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Blog | Dec 20, 2023

The Future of RPA: 2024 Predictions

The Future of RPA - Trends & Predictions
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Is RPA on Its Way Out or Its Way Up?

Robotic process automation (RPA) has been weighed and measured and we’ve determined what the future holds for our task-automating friend in 2024.

RPA lives under intelligent automation’s (IA) umbrella along with business process management (BPM), artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), among others. So, does standalone RPA still live up to the hype? Has enterprise-wide automation fully absorbed it or is generative AI finally kicking it to the curb?

Let’s look at our 2024 predictions with insights directly from our people at SS&C Blue Prism.

What Is the Future Scope of RPA?

RPA already exists in a lot of organizations, but its potential beyond automating repetitive tasks? It’s just getting started. We’re going to see more organizations take the leap with automation and explore new possibilities across the business. As we head into the new year, a top priority for many organizations will be minimizing costs, boosting customer service and finding ways to improve security, governance and compliance in line with evolving environmental, social and governance (ESG) regulations.

As you know, we can’t talk about RPA without mentioning generative AI. As more technological advances emerge from gen AI, RPA will evolve with them to produce even better efficiency and productivity.

“Further sophistication in LLMs and gen AI will simplify the creation of automations and tackle complex and hard-to-automate processes.”

Sunny Saha

SVP and general manager, Asia Pacific, SS&C Blue Prism

Is RPA still relevant in 2024?

The short answer? Yes! RPA is still a useful automation tool. It deploys software robots to perform front and back-office tasks. Of course, a lot of enterprises are taking RPA to the next level and finding new ways to achieve total digital transformation.

RPA is well-suited for handling a lot of repetitive tasks like you’d see in administration. But by sweeping RPA together with AI and making it more accessible to citizen developers, businesses will get a lot more out of it – and that’s what we’re seeing in future automation trends. 

Is RPA here to stay?

“Platforms are increasingly focusing on seamless integrations, enhancing user experience. […] Integrating tools from RPA to machine learning (ML) and AI ensures not just task automation, but an end-to-end process management without human intervention.”

Christopher Grønne Skaanild, Head of competitive intelligence, SS&C Blue Prism

Will RPA become obsolete?

RPA is going to evolve from standalone RPA platform solutions to broader platform-play offerings including BPM, intelligent document processing (IDP) and more. AI automation will include more unattended automation that doesn’t require a human-in-the-loop (HITL). It’s also going to be more accessible to non-technical business users through low- or no-code tools. 

Where does RPA fit in with other emerging technologies?

“The consolidation of BPM, RPA and IDP into a single vendor or platform model is part of a broader trend in business automation, aiming to provide a more holistic and efficient approach to managing and optimizing business processes and customer interactions.”

Greg Walker, Product marketing manager, SS&C Blue Prism

General enthusiasm for Generative IA in 2023 will bring focus on the automation approach. The potential for automation with AI and Gen AI is now exponential in any company.RPA, IA and Gen AI COE will continue to develop, with a strong executive focus on the business transformation and the scalability of the solutions.

Julien Fest, Intelligent automation offering lead, Avanade, LinkedIn

How big is the market for RPA?

RPA implementations are big and getting bigger; the market for automation is growing as the need for higher productivity, cost savings and improved customer experience to meet demands become a top priority for organizations.

“By 2025, 70% of enterprises in all industries will have engaged digital business model  transformation services to implement analytics-driven business decisions and  management capabilities.” 


Competitive Landscape: Business Process Automation 

“73% of CIOs said their enterprise plans to increase funding on AI and machine learning in 2024 compared to 2023.”


2024 Gartner CIO and Technology Executive Survey 

Will generative AI replace intelligent process automation?

“Will gen AI replace IA? Quite simply, no! Because gen AI and intelligent automation are hugely complementary technologies. While gen AI provides actionable insights and generates compelling, original content, intelligent automation will carry out the execution of activities required off the back of those insights and content, as well as orchestrate and manage all the workflows, resources and data required to successfully undertake the execution. Essentially, IA will provide the orchestration and automation capabilities to support the creation and analytic capabilities in gen AI."

Natalie Keightley, Senior director – product marketing, SS&C Blue Prism

What Are the Trends in RPA?

We’ve narrowed our 2024 predictions down to 7 RPA trends involving:

  1. Generative AI + intelligent automation.
  2. Digital worker-first processes.
  3. Evolving from pure play to platform play.
  4. Strategic applications.
  5. Better user accessibility for citizen developers.
  6. Ethical automation and ESG compliance.
  7. Governance and security.

Download our 2024 Trends and Predictions e-book for more details on each of our seven predictions.

So long as there are tasks to be automated, RPA will be around to help. But the way RPA looks will change as its capabilities expand to include other technologies in the realm of intelligent automation and AI.

What Is the Future of RPA Solutions?

We’re just scratching the surface of process automation. As RPA continues to evolve with the integration of AI, we’ll see a shift from automating repetitive, rules-based tasks to complex tasks and end-to-end automated processes.

As governance and security improve around IA technologies, we’ll also see more highly regulated industries such as financial services and healthcare taking on a digital workforce as a robust and reliable solution to improve their operations.

Finally, the future of robotic process automation is at business users’ fingertips with user-accessibility and intuitive designs becoming increasingly available. With low- and no-code development tools, we’ll see an increase in citizen developers – people without a technical background who can deploy automations to improve processes. This will broaden employee skills and help democratize RPA.

At SS&C Blue Prism, we’re always looking ahead while keeping our robust foundation through our reliable operating model, the SS&C | Blue Prism® Robotic Operating Model (ROM™2), and our dependable and efficient digital workforce designed with user-accessibility in mind.

Download the 2024 Automation Trends e-book to learn more.

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