design skills that serve a far more strategic purpose.

How can you benefit from cognitive enterprise automation?

Remarkably, it doesn’t take a huge investment or a lot of time to get moving in the right direction. We advise that you start small, achieve some quick gains, and then expand into more areas that will benefit your organization.

We have been working with clients to automate their processes for a number of years now, and have developed a experiential point of view of what it takes to be successful with an automation initiative. If you’d like to learn more about doing it the right way, right away, we’re offering a learning event you won’t want to miss.

Start here

Some colleagues and I put together a webinar that discusses this topic, and provides an intriguing account of how one large organization successfully transformed their organization using automation with cognitive capabilities. I invite you to view this informative webinar that features Timothy Wetzel of AmerisourceBergen presenting how his organization started off small with application management automation, and then expanded their initiative to achieve better performance. Additionally, Tom Reuner of analyst group HfS, discusses the findings from the HfS report on Intelligent Automation in our webinar the Keys to Success for Cognitive Automation of Application Management.

After you’ve viewed the webinar, you’ll no doubt want to learn even more from IBM’s automation experts. Visit our site for information about our services and our clients’ automation journeys.