How AI is transforming businesses worldwide
Post the PC and the dot-com revolution, the world is witnessing another significant disruption- Artificial Intelligence.
Businesses that implement AI applications will have better access to data across multiple functionalities such as customer relationship management, enterprise resource management, fraud detection, finance, people operations, IT management, and other crucial segments. AI helps businesses find solutions to complex problems in a more human-like way and automate processes. Organizations can redirect their resources towards more creative aspects such as brainstorming, innovating, and researching.
The COVID-19 pandemic required solutions in days, not weeks or months, and business leaders needed to act quickly. AI-based techniques and advanced analytics are helping organizations augment decision making during crises like the coronavirus. While machine learning models were a great choice, developing machine learning models or advanced analytical models would take around four-eight weeks. So, the pandemic accelerated the demand for developing minimum viable AI models quickly.
Despite the many naysayers who believe robots will take over human jobs in the future, AI is already revealing itself as more of an enabler than a disruptor. Here are nine examples of artificial intelligence transforming business.
1. Sales and business development
As lockdowns and stay at home orders continue, people are now moving from personal interactions to digital interactions such as online shopping and mobile banking. This shift has created many new and unstructured data that is hard to interpret. That’s where AI comes into the picture and helps understand what consumers feel and need.
AI-powered sales performance solutions can identify which customers are most likely to buy a company’s product or service. This model will help people in sales prioritize their customers and improve their productivity and effectiveness.
2. Demand and Supply
Most companies are interested in matching demand and supply. For instance, a steel company may have information about various factors that may influence steel demand. Typically, these demand measures depend on external data to match up with what the company’s supply chains can generate.
AI solutions help analyze these external data and ensure that the company is not producing more than you need to satisfy the demand and not leaving any request unfulfilled.
COVID-19 crisis is unprecedented, and companies have to make sure that they use data that is representative. Historical data allows you to gain insights into upcoming demand patterns and predict possible outcomes.
3. Back-office tasks
Companies can leverage AI-powered cognitive assistants to perform their back-office tasks such as ordering new credit cards, canceling orders, or issuing refunds. If these assistants cannot handle complex tasks, human assistants can perform those tasks. It will ensure that the team members spend their time solving challenging problems and focus on productive activities.
As long as there are structured tasks, Robotic Process Automation can take care of back-office service operations. RPA is particularly useful for automating the claims processes of banks or insurance companies. Enterprise platforms like SAP offer Intelligent RPA that combines automation and artificial intelligence to augment business process automation.
4. Cash-flow forecasting
As revenue systems dry up, cash flow is likely to be a severe concern for smaller businesses. However, several AI solutions can analyze data (only if representative) for cash-flow forecasting.
5. Document and identity verification
AI can identify and verify documents easily. For example, think of a bank that needs to verify customer data for onboarding and compliance. Human agents manually verify documents such as driving licenses or payslips and other relevant records. It is a costly and inefficient process.
AI is used to identify the type of ID document captured, perform face-matching, determine if the ID’s security features are present, and even determine if the person is physically present.
6. Travel and transportation
The transportation industry forms an integral part of a country’s infrastructure. As many employees may have to self-isolate during the COVID-19 crisis, AI solutions can analyze the number of staff needed by a travel company to run its business in these unprecedented times. For example, a company can request AI to provide information on whether they have enough workers to staff a railroad. Here, AI can help identify demand and supply from the laborers’ standpoint.
AI is already being used in the transportation industry to reduce traffic congestion, avoid accidents, improve passenger safety, lower carbon emissions, and reduce overall financial expenses.
From robot-assisted surgeries to safeguarding personal records against cybercrime, Artificial Intelligence is transforming the healthcare industry like never before. The healthcare industry has suffered in terms of medical costs and inefficient processes.
AI-enabled workflow assistants are helping doctors free up 17% of their schedule. Virtual assistants are reducing redundant hospital visits, thereby giving nurses almost 20% of their time back. Also, AI helps pharmaceutical companies research life-saving medicines in a shorter time frame and reduce costs. More importantly, AI is being used to help improve healthcare in underdeveloped nations.
Read more: 7 Major Impacts of Technology in Healthcare
Examples of AI in healthcare:
- PathAI creates AI-powered technology for pathologists to help them analyze tissue samples and diagnose them more accurately.
- Atomwise uses AI and deep learning to improve drug discovery and to speed up the work of chemists.
- Pager is using artificial intelligence to help patients with minor pains, aches, and illnesses.
The financial sector relies on real-time reporting, accuracy, and processing of high volumes of quantitative data, where AI can enhance the processes. The finance industry is rapidly implementing chatbots, automation, algorithmic trading, adaptive intelligence, and machine learning into financial operations. For instance, Robo-advisor, an automated portfolio manager, was one of the biggest financial trends of 2018.
A few examples of how artificial intelligence transforms the financial industry:
- Betterment uses AI to learn about an investor and create a personalized investor profile based on their financial plans.
- Numerai is an AI-powered hedge fund that uses crowdsourced machine learning from many data scientists worldwide.
9. Social Media
With over 3.6 billion active profiles and about $45 billion in annual revenue, social media is invariably in the battle to personalize and provide a better experience for users.
AI can organize massive amounts of data, recognize images, predict shifts in culture, and introduce chatbots. The technology has the potential to make or break the future of the social media industry.
Similarly, machine learning enables social media to identify fake news, hate speeches, and other anti-social activities in real-time.
With the advancement in technologies, AI is improving possibilities taking businesses to the next level. These examples of artificial intelligence prove that artificial intelligence can transform business models if deployed correctly.
