Companies embracing workplace automation report greater job satisfaction

Companies embracing workplace automation report greater job satisfaction

New research from ServiceNow (NYSE: NOW ), Forbes’ No. 1 World’s Most Innovative Company in 2018, reveals employees in European companies embracing wo

New research from ServiceNow (NYSE: NOW ), Forbes’ No. 1 World’s Most Innovative Company in 2018, reveals employees in European companies embracing workplace automation report greater job satisfaction (62%), customer satisfaction (71%) boosted productivity (72%) and increased time for creativity (62%). Two thirds say workplace automation improves their organisation’s financial performance and nearly half believe they benefit from job creation.

European employees express that the rise in digitisation enables them to benefit from automating menial tasks, subsequently improving their opportunities for advancement (64%) and more meaningful work. Yet fewer than one in three (27%) of companies studied ( 27%) have automated the processes with which they work, leaving over two thirds of work processes with substantial manual activity.

The study surveyed 1,820 full-time European workers who regularly interact with technology, exploring their attitudes towards and experiences of workplace automation.

The Netherlands tops the charts with the highest level of process automation at 45%, with the UK sitting at the top spot for the highest level of manual processes at 35%. Employees based in the Netherlands also have the fewest concerns about automation — 38% have ‘no concerns at all’. French employees are the least concerned that automation will eliminate their jobs (13%), closely followed by employees in the Netherlands (14%). In Germany this number rises to 19%.

Employees worry more about change than fear the machines
There has been much rhetoric around ‘fear of machines’, yet employees studied worry more about change than robots taking their jobs:

– 31% are concerned about learning new skills or processes and 28% worry about changing the way their job is performed

Only 17% worry about losing their job

Employees in highly digitised companies report they benefit from increased job creation (42%) as opposed to only 23% in less automated companies (23%)

86% view AI technologies as the future of work

Under a fifth (16%) fear being told what to do by a machine

Employees have a desire to learn and improve digital skills

– 66% of employees have a desire to learn or improve their digital skills

15% say their job requires advanced digital skills

75% believe they have the digital skills required to perform their job well

Only 18% find adapting to digitised work processes difficult

Increased financial success
Employees in ‘highly automated’ organisations studied are more likely than those with less automated processes to report that their firms have high revenue growth, exceed financial goals and are much more profitable than competitors.

55% of those in highly automated companies see higher profitability than their competitors, compared to only 31% in less automated companies

In highly automated companies 21% see ‘much higher’ profitability vs. 5% for others

36% of highly automated companies report that they exceeded their financial goals compared to just 16% for others

“Highly automated companies are making use of digital workflows to simplify complex tasks, respond rapidly to users’ needs and take a predictive approach to maintenance,” says Chris Pope, VP Innovation, ServiceNow. “Automation enables employees to reclaim time spent on unfulfilling tasks and refocus it on more meaningful work. The result is significantly greater efficiency, productivity and job satisfaction compared to companies with more manually-led operations.

Activities such as resolving customer issues are critical to customer and employee satisfaction, so they should receive more focus from an automation standpoint in the future . The question businesses need to be asking now is how they can make the necessary changes to realise these benefits, ” adds Pope

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