Very well said on the CFEngine blog:
Automate or die
IT-operations that are not highly automated will not be able to keep up with expected productivity, quality of service and costs.
In addition to improved productivity and increased quality of service, automation will make your IT-operations more cost effective. Actually, in order to stay competitive, I would argue that highly automated IT-operations is the only way for IT-organizations to meet the agility and cost requirements of today.
Of course this is focused on systems-management, but in our network automation practice we see exactly the same thing. Even the figures can be compared. I have an example of a network-team that went down from 25 to 5 people while doubling the amount of devices. Talking about a reduction in cost.