In a nutshell, robotic process automation, or RPA, is software that automates business processes. Essentially, it acts as a robot that learns standardized and repeatable tasks, like data entry or logging into applications. Just think about something you do on a computer all the time in the exact same way …. and then think about what your day would be like if those monotonous, repetitive tasks were done for you.
Thanks to easy-to-implement and use programs, anyone on your team can automate a tedious series of tasks by, for example, by recording the steps they complete with an RPA program. Each program has different methods, but the general goal is for these applications to easily integrate into existing systems with minimal user training.
In a sense, these programs are similar to macros, but they incorporate machine learning to complete tasks with increasing accuracy and intelligence. For example, we recently wrote about Ephesoft, which can scan documents, extract the pertinent information, and then release the data into the appropriate channels. Ephesoft’s application utilizes supervised machine learning to take in user feedback and identify scanned content with increasing precision.
This concept sounds amazing and revolutionary, but as a professional, you may be wondering what RPA’s implications will be for the future of business. In the long run, will we be glad that tech has advanced so far? Here at Blue Fish, we think so, and here’s why.
One major concern that often appears in discussions about automation is the potential for resulting layoffs. However, RPA software offers companies the opportunity to free employees from the drudgery of data entry and elevate them to more satisfying validation roles where they are actually training machine learning. In our experience with clients who adopt RPA, they’ve reallocated their human resources to more fulfilling roles, instead of cutting jobs.
For some companies, time wasted equals lost customers. In any situation where completing sales requires your company to process information (e.g. mortgage applications at a financial institution), it’s crucial that you process it as quickly as possible. With RPA, not only can you process more information faster, you can leave the system running 24/7 so that your productivity is no longer constrained by business hours. As businesses find themselves with increasing amounts of data to process, the ability to do so at lightning speed is quickly becoming an indispensable capability.
Compliance and Accuracy
Once a process is established within the RPA application, you can rely on the software to complete tasks with greater accuracy than any employee could manage. You know that feeling where your eyes start to glaze over when you do the same thing again and again? Computers don’t have that problem. Since the software is simply following a set of procedures, you can expect the same results every time, and even incorporate tracking capabilities that support all of your compliance needs.
We said this once before, but can you imagine how much else you could get done in a day with the time recovered from tasks that you repeat over and over, but that don’t add any productive value to your day? As team members are freed from tasks that, while necessary, don’t take full advantage of their productive capabilities, your team’s output can increase quickly.
Overall, RPA holds promising changes for the business world. While it may change the shape of the workforce, we believe its benefits will help businesses increase both productivity and overall output quality.
Are you finding your team members stuck in monotonous tasks that hinder increased productivity? Let’s discuss what solutions might be right for you.
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