Here's How Automation is Changing the Business Ecosystem

Despite the dearth of manufacturing activities in the pandemic, industrial automation is envisaged to rise by 4 per cent from last year
  • BY Jaspreet Kaur

    Feature Writer, BusinessEx

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  • Oct 26,2020
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  • 11 Mins Read

The pandemic is creating various challenges at individual level as well as business level. Until a universal cure is found, companies have to continue innovation and use multiple options to stay relevant in the market. In such a situation, the first term of the fiscal year has witnessed noval changes in the sphere such as rising capabilities, new sectors, forming partnerships and reinforcing customers' trust. 

According to a report by NASSCOM, technology may not prevent “black swan” events, but digital technology has emerged as a critical enabler in containing the scope and scale of impact, helping devise contextual strategies keeping in speed with rapidly-evolving conditions. Speed of delivery of digital tech-enabled solutions has also helped the enterprises, employees, and citizens be far less adversely impacted.

Automation and Artificial Intelligence (AI) – "Automation is at a tipping point of mass-transition towards wide-scale adoption," Debjani Ghosh, President at NASSCOM, said in the report.  

Embracing Automation 

Despite the dearth of manufacturing activities in the pandemic, industrial automation is envisaged to rise by 4 per cent from last year. Automation has been employ to pivot production lines to create ventilators and PPE kits in the country. 

An ICRIER study supported by NASSCOM shows that a unit rise in AI Intensity (spend on AI to total sales) can boost GDP by 2.5 per cent.

According to the cited company’s report, AI is firmly getting established as a general-purpose technology (GPT), having emerged as the critical crisis management technology in radiology to speed patient diagnosis, in facial recognition to check remote-working employee anxiety levels, in predictive citizen movement tracing, and in virtual healthcare assistance. 

Besides this, robotics and drones have been used to administer treatment and aid ailing patients. The government has been using the automation for various other purposes such as cleaning hospitals, carrying logistics activities, and substituting humans. 

As per the report, governments have eased rules on drone licenses to enable deliveries of medical essentials and assist law enforcement agencies in necessary surveillance, significantly bringing down the cost of mobility and compliance.

Rising API Economy 

With a surge of automation, API economy is rising in the country. The fintech industry was badly hit with the onset of pandemic as infusions plummeted immensely. A report by NASSCOM states that the sector showed agility, however, and repivoted to sustainable models within its core sub-sectors. Digital payments (UPI records highest transactions in September 2020 as compared to any other month since its launch), LendingTech and InsurTech have become new pivots, and digital banking - branchless, mobile banking, and neobanking are growing at fastest rates. 

Following this, edtech industry has become another prominent area. This sector has witnessed increased demand in the form of online school classes. Vedantu, Byju’s, and Unacademy, to name a few. 

Companies Adopting Technology 

The figures state that as over 90 per cent companies hit almost glitch-free services delivery within 3-4 weeks of work from home (WFH), it became evident that this time it is not an exception, but a systemic shift towards a new normal of blended workplace model. 

Video conferencing tools’ usage was recorded high during the last 3-4 months while Zoom’s usage is growing by three times. However, as this medium grows, connectivity, consistent service quality, and security will be key challenges.

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