Billed as 2 days of learning, growing and collaborating, UiPath’s FORWARD III 2019 event in Las Vegas certainly lived up to the hype. Whether it was the track sessions that provided hands-on opportunities to look, feel and experience what was coming down the pike at UiPath, or the deep dives into product and technical topics and the strategic business insights coming from the army that is the UiPath team members, expectations were obliterated in a good way.
For the Auxis team that was in attendance, having the ability to meet and compare notes each day with partners, vendors and clients from all corners of the globe, only made the event that much sweeter.
Here are a few things that stood out:
In some of the presentations and client success stories over the course of the three days, it was interesting and notable to see how nonprofits are using Robotic Process Automation to directly impact people. Members from the United Nations International Computing Centre (UNICC) and the nonprofit The New York Foundling, talked about how they’re using automation to save lives. The New York Foundling is using UiPath robots to give clinicians back 16 hours each month – that they can now use to spend more time providing services instead of cutting and pasting data. The UNICC is using software robots to counter shrinking budgets and provide support for growing numbers of refugees.
In a throwback moment to when Bill Gates gave Microsoft a clear mission of “a computer on every desk and in every home.” Kevin Kroen and Julia Lamm from PwC presented their view of the journey for accelerating their vision for a digitally enabled workforce with, “a robot for every person.” Using PwC’s journey as a reference point, the two discussed how various industries and functions are embracing this concept both as a way to transform the employee experience, evolve company culture, increase productivity, and drive broader operating model transformation. They went on to say that their RPA pilot program in the United States was so successful, that the company is rolling out the program around the world. They also piloted a “digital accelerator” program that focuses on empowering citizen developers. In the first year, 1,000 employees went through the program and the turnover within that group was less than 1%.
During the week, UiPath also used the event to detail new product launches including UiPath Explorer, a new offering designed to accelerate ‘process’ understanding and automation pipelines as well as StudioX. Touted as “bringing automation to the masses,” StudioX will allow citizen developers and regular business users the ability to build and run their own automations with the help of a new profile in UiPath Studio.
UiPath also introduced UiPath Apps, Insights and Connect Enterprise. With UiPath Apps, end-users can participate in real time with robots executing unattended processes, empowering users to manage approvals and exceptions; a capability UiPath refers to as “Human-in-the-Loop.” UiPath Insights, provides powerful, embedded analytics that measure, report and align RPA operations with strategic business outcomes. With Connect Enterprise, every employee can introduce ideas for automations, creating a gamification – or crowdsourcing – capability ideal for Robotic Operations Centers of Excellence to collect opportunities and manage a pipeline of robots to free employees from mundane tasks across every corner of an enterprise.
In addition to announcing the new product launches, UiPath also announced two key acquisitions as well. Two startups, StepShot and ProcessGold were brought on board in order to give enterprise customers more tools to track and identify workflows. ProcessGold is a leading process mining vendor and its acquisition will help UiPath become the first vendor of scale to offer a solution that brings together process mining and RPA capabilities. Stepshot is a provider of Process Documentation software, which UiPath says it will use “to accelerate customers’ automation journeys by enabling them to quickly and easily record, document, and share processes as well as automate key steps in robot creation.”
Two of the most impactful moments that stood out in our estimation, were the comments made by CEO Daniel Dines and CMO Bobby Patrick in their respective keynotes:
In CEO Daniel Dines’ keynote, he talked about the company’s combined focus on the customer and culture of humility. “Humility gives a great framework of how to operate,” “It makes you listen to people; it makes you able to change your mind. It makes you actually accelerate toward solutions…” He then summed up what everyone was probably thinking: “In the ‘automation first’ era, automation is the application – and we are at the tipping point.”
For CMO Bobby Patrick, he mentioned how we’re all on a journey from rules-based technologies to experienced-based technologies that adapt to the reality of company workflows in real time…
“The automation era is in full swing — it’s a mindset shift to be able to examine your workflows and now work to bring robots into the workplace. We now sit at a point where not just developers, but also citizen developers and subject matter experts are going to be able to not only use, but also develop automation…, and this is at the point where automation itself becomes an application in its own right.”
Bobby Patrick, CMO at UiPath.
In closing, it became readily apparent, if it wasn’t already prior to the event, that UiPath is one of the fastest growing enterprise software companies in the world with a massive amount of momentum on it’s side. They are determined to change the narrative. In fact, Rebooting work was the theme of this year’s FORWARD III event. For UiPath, to reboot work means to stop working in the same repetitive, tedious, traditional way of doing things that has been the norm for so long and to start working faster, efficient, and more effectively. For that reason, knowing that we are a premier partner with UiPath and understanding that the RPA industry is expected to be a $16.2 billion market by 2023, gives us great hope and promise going into 2020 and beyond that we will indeed change the narrative and #Rebootwork.