As many companies grow and increasingly implement digital solutions there has been a commensurate increase in the amount of repetitive, rules-based activities, such as order entry, refund processing or new customer entry. When these rules-based activities are handled by people they can often result in many challenges for businesses, including poor customer satisfaction, difficulty handling peaks and valleys in demand and low employee morale. The solution can be Robotic Process Automation (RPA) .
What Is Robotic Process Automation?
In simplest terms, RPA uses computer programming (bots) to automate the repetitive, rules-based activities that were previously handled by human resources.
It’s important to understand this is not the future, this is happening right now. And it is proving effective for many businesses of varying sizes, but most commonly in the $100M-$1B range. 69% of $1B businesses are using automation, while 53% of $100M-$1B are . In fact, according to Gartner, by 2020, 40% of large enterprises will have adopted an RPA software tool, compared to less than 10% in Fall 2018.
Business Challenges and RPA
Why the increase in RPA adoption? More and more companies are realizing that the complex and costly business challenges related to human resources they encounter can be easily addressed through automation. Among them:
Poor customer satisfaction caused by incorrect information and lengthy wait times.
- RPA automates repetitive processes to eliminate human error and decrease processing time by as much as 40%. RPA is faster, more accurate and more consistent than human processing.
Difficulty managing human resources for peaks and valleys in demand.
- RPA is immediately scalable and works 24/7.
Reduced hiring plans.
- RPA allows CIOs or Business leaders to use bots for repetitive, rules-based processing and use existing employees for other activities.
Complexities of having different forms of data across multiple systems, due to a large number of acquisitions or organic growth.
- RPA allows Leaders of Operations functions to standardize and execute widely varied data and systems in a uniform manner.
Low employee morale or productivity.
- RPA releases human resources from repetitive, mundane tasks to be better utilized for strategic/value-added thinking and creativity.
Low Channel Partner satisfaction due to errors and delays.
- RPA can improve on the inaccuracies and slow turnaround timesthat Channel partners often experience in their interactions with a manufacturer.
Who Can Benefit from RPA?
RPA was first utilized by Financial Services businesses, though today Retail is the most advanced in RPA adaptation. Although RPA would seem like an ideal fit for Tech Companies, most are not far along on the adoption maturity model. At this time the industries that can most benefit from RPA include Ecommerce sites, Manufacturers, Industrial Distributors, Travel/Hospitality and Technology (Devices & Software), as well as companies in any industry that are large in size, or have acquired many other companies resulting in high complexity operations, or have experienced high growth for an extended period of time.
Is RPA Right for Your Company?
To determine whether RPA is right for your company answer the following questions:
- Where are you doing manual work?
- Where do you have large teams of people?
- What repetitive tasks are employees handling?
- As volume grows, how do you scale?
- Do you plan to scale with people or automation?
- What projects/enhancements on your IT roadmap are below the line?
- What projects/enhancements are too expensive to complete through IT?
If you find that your business utilizes large amounts of personnel hours on repetitive tasks, RPA could be the solution.
Robotic process automation has far from reached its peak. With legacy and home-built platforms prolific throughout companies of all sizes, there is plenty of opportunity to improve business processes for increased employee morale, customer satisfaction and bottom-line results. It’s no longer a question of should you use bots, it is now a question of where to start.
eClerx Digital provides complete robotic process automation support from its own RPA platform (Roboworx), custom bot development for UiPath, Automation Anywhere, Blue Prism or WorkFusion as well as intelligent automation which combines artificial intelligence to RPA. Learn more about our Intelligent Robotic Process Automation offering.