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Three-Quarters of Organisations in Singapore Are Adapting Their Business Model to the Economic Climate


Data released by SS&C Blue Prism reveals that 35% of businesses in Singapore will use automation to support staff to perform tasks, as they adapt to challenging economic conditions.

The poll of 94 decision-makers in Singapore was part of a broader study in APAC that included 244 leaders from Australia, Hong Kong, India, and Thailand. Fewer businesses in Singapore are turning to automation to support staff, compared to the average of 44% across all markets studied.

The research found that organisations are being forced to adapt their business models to cope with rising costs, inflation, and low unemployment. However, organisational culture and a lack of skills are acting as barriers to successful transformation.

More than three quarters (77%) of Singaporean businesses are likely to make changes to their business model to contest with economic climate (73% across all markets). 43% are looking to reduce their operating costs (54% in APAC), while 49% seek to diversify their product offerings (45% in APAC).

Leveraging Automation to Augment the Workforce 

Businesses are turning to automation to support their workforce and better serve their customers, rather than cutting jobs. In fact, only 18% said they will look to reduce the size of their workforce as a response to the current economic climate. However Singaporean businesses are more likely to reduce the size of their workforce, compared to the average across all markets of 14%.

More than two in five (44%) decision-makers say the primary use of automation is to remove repetitive tasks, so that workers can focus on more valuable work (APAC average 39%). While 44% use automation to support customer-facing services (29% in APAC), 32% say they use automation to help with sophisticated and complex operations (24% in APAC), and 29% use automation for data processing (31% in APAC).

Facing Challenges Ahead

But Singaporean organisations face a cultural and skills barrier to making their transformation efforts a success. More than half of decision-makers (55%) say culture or mindset is the biggest barrier to success, compared to 50% across all markets surveyed. 40% say they lack skills and resources, and 20% believe there isn’t a strategic approach to transformation.

“In the current economic climate, it seems that all businesses must adapt if they expect to prosper. How they approach this transformation will be the key to their success. Creating a culture where teams are consulted and engaged throughout the process is the recipe for success, rather than delivering a mandate from on high,” said Dan Ternes, APAC Chief Technology Officer at SS&C Blue Prism.

He added: “Despite the negative headlines about generative AI taking people’s jobs, the data in this report shows that employers don’t intend to use automation as a vehicle to replace their human workforce. In fact, employers are turning to automation to ease workers’ lives, so they can focus on more interesting and rewarding tasks. Creating a seamless link between your digital and human workers facilitates their collaboration which is a key ingredient for success with transformation.”

Other key Singaporean business statistics from SS&C Blue Prism’s data:

  • 46% of decision-makers believe that a top-down approach to transformation is most successful.
  • 63% believe that improving customer touchpoints for better service and capability is the key priority of digital transformation in the current economic climate.
  • 12% feel that senior leadership is not interested or engaged on digital transformation.