How Robotic Process Automation can help enterprises gain competitive advantage

How Robotic Process Automation can help enterprises gain competitive advantage

Robotic Process Automation Solutions

Over the past decade, there has been a paradigm shift in the usage of technologies. Businesses are rapidly embracing automation solutions based on smart technologies such as Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) over the conventional IT solutions.

The RPA technology global market reached $271 million in 2016 and is expected to grow to $1.2 billion by 2021, at a compound annual growth rate of 36%.

The primary reason for such exponential market growth and the rapid adoption of RPA technology is the benefits it can deliver; reduced costs, improved productivity, enhanced compliance and customer experiences which ultimately empower businesses with competitive advantage.

RPA solutions are used to automate business critical processes that are rule-based and time-intensive. These processes are usually part of a larger end-to-end process execution cycle developed within other technological solutions like BPM and ERP. A RPA solution seamlessly integrates with these existing systems, utilizing its capabilities to enable greater operational agility. Thus, businesses need not invest in expensive custom IT project development and wait for years to realize its benefits. They are instead utilizing RPA solutions that are quick to implement and deliver positive ROI within months.

The role of software bots: where and what type of processes can be optimized

Large enterprises have a wide range of complex operations consisting of repetitive and mind-numbing tasks. Using RPA solution, several human activities can be replicated for various functions such as finance, compliance, treasury, marketing.

Mentioned below are just a few commonly automated processes:

Benefits of RPA
Adoption of RPA technology is on the rise because it has the capability to deliver quick business benefits that ultimately empowers enterprises to stay ahead of the competition. Here are some benefits that can have the most impact on business.

  • Increased adherence to compliance – RPA helps remove the data gaps between the varying sources and handles all the actions done by the software robots through automation. The set of activities performed by bots are recorded for better auditability and traceability. This allows employees to manage the compliance issues quickly and accurately.
  • Enhanced customer experience – RPA implementation is an effective way to reduce the burden of high-volume and repetitive tasks like claims processing and purchase order issuing. This ensures the best possible customer experience.
  • Improved productivity – Quite obviously, the time that a human employee takes for handling a task, is way more than the time that a robot takes. Moreover, human errors are reduced to almost zero. Therefore, RPA can double the productivity as well as save process handling time.

Challenges to face
However, if organizations want to make use of the RPA technology at its best, there are certain considerations that they need to make well in advance. Let’s look at the key challenges of RPA implementation –

  • Identifying RPA eligible processes – Although the major processes which can be automated are quite clearly defined, it’s often tricky to identify the exact activities which can be handled using a RPA solution. This often proves to be the most challenging factor when it comes to implement RPA.
  • Handling cultural shift – For most of companies it’s a struggle to achieve the technological transformation since it’s an evolutionary change in the work environment and it’s difficult to make the employees familiar with the new processes. However, most enterprises face this challenge not because of their business strategies, but because of their work culture. But there are proven ways that help handle all these issues.
  • Setting the right expectation – This is one of the biggest obstacles in terms of implementing RPA. Instead of considering this technology as the ultimate solution for all operational problems, enterprises need to identify the limits of what this technology can do and what it cannot. In that way, they will be able to set realistic and achievable expectations, which, in turn, will allow the organizations to make the most of RPA.

Proper considerations and planning will allow the enterprises to overcome above challenges and completely leverage the business value that RPA can offer.

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