Case Study: Development of AI-enabled chatbots and teaching assistants – How Fingent helped a leading university to create an Automated Intelligence-driven ecosystem
Fingent helps you leverage AI to drive the smart reinvention of your business workflows, processes, and technology. If you are looking to develop an intelligent infrastructure for your business or improve the security process or enhance the customer experience, contact us today!
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Manufacturing technologies set to hold the reins in 2021
From big data analytics to advanced robotics to computer vision in warehouses, manufacturing technologies bring unprecedented transformation. Many manufacturers are already leveraging sophisticated technologies for manufacturing such as the internet of things(IoT), 3D printing, Artificial Intelligence, etc., to improve operations’ speed, reduce human intervention, and minimize errors.
As 2021 rapidly approaches, manufacturers will have to move away from Industry 4.0 and embrace Industry 5.0. The latter is all about connecting humans and machines (smart systems). Interestingly, Industry 5.0 may already be here. The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic only accelerates its arrival.
Read more: Digital Transformation in Manufacturing
Here are the top 10 technologies that positively impact the manufacturing industry.
With advances in robotics technology, robots are more likely to become cheaper, smarter, and more efficient. Robots can be used for numerous manufacturing roles and can help automate repetitive tasks, enhance accuracy, reduce errors, and help manufacturers focus on more productive areas.
Benefits of Using Robotics in Manufacturing:
- They improve efficiency right from handling raw material to finished product packing
- You can program robots to work 24/7, which is excellent for continuous production
- Robots and their equipment are highly flexible and can be customized to perform complex jobs
- They are highly cost-effective even for small manufacturing units
Collaborative assembly, painting, and sealing, inspection, welding, drilling, and fastening are a few examples of the jobs done by robots. Today, robots work in several industries, including rubber and plastic processing, semiconductor manufacturing, and research. While they are mainly used in high-volume production, robots make their presence felt in small to medium-sized organizations.
Nanotechnology has grown to a great extent in the last few years. It involves the manipulation of nanoscopic materials and technology. Though its widespread use is relatively new, it will be indispensable to every manufacturing industry soon. Further research and experimental designs suggest that nanotechnology can be highly effective in the manufacturing industry.
Applications of Nanotechnology in Manufacturing:
- Create stable and effective lubricants that are useful in many industrial applications
- Car manufacturing
- Tire manufacturers are using polymer nanocomposites in high-end tires to improve their durability and make them wear resistance
- Nanomachines, though not used widely in manufacturing now, are, for the most part, future-tech
3. 3D Printing
Post its tremendous success in the product design field, 3D printing is set to take the manufacturing world by storm. The 3D printing industry was worth USD 13.7 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 63.46 billion by 2025. Also known as additive manufacturing, 3D Printing is a production technology that is innovative, faster, and agile.
Benefits of Using 3D Printing in Manufacturing:
- Reduces design to production times significantly
- Offers greater flexibility in production
- Reduces manufacturing lead times drastically
- Simplifies production of individual and small-lot products from machine parts to prototypes
- Minimizes waste
- Highly cost-effective
Major car manufacturers use 3D printing to produce gear sticks and safety gloves.
4. The Internet of Things (IoT)
IoT in manufacturing employs a network of sensors to collect essential production data and turn it into valuable insights that throw light into manufacturing operational efficiency using cloud software. This connectivity had brought machines and humans closer together than ever before and led to better communication, faster response times, and greater efficiency.
Benefits of Using IoT in Manufacturing
- Internet of Things (IoT) reduces operational costs and creates new sources of revenue
- Faster and more efficient manufacturing and supply chain operations ensure a shorter time-to-market. For instance, Harley- Davidson leveraged IoT in its manufacturing facility and managed to reduce the time taken to produce a motorbike from 21 hours to six hours.
- IoT facilitates mass customization by providing real-time data essential for forecasting, shop floor scheduling, and routing.
- When paired with wearable devices, IoT allows monitoring workers’ health and risky activities and making workplaces safer.
The ongoing pandemic has expanded the focus on IoT due to its predictive maintenance and remote monitoring capabilities. Social distancing makes it difficult for field service technicians to show up on short notices. IoT-enabled devices allow manufacturers to monitor equipment’s performance from a distance and identify any potential risks even before a malfunction occurs. Additionally, IoT has enabled technicians to understand a problem at hand and come up with solutions even before arriving at the job site so that they can get in and get out faster.
5. Cloud Computing
After making its presence felt in other industries, cloud computing is now causing ripples in manufacturing. From how a plant operates, integrating to supply chains, designing and making products to how your customers use the products, cloud computing is transforming virtually every facet of manufacturing. It is helping manufacturers reduce costs, innovate, and increase competitiveness.
IoT helps improve connectivity within a single plant, while cloud computing improves connectivity across various plants. It allows organizations across the globe to share data within seconds and reduce both costs and production times. The shared data also helps improve the product quality and reliability between plants.
6. Big Data
The manufacturing industry is complicated in terms of the variety and depth of the product. As far as opening new factories in new locations and transferring production to other countries is concerned, companies can leverage big data to tackle it.
As the process of capturing and storing data is changing, new standards in sharing, updating, transferring, searching, querying, visualizing, and information privacy are arising. Think of manufacturing software like MES, ERP, CMMS, manufacturing analytics, etc. When integrated with big data, these can help find patterns and solve any problems.
