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According to A recent survey conducted by the automation software company UiPath, a substantial majority of workers (about 60%) believe that AI-powered automation solutions can mitigate burnout and significantly improve job satisfaction. Additionally, 57% of respondents expressed a more positive perception of employers who integrate business automation to support their employees and streamline operations than employers who don’t, reflecting their positive attitude towards such practices.
As workloads intensify, 28% of people report taking on extra responsibilities due to layoffs or hiring freezes. As many as 29% of workers worldwide experience burnout. This is fueling a growing reliance on AI tools for relief.
The generation of automation
These factors are contributing to the emergence of what has been termed the “automation generation”: professionals who proactively adopt automation and AI to improve collaboration, foster creativity, and increase productivity, regardless of the age or demographic data.
These individuals actively seek technologies that enhance their professional and personal lives, while striving to avoid feeling dehumanized.
One of the survey’s key revelations is that 31% of respondents are actively using business automation solutions in their workplaces.
The automation generation subgroup believe they have the resources and support they need (87%) to perform their responsibilities effectively. Additionally, 83% of these workers believe business automation solutions can effectively mitigate burnout and improve job satisfaction.
“With over half of respondents saying they believe automation can address burnout and improve job fulfillment, it is clear that AI-powered business automation technology is already having a positive impact on business and technical workers and is helping them reduce time spent on repetitive tasks and focus on more critical and rewarding work,” Brigette McInnis-Day, chief people officer at UiPath, told VentureBeat.
He pointed out that this statement is strengthened by the fact that among respondents who are already using business automation solutions, 80% believe these solutions allow them to do their job more effectively and 79% have a more positive perception of employers who implement business automation versus those who don’t.
The survey, administered in March 2023, was conducted in partnership with Researchscape. It collected online responses from 6,460 executives worldwide. The main results have been weighted to ensure representation of each country’s GDP, with the following distribution: United States (55%), Japan (10%), Germany (9%), India (8%), United Kingdom (7 %), France (6%), Australia (4%) and Singapore (2%).
Tackle office workloads through artificial intelligence
The survey reveals that workers around the world are increasingly adopting automation and AI-powered tools to tackle mundane tasks.
Specifically, respondents expressed a desire for automation to help with tasks such as data analysis (52%), data entry/creation (50%), technical/IT problem solving (49%) and report generation (48%).
When asked about the sources of their burnout and work fatigue, respondents highlighted working beyond scheduled hours (40%), pressure from managers and leadership (32%) and excessive time devoted to tactical activities ( 27%) as the main causes.
“AI-powered automation emerges as a solution to alleviate these top causes of burnout by enabling workers to quickly and easily locate and analyze data while streamlining repetitive and time-consuming tasks,” said McInnis -Day at VentureBeat.
Workers of the automation generation emphasize flexibility, career advancement and concentrated working hours. In terms of the impact of automation tools on their work, respondents expressed a desire for more flexibility in their work environments (34%), time spent learning new skills (32%) and hours spent on critical tasks (27%).
“Unlike previous generational categories, the Automation generation spans all ages and all demographics,” McInnis-Day explained. “They are the professionals who are embracing AI to be more collaborative, creative and productive, as well as using these technologies to deliver more fulfilling and positive work experiences, enrich their personal lives and keep them from feeling like robots overall. They’re looking for a renewed and revived purpose in their work, and automation is helping them make it happen.
Unsurprisingly, the survey revealed that younger employees are more receptive to these new technologies. A majority of Gen Z (69%), Millennial (63%) and Gen X (51%) respondents strongly believe that automation has the potential to improve their job performance.
“Among the workers surveyed, 31% of respondents said they already use business automation solutions (of this group, 39% were Millennials and 42% Gen Z). Additionally, of the 31% who are already using business automation solutions, 87% believe they have the resources and support they need to do their jobs effectively,” added McInnis-Day. “The results demonstrate that employees who use AI-powered automation believe in its ability to advance their career and support work-life balance.”
The growing demand for automation and AI-based tools
According to McInnis-Day, persistent economic uncertainty and the need for organizations to do more with fewer resources will drive a growing demand for automation and AI-powered tools. You said companies that take an open and adaptive approach to implementing AI are best positioned to attract skilled employees who can contribute to their success.
“The primary asset that the automation generation identified as the key aspect that would help them do their job better and/or progress was technical tools and software,” he said. “Fifty-eight percent of respondents said they are looking for these technology tools to help them respond to today’s economic and labor market pressures.”
He advises business leaders to equip their employees with AI-powered automation tools to thrive in an automation-driven world and ease resource constraints.
“These survey results provide compelling evidence that integrating AI-powered automation across the organization is not only a wise investment, but also aligns with employee preferences,” he said. “With workloads increasing and employees seeking careers that offer a healthy work-life balance, integrating AI-powered automation becomes crucial to deliver more fulfilling and positive work experiences.”
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