The automation generation: the AI-powered workforce


By Mark Fioretto, Area Vice President and Managing Director Australia and New Zealand, UiPath, enterprise automation
Monday, 29 May, 2023

The automation generation: the AI-powered workforce

Current macroeconomic factors are causing disruption in workforces worldwide, forcing business leaders to operate with leaner teams and reduced budgets. This can lead to widespread burnout felt across departments, functions and demographics. To help manage this reality, business leaders are seeking solutions that’ll help them gain a competitive edge and empower employees to be more productive despite these challenges.

AI-powered automation is emerging as the solution that helps employees improve their productivity and enhance workplace engagement, and enables organisations to provide better, more personalised customer experiences. This is because it allows workers to find and analyse data more easily, respond to customer inquiries smarter and faster, and streamline repetitive, time-consuming tasks.

As a result of this shift to AI in the enterprise, a new generation of workers has been born: the automation generation. Unlike the previous defining generational categories, the automation generation encompasses all ages and demographics. It represents the entirety of today’s workers who are embracing AI-powered automation to be more collaborative, creative and productive.

To better understand this new dynamic, UiPath surveyed more than 6400 workers worldwide to capture what’s driving the automation generation, the challenges it faces, and the ways in which it is using technology to better individuals and their workplaces.

Burnout and how AI can address it

It should come as no surprise that workers are feeling more pressure and taking on more responsibilities in their jobs — 78% of Australian workers say they are experiencing burnout and 32% say they’ve been asked to take on more tasks at work in the past six months because of layoffs and hiring freezes.

Leading contributors to burnout include: working beyond scheduled hours (45%); pressure from managers/leadership (39%); and too much time spent on tactical tasks (29%).

Most Australian workers want automation, with 67% saying it will help address burnout and enhance job satisfaction, and 64% reporting it will empower them to do their jobs better.

Younger employees are more receptive to the potential of AI-powered automation, with 66% of Generation Z, 69% of Millennials and 54% of Generation X workers reporting it would improve their workplaces, while only 29% of Baby Boomer respondents felt similarly.

Automation generation forging better workplace experiences

AI-powered automation is emerging as a differentiator in attracting and retaining top talent. The UiPath survey found 61% of Australian workers would view employers who use automation more favourably than those who do not.

The survey also found that 35% of Australian respondents already used AI-powered automation solutions at work — 85% of whom believe these solutions can help address burnout and enhance job satisfaction.

With an automation-first mindset and a clear understanding of what will make the automation generation thrive, employers can unlock more value from employees, accelerate innovation and lead a new era of work.

As workloads continue to increase and employees seek careers that offer greater work-life balance, AI-powered automation will prove even more critical for workplace competitiveness into the future.

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