Benefits of Using Big Data:
- Improve manufacturing
- Ensure better quality assurance
- Customize product design
- Manage supply chain
- Identify any potential risk
Explore our use case: Adding New Dimensions to Equipment Maintenance with IIoT, AR, and Big Data
7. Augmented Reality
In manufacturing, we can use AR to identify unsafe working conditions, measure various changes, and even envision a finished product. Augmented Reality can help a worker view a piece of equipment and see its running temperature, revealing that it is hot and unsafe to touch with bare hands. An employee can know what’s happening around them, like what machinery is breaking down, a co-worker’s location, or even a factory’s restricted sites. Simply put, AR applications can help inexperienced employees to be informed, trained, and protected at all times without wasting significant resources.
AR has made it possible for technicians to provide remote assistance by sending customers AR and VR enabled devices and helping them with basic troubleshooting and repairs during the COVID-19 crisis. Also, more and more customers are open to allowing manufacturers to implement AR with the long-term goal of creating permanent solutions. After all, it helps both the customers and field technicians by reducing the risk of exposure.
5G will have a tremendous impact on the manufacturing industry. It will be more transformational for devices that drive automated industrial processes.
The amazing low-latency and connectivity of 5G will power sensors on industrial machines. It will help generate a lot of data that will open new avenues of cost savings and efficiency when combined with machine learning. Currently, China and South Korea are leveraging 5G this way. Soon the US and the UK are expected to compete with them.
9. Artificial Intelligence(AI)
Manufacturers are already employing automation on the plant floor and in the front office. In the future, AI-powered demand planning and forecasting will continue to develop that will help manufacturers align their supply chain with demand projections to get data that were not possible previously.
A study from IFS shows that 40% of manufacturers plan to implement AI for inventory planning and logistics and 36% for production scheduling and customer relationship management. 60% of the respondents are said to focus on productivity improvements with these investments.
Moving manufacturing operations to the cloud and building and integrating systems using IoT will equally create opportunities and challenges. In an increasingly insecure digital era, there is a pressing need for heightened security.
Manufacturing experts are investing in secure cloud-based ERP like SAP and Odoo to resolve the security challenges. Enterprises-big or small- will soon increase their dependence on cloud-based ERP systems to address security glitches and save costs by paying for usage.
White Paper: What difference does RPA bring to your business? How can you embrace this disruptive technology to remain competitive? Download to learn more!
Technologies for manufacturing will decrease labor costs, improve efficiency, and reduce waste, making future factories cheaper and more environment-friendly. Additionally, improved quality control will ensure superior products that will benefit both the consumers and the manufacturers.
COVID-19 has changed the way the manufacturing industry operates. If your business wants to remain competitive, you will have to embrace manufacturing technologies to shape your company’s future. To know more about the forward-thinking strategies that integrate the latest trends and technologies, please connect with us today.
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Transforming Businesses with RPA- Leading Use Cases in HR and Banking
Various organizations use RPA tools to automate simple to complex tasks and perform them with minimal or no human intervention.
From an IT perspective, you tend to bucket all RPA uses cases into data integration or testing. However, from a business perspective, you need to find out how to get a better time to value and how to overcome obstacles that hinder the business value. Then you can determine use cases that fit into this characterization.
For example, you want to roll out a change in your business process, and need integration into another system. You can do that in two ways:
- either through APIs and get into the IT changed management routine,
- or by using RPA to drive interfaces without an API and get the change rolled out in weeks instead of months.
So, time to value is the calculation that businesses need to do, and check whether the change is worth it.
Suppose you have to perform tasks that are very repetitive in nature – like filling in excel forms, web forms, things like visual basic or word with data which you already have access to, or which you need to aggregate from various systems. Here you can have an RPA bot to pull that data or even push out that data to multiple systems. You won’t have to rekey that information manually. You can always use an RPA bot to do that in an automated fashion. In both these cases, you can write integrations or you can have a system do it for you.
RPA gives you a way to configure that behavior rather than write a code for it. In other words, RPA use cases need to be data-intensive, rule-driven, and repetitive. The drivers almost always tend to be time to value, time to market, and so on.
Now that you’ve understood where to use RPA in your business, let’s have a look at some of the use cases.
RPA Use Cases in HR
According to UiPath, 40% of your HR professionals’ time can be reclaimed using RPA. Robotic Process Automation can be combined with your existing HR systems like SAP or Workday that allows you to create digital process automation with ease. Here are the two key HR areas where automation leads to transformation.
Payroll operations consist of a large number of repetitive, rule-based tasks with activities like data collection, calculations, and scheduling tasks. Payroll workers have to collect data from various departments or units in different formats. The next step is data validation and entering that information into other applications. All these tasks are prone to error.
These activities can be automated using RPA technology since all the data that payroll staff deals with is structured. RPA can make payroll more organized without using expensive software.
The benefits of RPA in payroll are improved accuracy, lower costs due to reduced manual labor and data security. Since the number of menial, time-consuming tasks performed by employees is reduced, they can focus on tasks with higher strategic value.
2. Onboarding and offboarding:
Every time you get a new employee, the candidate’s details have to be uploaded to all systems that you use. They may need a Windows account, access to your time reporting tool, email addresses, IT equipment, and so on. If someone from the HR team manually enters all this data they would be stuck in mundane tasks. Instead, you can have a script doing these repetitive tasks. With RPA, you can automate the entire onboarding procedure since the process is the same for every new employee.
Employee exits too, have to be managed consistently. Manual processing makes these tasks error-prone and may raise auditory concerns. If RPA is implemented in this case, the bot analyzes the incident to find out which tasks need to be executed. It notifies the IT team to terminate access and recover the equipment, terminates the employee from the HCM, revokes system access, generates exit documents, and processes final payments.
