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Singaporeans excited about workplace automation, but apprehensive about learning new skills

Singaporeans excited about workplace automation, but apprehensive about learning new skills

Singapore employees are optimistic that workplace automation brings new opportunities, yet they are most concerned about having to change the way they do their job and having to learn new skills or processes. These were the findings from ServiceNow’s ‘Global Automation Survey of Corporate Workers’ with 6,477 working professionals across 12 countries, including 304 respondents from Singapore, to gather insight into workers’ attitudes and experiences with workplace automation.

The survey revealed that employees are excited about the opportunities that come with workplace automation. Singapore and global employees say that process automation has a positive effect on personal productivity (82% compared to 80% of global respondents), and workplace automation can enhance efficiency (83% compared to 75% globally), boost productivity (77% compared to 69% globally) and improve the organization’s competitiveness (71% compared to 61% globally).

Surprisingly, job loss was not a top concern amongst respondents. Instead, the top two concerns of Singaporean respondents were about learning new skills or processes (48% of Singapore employees, compared to 37% of global respondents; and having to change the way they do their jobs (48% of Singapore employees, compared to 33% globally).

Employee training is crucial for automation adoption

The survey found that training directly correlates to how easy it is for employees to adapt to work process automation: globally, 85% of respondents who said they received excellent training found adapting to automation was easy, compared with only 39% for those who said they received poor training.

“People aren’t fearful of machines; rather, they’re apprehensive about change,” said Mitch Young, VP and GM, APJ, ServiceNow. “There is tremendous opportunity for companies to get ahead of their competition – be it winning business or attracting and retaining talent – by evolving the workforce for greater automation while ensuring excellent training and preparation of employees for adoption of digital workflows."

Automation brings positive employee impact

Singapore and global respondents also agreed that automation at the workplace results in positive impact on the workforce. When asked about the benefits of workplace automation, 80% of Singapore employees (compared to 74% globally) said automation simplified work processes, reduced repetitive tasks (75% compared to 71% globally), increased opportunities for advancement (58% compared to 44% globally), and increased time for creativity (68 % compared to 59% globally).

“Digital transformation is no longer an industry buzzword; it’s a business priority that’s driving real results for organizations across the globe. These findings reveal the business value of digital workflows and its positive impact on the workforce. As such, it is imperative that companies take a deliberate approach to technology adoption and employee training to achieve greater business outcomes, and successfully attract and retain talent,” said Mitch Young, VP and GM, APJ, ServiceNow.