Future of the global outsourcing industry
There are several new technologies that are emerging and are increasingly adopted by service providers in the IT/BPO sector. This is expected to have a significant impact on global IT/BPO outsourcing. Some of these technology-driven trends that will direct the future of the global outsourcing industry include:
- Automation/Process Automation – Eliminating human intervention in a process by pre-defining the process to ensure its applicability to all possible scenarios. Automation as a standalone technology is largely limited to repetitive tasks such as: data entry and validation, email notification, Interactive Voice Response (IVR), etc.
- Robotics Process Automation (RPA) – Technology that allows configuration of software or a ‘robot’ to capture and interpret existing applications for processing a transaction, manipulating data, triggering responses, and communicating with other digital systems. E.g. making ‘if/then’ decisions and rules, extracting and reformatting data into reports/ dashboards, reading and writing to databases, etc.
- Artificial Intelligence (AI) – Combining cognitive automation, machine learning, reasoning, hypothesis generation and analysis, natural language processing and intentional algorithm mutation to produce insights and analytics at or above human capability. Increasingly, AI and RPA are used together as ‘Intelligent Automation’ where the system goes beyond routine tasks to draw a conclusion e.g. approval of insurance claims, etc.
- Cloud – Services made available to users on demand via the Internet from a service provider server (cloud) located at a geographically distinct location eliminating the need for on-premises servers and solutions. For example, adoption of services like Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure are increasingly eliminating the need for local data centers.
- Digital Services – A service that can be entirely automated and can be controlled by the user of the service. These services can be delivered through a range of digital services tools including like analytics, mobility, IoT, automation, cloud, etc.
- As a Service (aaS) – Providing IT/ technology services as commodity over the Internet as a service covering hardware, software, services, etc. Includes a range of services like SaaS, IaaS, PaaS, etc.
- Analytics – A range of business intelligence and processing solutions to assess data sets to drive business decisions
- Internet of Things (IoT) – Interrelated web-connected physical devices (smart devices) with the ability to transfer data over a network without requiring human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction e.g. smart fridge