RPA Use Cases in Banking
A slow economy and rising customer expectations have caused banks to look for cost optimization methods. The back-end processing activities in the banking sector consist of tasks that are rule-driven, repetitive, labor-intensive, and high in volume. RPA technology can help to automate these processes, thus eliminating the need for human intervention. Here are the two major banking functions that can be automated for improved results.
1. Loan application processing:
The processing of loan applications is a tedious process. For document verification, employees need to manually verify different documents and associated information and then organize all data into a single file. Very often, employees get stuck in this task and spend too much time on it. RPA employed in this procedure can automate the whole process by opening different web portals and validating the information. The bot then initiates an email to the employee for a final decision. Thus, the bot helps to save valuable time and improves the time to client response.
2. Account opening:
The account opening process is cumbersome, time-consuming, and prone to errors. RPA can help speed up this process and make it more accurate. Bots draw out information from forms and enter it into separate host applications. Thus RPA eliminates errors and improves the quality of data in the system.
RPA tools have the potential to help various industries improve efficiency, drive faster operations, and reduce costs than most automation techniques. RPA is gaining popularity as enterprises try to counter competition, increase productivity, and meet customer expectations. Early adopters of RPA have reaped its benefits and its high time that you did too. Get in touch with our experts to learn more about how RPA can simplify your business operations.
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Can Robotic Process Automation Rescue Businesses From An Economic Recession
COVID-19 is panning out to be a historic tragedy both for the human race as well as our economy. While most businesses are stalled due to the economic recession induced by COVID-19, there is a ray of hope. Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is rising up as the savior for many businesses by offering recession-proof operations. RPA might be that one alleviating factor that can keep your business and the economy afloat.
When implemented successfully, RPA can help many sectors experience an undeniable upsurge. How RPA can help businesses get through these unprecedented times? This post takes a look. We will also examine a few automation cases.
Related Reading: Jaw-dropping Facts about Robotic Process Automation
Businesses Can Stay Afloat in These Unprecedented Times
RPA goes beyond allowing businesses to stay afloat. It also helps them respond instantly to drastic changes in demand during such critical situations as COVID-19. It has proven to be an invaluable technology for businesses by ensuring that employees remain productive even if they have to work remotely and from home.
Here are some benefits of RPA.
RPA allows your business to run smoothly despite ever-changing demands while automating manual processes and increasing efficiency. Furthermore, it is helping organizations combat the spread of COVID-19 and is providing customers with timely support as businesses move on to new operating models. For instance, deploying chatbots or automated answering machines in contact centers or help desks can help handle bulk volumes of customer service calls and emails, especially when organizations are forced to function remotely or operate with a limited number of employees.
Less dependency on the individual employee
Though we can’t deny the need for human intervention in most processes, certain tasks need to be accomplished with precision and speed. Here is where RPA becomes useful as a fast and flexible way to replicate employee-driven processes. RPA enables businesses to automate certain critical processes with greater precision and efficiency. And soon, RPA will free businesses from being dependent on the limitations caused by employees’ absence.
Keep up with production
RPA enables organizations to keep up productivity by providing assistance to an overwhelmed customer using attended automation or front office bots. This frees up employees to attend to other critical aspects of the business. RPA can cater to an increase or decrease in the supply chain demand while allowing you to rely on automated back-office activities.
Industries leveraging RPA
Here are a few examples of industries who have successfully leveraged automation: (examples cited by UiPath)
Health of the workforce: Updating all relevant data of sick employees in real-time while keeping track of healthy employees could be painstaking. With RPA, bots can be set up to keep track of hospital employees. This minimizes manual errors and ensures employee safety.
Increasing demand in virus testing: With the increasing demand for virus testing, the wait time for registration also increases. Cleveland Clinic in the United States reduced their patient verification and registration time considerably by deploying an attended robot that collects and prints patient data, thereby reducing hospital backlogs.
Accelerating clinical testing: Filling test reports itself would take about 3 hours per day in the life of a staff nurse. But since Mater Hospital in Dublin automated its process through robots, medical personnel are able to use their precious time taking care of their patients rather than chasing admin tasks.
Banking and financial services
Surge in trading volume: Global markets have seen a trading surge by about 300% daily. This is tremendously increasing the operational burden. Leveraging automation has ensured business continuity while maintaining high levels of customer satisfaction despite the huge spike of activity in areas such as trade allocations and reconciliations.
Acknowledging customer complaints: Acknowledging customer complaints in line with UK regulations has been especially challenging for financial services because of their reduced staff. Automation has allowed the banking and financial services to acknowledge complaints in time in compliance with UK regulatory government requirements.
Helps HR specialists to remain focused on analysis: COVID-19 has overwhelmed the HR department with a large volume of sick leave requests. Automation of two phases of this process has reduced backlogs in processing leave requests while allowing HR specialists to stay focused on their people.
Optimization of the supply chain: COVID-19 has forced factories to shut down leaving their production line idle. RPA allows companies to optimize their supply chains. This has resulted in accurate delivery estimates, optimized vehicle routes, efficient shipment consolidation as well as accountable sourcing.
Reduced manufacturing expenses: Prolonged closures of manufacturing plants have forced manufacturers to cut down their operational costs. RPA automates repetitive and manual tasks thus reducing operational costs.
Related Reading: How Robotic Process Automation Is Revolutionizing Industries?
Weather These Turbulent Times with Robotic Process Automation
Robotic Process Automation will enable businesses to efficiently allocate funds to areas that need greater focus. It can automate qualification ad validation processes, update public health data in real-time, and much more. Educational institutes can also leverage automation to schedule and activate their classes using LMS and eLearning platforms.
