Forrester predicts that the global RPA software market will grow to $4.2 billion in 2023; the market for RPA services will top $12 billion. Although North America and Europe still account for most of this market, RPA adoption has gained significant momentum in China over the past 18 months and Forrester expects it to reach a tipping point soon.

A new report by Forrester breaks down some key trends in the China RPA market, such as:

  • RPA is seen as a way to make employees more effective.  RPA technologies have the potential to eliminate repetitive tasks and reduce headcount, but neither of these is the major driver for clients in China. Instead, the primary reason for adopting RPA is to help employees focus on higher-value tasks.
  • Financial services and the back office are early adopters. Vendor data shows that financial services accounts for the greatest number of RPA clients in China. Manufacturing, high-tech, and business services firms are also interested in implementing RPA technologies in 2020.
  • Chinese customers need help going beyond low-hanging fruit and scaling bot deployment. Well-defined, standardized back-office scenarios have earned RPA initial credibility, but adoption in adjacent departments requires deep understanding of operational details.
  • Security and operational concerns. Concerns around security, data privacy, and regulation are another barrier to broad RPA adoption. Most vendors offer on-premises deployment as an option for large enterprises, where many systems run behind the firewall. Some vendors have applied for software certifications to demonstrate their security level.

More insights are also available in this blog post by Guannan Lu, analyst and author of the report.