In seeking the “new normal,” organizations have been taking measures to adapt to the changing landscape of how work is done. To respond to the challenges brought on by COVID-19, businesses are seeking out cloud-based solutions now more than ever — not just to get through the pandemic but to recover and thrive.
So why cloud now? Three drivers of the surge in cloud and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) adoption are business continuity, supporting a distributed, work-from-home employee population, and the acceleration of digital transformation. Business continuity
One of the most disrupted areas is business continuity. Organizations who have systems and core processes running on premises or on legacy systems have struggled to sustain business as usual due to being overloaded or not being able to scale with a remote workforce.
With cloud, systems are not reliant on physical proximity of servers or local machines. Systems and business applications are up and running no matter where and when they’re accessed. In case of disruption, cloud provides the benefit of backups, redundancy, and disaster recovery to minimize time and data loss.
Back to work and remote work
As businesses reopen offices, they need to plan for back-to-office and work-from-home scenarios. In addition to safety, a key question is how can workers be most effective and productive no matter where they are?
Cloud democratizes access to application and workplace systems. Companies can empower employees to work from anywhere with secure access to all the necessary tools, applications, and services while keeping data and work protected and backed up. Ease of access and collaboration are classic characteristics of cloud solutions, which become important operating principles in the new ways business is conducted. That’s true whether working from home or in the office — especially as physical social distancing practices become a workplace norm and as business travel diminishes for the foreseeable future.
Acceleration toward digital transformation
A third driver of cloud adoption is the shift toward digital business. Digital natives or those business that invested earlier in digitization have been able to respond best and adapt quickly to the changing business environment. Now, digital transformation is no longer a buzzword once only applicable for large enterprises. Businesses of all sizes are looking to move to a digital-first approach. Cloud solutions are integral to digital transformation, providing business agility and ability to scale fast.
Cloud-native automation solutions
The pandemic has exacerbated the challenges of legacy systems or islands of applications companies and their employees rely on to get work done. Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and intelligent automation can not only help bridge the silos but also make work significantly more efficient. They free up workers from mundane, repetitive tasks to focus on higher-value activities that are much needed today such as better customer service experiences or creative thinking and innovative problem solving.
It was for these very reasons that late last year Automation Anywhere launched Enterprise A2019, the world’s first and only cloud-native, web-based Digital Workforce platform. Covering discovery to data capture to automation to analysis and optimization of processes, the end-to-end intelligent automation platform runs on the Automation Anywhere Enterprise Cloud as RPA-as-a-Service (RPAaaS). The platform was architected from the ground up to be cloud-native and much more flexible and scalable.
The benefits of an entire Digital Workforce platform in the cloud, or RPA-as-a-Service, include:
Faster time to value. Simply log in from a web browser and begin automation. You can enable automation across the entire organization in a few clicks. With the platform accessible from the web, barriers to adoption are eliminated as you can start immediately and learn as you go.
Business agility. The platform updates frequently behind the scenes and automatically delivers the latest technology and capabilities each time you log in. You can securely access the platform from any device, anywhere, and any time due to high availability. One of the benefits that helps you achieve competitive agility is the fast and limitless scale of bots and automation across the organization.
Total cost of ownership (TCO). The traditional savings that come with RPA are further amplified by automation in the cloud with lower costs to own and operate by eliminating the need for infrastructure and maintenance.
Packages for every business
RPA-as-a-Service is not a one-size-fits-all solution. Every organization has different needs, timelines, and budgets. With Enterprise A2019, we wanted to remove the barriers to entry that are traditionally associated with RPA. And now, we’re going further in providing SaaS packages to meet the needs of every business for quick and cost-effective intelligent automation:
Community Edition, already with hundreds of thousands of users, is a free version of the complete Digital Workforce platform that includes RPA, AI, and analytics. It is designed for developers and students to experience the ease of building bots no matter their level of expertise, from non-technical RPA novices to advanced programmers.
Cloud Starter Pack enables small businesses and teams to leverage enterprise-grade automation on an advanced cloud RPA platform, with zero friction to get started. Pricing starts at US$750/month and includes one Bot Creator, one Control Room, and one unattended Bot Runner. Additional Bot Runners can be added a la carte as needed.
Advanced Pack helps medium to large enterprises and organizations in regulated industries securely scale automation throughout the entire organization — from discovery to automation to optimization of processes across the front office and back office. This ensures business continuity and enterprise-grade governance, security, and compliance, while empowering employees to be productive working at home or as they return to the office.
All of these SaaS packages are free to start.
Business continuity, supporting a distributed workforce, and digital transformation were already pre-pandemic trends leading to the uptake of cloud solutions — and now cloud and intelligent automation are at the forefront of driving critical positive changes for organizations in a much-needed time.