Obviously, COVID-19 has brought about changes in the working style of both the consumers and clients. RPA will cater to their needs and help ensure that businesses can stay afloat during these difficult economic times.
How Can You Get Started?
Start small! Start by automating small tasks that will give you the needed confidence and experience in automation solutions. Research and evaluate how far automation is applicable to your IT environment. Talk to experts at Fingent and find out how you can build on the benefits of RPA.
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How is RPA turning into a highly sought-after technology
Robotic Process Automation or RPA is one of the fastest-growing segments in the global enterprise software category. Research analyst Gartner says that the market growth rate of RPA was a whopping 63% in 2019. With more enterprises using this innovative technology, RPA’s market value is set to reach 3 billion USD by 2022, shows a prediction by Statista. Early adopters of the RPA software are already raking in benefits as RPA streamlines workflows, automates tasks and allows human workers to focus on high-value work. RPA software appeals to organizations across the world due to its quick deployment cycle time.
How RPA helps businesses: A quick recap
Robotic Process Automation or RPA refers to software programs or ‘bots’ that are programmed to mimic human actions. An average back-office employee has to carry out lots of repetitive, time-consuming and dreary tasks such as producing reports, filling out forms, updating records and other high-volume transactions that do not require judgment or reasoning. RPA simply offers an easy way to perform these tasks more accurately and quickly.
Since RPA does not require any specialized coding knowledge, businesses have welcomed RPA into their processes with open arms. Let’s now have a look at some jaw-dropping statistics and facts about RPA.
Related Reading: How Robotic Process Automation Is Revolutionizing Industries?
Jaw-dropping statistics and facts about RPA
The statistics behind the widespread use of this technology can provide us valuable insights into how RPA is impacting the world.
- According to the National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM), organizations that implement RPA can reduce costs from 35-65% for onshore process operations and 10-30% in offshore delivery.
- McKinsey and Co. suggest that around 45% of the tasks in a business can be automated.
- In their Annual Global RPA survey, Deloitte found that 53% of the survey respondents had already started their RPA journey. Deloitte predicts that we would witness the worldwide adoption of RPA within the next two years.
- Among those surveyed, the ROI was reported at less than 12 months with an average of 20% full-time equivalent capacity provided by robots.
- The Deloitte RPA survey respondents also reported an improvement in compliance (92%), quality/accuracy(90%), productivity(86%) and a reduction in costs(59%).
- The Institute for Robotic Process Automation claims that RPA software robots cost about one-third of the price of an off-shore employee and one-fifth of the price of an onshore worker.
These compelling figures help us to see how RPA is adding value to organizations looking to operate with maximum efficiency.
- RPA cannot replace humans: One of the biggest misconceptions about RPA is that it will eat up human jobs. RPA works alongside humans to make their lives easier. RPA software carries out jobs that are repetitive and mundane. This can enable us to focus on fruitful endeavors thus improving efficiency.
- RPA will change the nature of outsourcing: RPA has disrupted the outsourcing industry. The increased efficiency and usability that comes with RPA implementation, has threatened traditional BPO relationships. Since RPA can handle more transactions without making mistakes or taking breaks, traditional outsourcing relationships have declined over the last few years. However, if BPOs embrace the benefits of RPA or any other transformative technology they’ll continue to work.
- RPA software implementation is complex: It’s true that RPA has delivered huge benefits to its users. However, many users have also found that the implementation of RPA was quite challenging. Selecting the wrong RPA is one reason that can cause the RPA project to become more complicated than it actually should. If your company doesn’t have an interconnected system that updates cloud or on-premise infrastructure, then RPA implementation can be a big challenge.
- RPA cannot improve a flawed business process: RPA automates processes but does not improve any defects in the existing processes. Due to the hype surrounding RPA, organizations view it as a solution to all their woes. While RPA does help to streamline and modernize processes that are well established, it does nothing to improve a flawed process. So before automating, it’s better to have a clearly defined business process.
- RPA cannot be used to automate all kinds of processes: RPA can be used where high volumes of repetitive transactions based on business rules are carried out. For eg: banking and financial services, insurance, healthcare, pharmaceuticals, manufacturing, travel, logistics, etc. However, if the processes involve reasoning, making decisions, taking different actions according to scenarios, then those processes will not be able to enjoy the full benefits of business automation.
- Future of RPA: RPA has advanced considerably and is the future of IT automation. RPA will be increasingly adopted in various industries such as manufacturing, oil, and gas, retail, etc. Humans will no longer perform data entry and data rekeying jobs. All such jobs would be automated. RPA would evolve to SPA (Smart Process Automation) making business processes smarter. By integrating emerging technologies such as machine learning, AI, big data, with RPA enterprises can promote new levels of productivity and efficiency.
Organizations need not scrap their legacy systems while implementing RPA. The ability of RPA software to integrate legacy systems has helped organizations to accelerate their digital transformation initiatives. They have also unlocked the value associated with past technological investments. As businesses look for new solutions to increase gains, RPA will continue to develop and gain relevance.
Related Reading: How Can Businesses Overcome The Barriers To RPA Adoption?
Have you implemented RPA in your organization? Do you have any insights to share? Do let us know!
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How to Determine If Your Business Process Qualifies for Automation
A large number of businesses are adopting Robotic Process Automation (RPA) today to drive their critical enterprise operations quickly and affordably. While RPA offers a wide array of automation capabilities, you need to first identify which of your business processes are ideal to be automated so that your business enhances operational efficiencies to deliver positive outcomes. For instance, some companies achieve better outcomes when implementing rule-based automation when compared to non-standardized, variable types. Forrester recently reported that RPA Market will reach USD 2.9 billion by 2021, which makes it one of the most sought-after enterprise technologies. The picture is clear: it is crucial for companies to know the different ways to determine which of their business processes need automation.
