Business Processes Are Learning to Hack Themselves

The factory floor is a marvel of automation. With a press of a button, the whole place can seem to run itself. But although today’s factories use automated workflows, process change is still mostly manual. When demands arise in an industrial environment, managers and engineers must interrupt the automation to update the processes that make the machines go. Now, thanks to machine learning algorithms, it’s becoming possible for smart software to scrutinize data from a variety of sources — sensors on machines or changes in supply chains, for instance — and redesign processes in real time. In our survey (not yet publicly published) of almost 170 industrial organizations, 96% of respondents agreed or strongly agreed that machine learning is automating process-change management inside their organization. Overall, more than half of respondents…


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