At the start of 2020, few of us thought digital transformation would become such a critical part of our business. The pandemic has accelerated investment in transforming everything as a means of survival.

We’ve had to automate our warehouses to keep distance between drivers delivering goods and associates unloading trucks. To speed development of the COVID-19 vaccine, companies like Takeda were able to accelerate drug discovery and patient trials to deliver results in record time thanks to  Robot Process Automation (RPA).

And while the vaccine rollout promises the return of some semblance of normalcy, it doesn’t mean we will return to business as usual. The business norms that have taken hold during the pandemic aren’t simply going to wither away with the virus. The trends around automation have accelerated, and there is no reason to believe they will slow down.

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Let’s look at four emerging automation trends that will impact business in 2021.

1. Hyperautomation

The trends around automation have accelerated, and there is no reason to believe they will slow down.

Gartner declared hyperautomation its number-one strategic technology trend of 2020, and it was the only trend to return to the list in 2021. In a nutshell, hyperautomation seeks to marry various automation techniques to achieve true end-to-end automated solutions.

More simply, hyperautomation is applying structure around the chaos. Organizations have been steadily automating pieces of business processes, but few have stepped back to