This post attempts to walk you through the major questions and answers which can help you decide the candidature of a process for Robotic Process Automation:
Criteria to determine if a process is fit for RPA automation
Deciding whether a business process requires RPA implementation or not depends on two criteria:
- Process Fitness
- Automation Complexity
To determine if a process is reasonable enough to offer tangible results by implementing RPA, it is first critical to understand the process type being considered. RPA can automate only clear and well-defined processes. For this, it is first required to know which category the workforce’s tasks belong to:
Repetitive/ Automatable processes
Automatable processes relieve the human workforce from performing repetitive tasks such as clerical and data entry works or data manipulation tasks. Automating such redundant tasks allows human workers to focus on core, value-adding functions.
We can differentiate four types of processes:
- Manual and Non-Repetitive Processes: The steps are performed by humans and are performed every time the process is executed.
- Manual and Repetitive Processes: The steps are performed by the user. A few of these steps are the same every time they are executed.
- Semi-Automated and Repetitive Processes: A few of the steps in these processes are already automated, using Macros, Outlook rules, and so on.
- Automated Processes: These processes are those that have already been automated by technologies other than Robotic Process Automation.
While the above four are somewhat repetitive/ automatable, there is another category: Manual Or Non-Repetitive processes that are not great candidates for RPA. This is because these processes need to stay manual or are non-repetitive due to the high exception rate or factors that cannot be integrated into business logic.
For a process to be automated, it should be rules-based. Human-made rules are applied based on which the system executes the process. Rules can be related to storing, sorting, and manipulating data. The rules-based system is a logical program that uses a predefined logic to interpret data or make decisions. These processes are always easy to use and understand. The rules-based processes have an exception rate which is either low or can be included in the business logic as well.
Standard Input Processes
Standard input processes are those that need to be either electronic/ easily readable or are readable using a particular technology that can be associated with RPA. An example of a standard input process is the OCR. The Optical Character Recognition or OCR algorithms have processes whereby printed or handwritten documents are scanned and analyzed automatically and the text data is converted into editable formats for efficient processing. Using OCR is a much more reliable way to automate tasks such as invoice processing.
Stable processes are processes that have remained the same over some time and no changes are expected in the coming months. These processes are good candidates for automation, provided they meet with other critical criteria as well. The output of these processes is fairly predictable.
It’s also crucial to analyze the complexity of a process to see if it’s fit for automation. The complexity of deciding to automate a process depends on several factors such as the number of applications or systems, the number of times human intervention is required, or even the number of steps required to execute the given task.
Following are some of the factors you need to look at:
- Number Of Screens: RPA in this scenario works by programming the robot to perform functions at the screen level. That is, when the screen changes, the logic is taught. The number of screens is directly proportional to the elements to be captured and configured. For instance, the higher the number of screens, the larger is the number of elements to be captured and configured before process automation.
- Types Of Applications: There are different types of applications. Some can be easily automated such as the Microsoft Office Suite or Java. Some other processes require complex automation effort, such as Mainframe applications.
- Business Logic Scenarios: The complexity in automating a process increases with the increase in the number of decision points within the business logic.
- Types And Number Of Inputs: Standard Inputs are desirable. For instance, an invoice that is a standard input and needs to be configured for each supplier will be impacted by automation. On the other hand, non-standard inputs will have varying complexity grades. Among these, free text is the most complex one.
Using the above-mentioned four factors, the processes can be split into four major categories:
No RPA Processes
These are processes in which change happens frequently. The system environment is volatile and multiple non-digital or manual actions are needed.
Semi-automated processes are fragmented down into multiple steps that are automated. These steps include the ones that need to be manual such as the validations of physical security tokens.
High-Cost RPA Processes
These processes are digital and can be automated. High-cost RPA processes either make use of some complex technologies such as Optical Character Recognition or OCR or require advanced skills in programming.
Zero-Touch Automation Processes
These processes are digital and involve a highly static system and process environment. This makes it easy to be broken into instructions and define simple triggers.
The Stages In RPA Implementation
RPA offers a multitude of ways in which the degree of automation can be increased. There are commonly 6 stages involved in RPA implementation:
- RPA Preparation: Here, the processes are defined, assessed, prioritized, and then the plan is implemented.
- Designing The Solution: Here, each process to be automated is documented ( as “as is” and ”to be”). The architecture is now created and reviewed. This is followed by the preparation of test scenarios and environments. With this, the solution design is now created and documented for each process.
- Building the RPA: In RPA building, the processes are automated, the workflows are tested, and validated. This is followed by the preparation of the UAT.
- Testing the RPA: The UAT is now performed, followed by the debugging of the workflows. The process is now ready to be signed off.
- Stabilizing the RPA: In this phase, initially, the Go-Live is prepared. The process is then moved to production, monitored, and measured. The lessons learned are now documented.
- Constant Improvement Phase: This phase involves the assessment of process automation performance. This is followed by tracking the benefits and managing the changes.
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Utilizing RPA Effectively
Every company planning to use/ already using RPA applies automation to fulfill different operational goals. While businesses at the beginning of their RPA journey want to uncomplicate and rapidly execute their workflows, the veterans in RPA might wish to expand the scope of their existing automation solution and improve their regulatory compliance. Each one wants to leverage technology differently.
Whatever your goal is, Fingent helps businesses in leveraging RPA to deliver high business value, drive significant cost benefits, and enable technology to have a positive impact on your operational activities. Get in touch with us to know how we can realize your automation goals.
