6 Predictions Around Service Delivery Automation

Service Delivery Automation (SDA) is a hot topic today, offering significant potential value in terms of inorganic cost reduction and speedy implementation with low risk. As a consequence, many market participants, whether enterprises or business process services providers, are exploring the opportunities. However, the burgeoning SDA market includes technologies that are still relatively unknown to many potential buyers in terms of solution features, deployment models, supporting frameworks, and commercial aspects. Recent Everest Group research brings some clarity to the market, and offers an evaluation of technology and vendors.


The overall SDA market – currently valued at US$65-75 million – has experienced explosive growth in recent years. And that growth is expected to continue for a couple of reasons:

  • As pilot programs demonstrate success, an ever-increasing number of programs will graduate to full-scale deployment
  • Early adopters’ success will inspire confidence among wait-and-see organizations to adopt SDA more rapidly

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The twin benefits of high value and low risk are critical to this rapid SDA adoption.

From a value perspective, SDA can reduce costs, improve processes, and offer quicker time-to-value realization.

On the low risk side, these systems are generally non-invasive, accessing underlying systems to do their work, and they are comparatively easy to roll out and remediate.

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Looking into its crystal ball, Everest Group predicts the following as far as SDA is concerned:

1. SDA will have increasing levels of intelligence

As Artificial Intelligence (AI) is one of the key benefits of SDA, systems are expected to add more intelligence to their robots over time, including machine learning and Natural Language Processing (NLP). These additions will enhance these systems’ ability to deal with complex rules, converting the tools to expert systems.

2. Partnerships among technology vendors will rise sharply
The dual need to scale up and to reach broader geographies will require technology vendors to build more reseller and implementation partnerships.

3. Business Process Service (BPS) providers will increase their SDA capabilities
BPS providers, which are already using a wide array of approaches to offer SDA tools, will increasingly build automation into the scope of their contacts, resulting in pricing models that will include elements of transactions and outcomes.

4. The new breed of robotic service providers will develop new market segments
Newer robotic-enabled service providers, such as Genfour, Symphony, and Virtual Operations, are working with clients that have tended not to outsource in the past, a new market that is expected to grow.

5. Capital investment in SDA technology companies will increase
This fast-growing market is attractive to venture capitalists and other financial institutions that invest in small companies with must-have technologies, as well as larger service providers that want to include this technology in their service suites.

6. Enterprise software will become more intelligent
A currently trend – intelligent functionality built into enterprise software – will accelerate, changing the dynamics of the business process services market, shrinking the size of the workforce and opening new opportunities for different kinds of services.

More details in Service Delivery Automation (SDA) – The Story Beyond Marketing Messages and an Assessment of SDA Tools - by Everest Group