The Real Value of Robotic Process Automation (RPA)
How RPA can make your business more efficient, productive, and consistent
There is a reason many businesses succeed by doing things “the way they’ve always been done.” Finding and systematizing what works is an effective business strategy, after all. But as businesses across the world adapt to newer, more efficient, and more streamlined business strategies, there is an increasing need to evolve with the times.
All signs point to the fact that automation, bots, and artificial intelligence (AI) are here to stay. To some, this trend represents a potential threat, but it’s unlikely that businesses—and the people who make them run—will be replaced by bots, automation, or AI. It is possible, however, that businesses will be replaced by other businesses that use these tools to streamline and improve their operations.
What is RPA
Robotic Process Automation (RPA) employs robots (or bots, for short) to automate repetitive manual business tasks—primarily those that involve pulling, categorizing, summarizing, or reporting data. These tasks include filling out forms, providing 24/7 customer support, executing HR workflows, and other similarly granular tasks that lend themselves to rules-based processes triggered by particular events.
These bots perform tasks predictably and interact with pages and data the way humans would, drawing on existing data to solve problems.
It should be noted that these tasks typically monopolize employee workloads, even though they don’t necessarily require the valuable human skills of problem-solving, strategy, or critical thinking. Further, when assigned to employees, these labor-intensive, data-heavy processes—which must be accurate and consistent—are subject to the margin of human error.
The number of businesses using RPA is growing rapidly. Companies of all sizes are using RPA to streamline business processes across the board, utilizing bots to execute processes and thus ensuring consistency and accuracy while freeing up valuable human hours for more critical business tasks.
Interested in learning more about RPA?
RPA can help your business realize a digital evolution—saving your company valuable time, money, and resources in the short- and long-term. Speak with one of AVIO’s consultants today to discover how RPA can help your business succeed.
The Value of RPA
Automate tedious tasks, so employees can bring even greater value to the company.
Many employees become bored, overworked, or easily burnt out when they are tasked with massive data projects or repetitive functions—things like basic customer service support or paperwork and filing. There are times when a human brain is necessary and adds tangible value to an organization, and these menial tasks do not typically fall within that category.
Further, companies who utilize RPA typically see greater employee satisfaction and retention, all while getting the most value out of their team members by freeing up their time for more high-level, strategic tasks.
Improve process efficiencies, minimize errors, and achieve consistency.
By optimizing human involvement, RPA can simplify and streamline business processes, leading to greater customer satisfaction and the consistent implementation of best practices. In short, there is no more guesswork as to whether a process that is vital to your company’s function is being executed to the highest level.
When it comes to streamlining and efficiency, RPA accelerates exception resolution and reduces escalation rates. By providing consistent support and quickly resolving issues that arise, your company saves valuable time and energy.
According to Gartner research, human error in the finance function produces, on average, 25,000 hours of avoidable rework at a cost of $878,000 per year. This improved accuracy rate can give your company peace of mind while giving customers the sense that your company will consistently follow through on its promises.
It is, of course, important to maximize accountability across all business functions, ensuring tasks are done on time and correctly, all the time. RPA tracks the actions of each bot, giving you increased visibility of what is getting done and when.
Reduce operating costs across the board.
When RPA takes on a task a human has traditionally performed, the results are frequently improved usage of time and resources, including the time it takes to redo work, correct errors, find a process that works, or adapt to new factors in a given process.
RPA allows your business to:
- Optimize resources
- Reduce SLA penalties
- Minimize rework & failure rates
- Shorten process cycle time
- Increase agility
- Improve predictability
Increase business flexibility, scalability, and fast-track time to market.
Perhaps the greatest value RPA can give your company is its tremendous flexibility and scalability. Humans cannot—and should not, for many reasons—work around the clock. Bots, on the other hand, can work 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.
Further, scalability becomes an issue when you are faced with the need to hire a large amount of high-quality, reliable employees, often at a moment’s notice. RPA reduces those barriers, allowing your company to scale and adapt seamlessly as both the development process and the market evolve.
RPA helps businesses:
- Avoid compliance or SLA penalties
- Reduce development costs
- Reuse SOA infrastructure / existing applications
- Improve development cycle time
- Improve customer satisfaction
- Improve user satisfaction
- Capitalize on 24/7 productivity
- Easily scale
All Signs Point to RPA
The business world is evolving quickly, and the nation’s leading firms are predicting RPA as a key asset for growing companies in the coming years.
Frost & Sullivan is a large market research firm that helps companies scale and grow. Their research indicates that “82% of organizations plan to implement RPA in at least one new department in the next 24 months.”
Gartner, a technology research and consulting firm, predicts that “Global robotic process automation (RPA) software end-user spending is projected to reach $2.9 billion in 2022, an increase of 19.5% from 2021.”
The trend is already headed toward automation—and that trend will only increase as businesses see the benefits of RPA in real-time.
RPA In Real Life - A Use Case
A well-known packaged goods holding company faced challenges in product categorization. Their customers were becoming increasingly frustrated because they had to spend more and more time looking for products that weren’t categorized correctly.
In part, the issue was that the holding company had hundreds of different products, across different markets, all with different definitions. The result was a muddied customer understanding of what they offered and where to find it.
In the past, this scenario would require employees to manually read and match SKUs with the appropriate category in complex spreadsheets. This process took extensive lengths of time and was prone to errors and inefficiencies that were difficult to find and remedy.
The company implemented RPA and quickly automated its product categorization, based on global standards. Then, local datasets were matched with the global standards.
The product database improved greatly in accuracy and boosted customer satisfaction, allowing customers to recognize and locate the products they needed when they needed them.
Employees for the company were empowered to optimize their time for high-value tasks and avoided the inevitable burnout that comes with tedious, large-scale data entry projects.
In summary, RPA allows you to maximize your most valuable resources, giving your company the consistency and accuracy your customers expect, all while optimizing employee time and increasing job satisfaction and retention.
Ready to maximize your resources?
Reach out to one of AVIO’s consultants today to learn about how RPA can meet your company’s unique needs and optimize your productivity for years to come.