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Robotic Process Automation Reflecting The Banking, Insurance & Logistics Industries
Robotic Process Automation is the fastest-growing segment of the global software market. Using this technology, companies can fast-track their digital transformation initiatives. Although RPA is useful in all industries, the biggest adopters of this technology are banks, insurance companies, and logistics. These companies traditionally have numerous legacy systems and choose RPA solutions to enhance or replace manual IT processes. This article discusses how Robotic Process Automation is revolutionizing the banking, insurance, and logistics industries. First, let’s consider what is Robotic Process Automation.
What is Robotic Process Automation?
Robots have fascinated humans for a very long time. From the futuristic robot Maria from the movie Metropolis in 1927 to this day of AI sci-fi, the possibility with robots is a topic of endless discussion. Interestingly, though, this word “robot” in Robotic Process Automation (RPA) does not involve a physical or mechanical robot. Instead, it is a software running on a virtual or physical machine. Aaron Bultman, director of Product at Nintex simplified the expression saying, “RPA is a form of business process automation that allows anyone to define a set of instructions for a robot or ‘bot’ to perform.”
According to Gartner, RPA grew by 63% in 2018 and continues to be one of the fast-growing technologies in many industries! RPA lets companies automate current tasks as if a real person was doing them across systems and applications. It interacts with each system just as a human user would interact. This does not require complex system integration. These functional RPAs are virtual workers and execute rule-based information processes, enhancing efficiency and accuracy. Additionally, it is easy to model and deploy. Let us consider the three specific industries where RPA is most beneficial.
RPA in Banking
The banking industry is completely process-oriented. Every activity is done meticulously to avoid errors in processing. The repetitive nature of the job and the high probability of human error could cause mistakes that might prove very costly. Therefore, in the recent past, leading banking institutions have started using RPA to minimize errors. According to a report by KPMG, RPA will perform almost 75% of the existing offshore jobs, which could save operational cost.
Scalable Benefits of RPA in the Banking Industry
- Mortgage Lending. RPA can enable the banking industry to meet loan quality and cost concerns head-on. Automation of repetitive and time-consuming manual tasks will free up your team to focus on the more important details of loan applications. It speeds up the work, increases revenue. enhances customer experience, reduces operational costs, decreases risk and improves compliance.
- Compliance and Risk Management. It enables the banking industry to automatically integrate and aggregate compliance information into business processes, streamlining the required work while reducing expenses. RPA eliminates the need for manual regulatory monitoring and data collection. It can empower risk management and compliance teams. It enables banking industries to avoid costly fines and damages to reputation. It provides accurate and complete information.
- Customer Service and Support. RPA ensures the longevity and loyalty of your customer relationship and the future of your bank. It helps you engage customers in real-time. It automates customer service activities so the customer is not waiting endlessly. It increases the productivity and efficiency of the team.
Related Reading: Check out these 5 simple hacks on using banking mobile apps safely.
RPA in Insurance
An insurance company receives hundreds of claim requests. Validating each request and handling them is not only a herculean task but also a painstakingly slow manual process. The entire process of the claim takes several days. Because this is a costly and time-consuming process, the company risks losing customers. To prevent further damages, insurance companies are now relying on RPA to help them improve operational excellence and reduce costs.
Scalable Benefits of RPA in the Insurance Industry
- Improves customer service because RPA effectively reduces the turnaround time in resolving customer issues.
- Processes and workflows could be tracked and recorded at each phase. This reduces staff workloads and improves process efficiency.
- Reduces the processing time by 40-80%. This frees up the team to focus on more important activities such as acquiring new clients.
- Reduces errors made during data entry significantly.
- Speeds up and organizes the processing of claims through a systematic underwriting process.
- Based on the demand, intelligent bots can scale up or down, which delivers consistency in service and operational efficiencies.
- Improves audibility and operational risk management due to the accuracy level of RPA.
- The time for the cancellation process could be reduced by one-third.
RPA in Logistics
The logistics industry depends on several processes to facilitate the proper distribution of products, materials, and services from B2B or B2C. The need for an intelligent logistics system increases as the industry along with competition advances every day. Here’s how the RPA can contribute to the logistics industry:
Scalable Benefits of RPA in Logistics.
- Better data management and customer service. Negative experiences and a multitude of errors with logistics providers are causing customers to lose their trust in online shopping. With the benefits of automation and digitalization brought about by RPA, logistics providers no-longer need to rely on huge amounts of paperwork, which was the underlying cause for errors and poor customer service. Logistics companies are enabled to manage real-time monitoring of flow and resources, availability, costs, staffing, transportation, suppliers and so on more efficiently.
- Improved work safety for employees. Through the use of automated machines in unsafe environments and the reduction of repetitive stress in manual tasks, work injury has been dropping steadily with the aid of RPA. This results in savings in terms of injury compensation and loss in reputation. It can also increase productivity, improve employee satisfaction and loyalty, and increase their efficiency.
- Improved efficiency and precision. RPA can help logistics companies easily manage the supply chain processes more efficiently. The anticipatory logistics system helps companies gauge the demand from their customers and adjust their production volume accordingly. It can help in managing and analyzing huge amounts of data within seconds, resulting in fewer human errors, faster deliveries, and fewer errors in delivery.
- Cost reduction. Fewer errors from human decision-making result in cost savings for logistics companies. Also, RPA reduces the need for human workers, which results in fewer paychecks and more profits. Where workers are still needed, it can raise their productivity, margins to a whole new level. It improves customer satisfaction and creates a safer work environment for the workers.
Empower Your Business With RPA
According to Global Market Insights Inc., the RPA market is expected to reach $5 billion by 2024. It is increasing capabilities and improving performance while reducing costs in several industries. Fingent Technologies has been one of the top software companies empowering industries globally with robotic process automation capabilities. Give us a call and let us discuss how we can transform your business with RPA.
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Also known as Intelligent Automation, Robotic Process Automation leads to business success with the robots being able to perform complex tasks. Recent researches have shown that robotic process automation can help in successfully carrying out 87.5 percent of the tasks on time on its own!
According to Forrester Research, 2018, “CIOs should use robotic process automation to digitize and optimize operations, to create and act upon advanced insights, and to drive business technology innovation.”
Institute for Robotic Process Automation and Artificial Intelligence, define RPA as an application of technology that aims to automate repetitive business processes. RPA tools help a company to configure software—a “robot,” so to speak—in order to capture and interpret applications for processing transactions, manipulating data, triggering responses, and communicating with other digital systems.
Everything you need to know about using Robotic Process Automation For Your Business Growth: Tips and Tricks!
Over the next three decades, statistics show that over 76 million baby boomers, rather freshers will retire and only 46 million new workers will be available to replace them! During this time, the demand for labor will rise, making robotic automation a real and viable solution! But this does not indicate that Robotic Process Automation means career extinction!!
Robotic Process Automation – Important Insights and Forecasts!
North America bagged the highest in 2017 for using RPA and the trend is expected to continue over the forecast period. The reason is the increased penetration of automation and process management solutions across the region. The fastest-growing region is expected to be the Asia Pacific. It was valued at USD 45.9 Million in 2017. Automation, which includes machine learning, robots, and AI are the strong sectors for market growth in the Asia Pacific region.
Let’s walk through the major ways in which Robotic Process Automation drives business growth:
Cost Savings By Making Work Robo-Automated!
Implementing Robotic Automation in your business enables 24/7/365 operational functionality at the cost fraction of an individual! Through work process automation, administrative costs are reduced immediately and no additional back-office resources are required. Implementing RPA requires an initial financial investment, but it increases the overall efficiency and productivity. It ensures the reduction of errors as well.
Advanced Analytics Prove Business Process Optimization
Data is King! Recent studies have shown that the use of automation ensures 100% compliance of data-driven regulatory standards (HIPPA, PCI, etc.). Integrating technology within any enterprise infrastructure function enhances the ability to predict future results and optimize business processes.
Through the use of Robotic Process Automation, operational processes can be assessed based on the performance data of your business. By creating a constant data-driven feedback loop, higher levels of efficiency can be measured. This cannot be achieved with human operation.
Improved Performance, Efficiency, Quality and Reliability
Robotic tasks and workflows are efficient and ensure 100% accuracy and availability. Automation eliminates repetitive functions.
RPA helps employees to apply their skills and experience toward core business objectives. This is made possible with automation as repetitive mundane tasks can that drive innovation and growth.
Protection from Injurious Tasks
Also termed Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs), Repetitive Strain Injury occurs from performing the repetitive tasks at high speeds. This results in swelling and cramping. When performed continuously at high intensity for a longer duration, it results in a chronic disorder!
According to the statistics, in 2012, the manufacturing industry had the fourth highest number of MSDs, with 37.4 incidents per 10,000 workers. In such cases, robots are the best suited for completing repetitive tasks, thus saving employees from dangerous work disorders!
Automation Workflow Independence With RPA Integration: Correct Those Brittle Workflows
What can be more charming than the freedom to integrate with any available technology? A prime advantage of RPA integration is it does not require Information Technology (IT) resources.
When funding for large IT projects is a bottleneck for corporations because of its need for programmatic integration with enterprise-wide systems and applications, it forms a major IT development barrier.
For instance, consider the success of Software as a Service (SAAS) solutions such as Salesforce, Zendesk, GoToMeeting, Slack, Workday and so on. These have witnessed tremendous success by their ability to be deployed with very limited technology backbone. Similarly, Robotic Process Automation bypasses the IT sector through its “View Layer” integration approach. The centralized engine it has is trained to communicate and operate with existing applications at the desktop level and not the back office. Thus robotic process automation rules and workflows can be defined by anyone!!
Surface Automation and Document Processing With RPA: Need to Handle Brittle Workflows
RPA is useful when you need to automate the process of adding data to or manipulating data within one of those systems. This is called Surface Automation. RPA provides an effective solution for accessing and working with data housed in those systems.
Additionally, RPA tools are used by businesses for Document Processing. These RPA tools can open a file, parse its contents, and move files.
The concern is since RPA engages with systems on a surface level, the workflows built with RPA are brittle. For instance, If a document’s format changes, the RPA process must change accordingly. So now there is a need to streamline these brittle workflows.
The Future Is Now With Robotic Process Automation!!
The Robotic Process Automation (RPA) market size was valued at USD 357.5 Million in 2017 globally. This value is expected to reach a CAGR of 31.1% over the forecast period.
The ever-mounting demand for Business Process Automation (BPA) through the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and software robots are featured to be the key growth-driving factor for the market.
Integrating RPA in the core business enables a business to streamline IT and business operations.
Also, its ability to mimic the numerous skills of humans, without human intervention while consistently carrying out prescribed functions and scaling up or down to meet the demand is expected to augment the market demand!!
Robotic Process Automation will play a significant role in the automation of Customer Experience and be a key factor in your business in the near future! Consult our experts at Fingent to know how Robotic Process Automation can bring incredible changes to your business.
Related Reading: CTOs Guide – How Robotics and AI Can Improve Customer Experience