Digital technology has opened whole new vistas of success, profit, and agility in organizations across the globe. From the smallest startup to the vastest enterprise, Digital Transformation has forever changed the way we do business.
But with the resulting faster pace of change come other challenges, such as managing IT in a more agile, automated, and Evergreen way. IT organizations have to figure out how to deal with:
… and more. If you’re responsible for making IT decisions at your company, you already know about all these challenges, and have probably felt them keenly. But sometimes it is hard to see the forest for the trees and figure out how to do more, at a faster pace, with the same (or in some cases) even less resources. Throwing more people and more money at the problem will get you only so far.
You need to automate. Enter robotic processing automation.
Robotic Processing Automation, or RPA can be defined as
“a type of software that mimics the activity of a human being in carrying out a task within a process. It can do repetitive stuff more quickly, accurately, and tirelessly than humans, freeing them to do other tasks requiring human strengths such as emotional intelligence, reasoning, judgment, and interaction with the customer”
, according to an interview with London School of Economics professor Leslie Willcocks conducted by management consulting giant McKinsey.
Boiled down, RPA is a process in which robotic programs are programmed to act like humans, making decisions, sorting and cataloging, and carrying out less-interesting or -fulfilling tasks. This is not as refined as cognitive automation, points out Willcocks, in that RPA does not impinge upon tasks that would be engaging to humans or require high-level attention. Rather, it runs routines that are human-like but don’t really require human oversight.
In the context of IT, that means managing app integration, new updates and rollouts, handling IT tickets, and giving end users the capability to manage many of their own IT needs. This, as you can imagine, brings some major benefits.
So if you invest in RPA, what can you expect? Here are just a few perks:
The best news of all is that these benefits can accrue to almost any enterprise in any industry.
Who Is a Candidate for RPA?
Nearly anyone can benefit from robotic automation. Consider a company that processes a lot of applications, for instance, such as a bank. Many of these applications require filling in field after field, often in duplicate or triplicate, which is an exhausting task rife with the potential for error when it’s carried out by humans. However, robots can handle it with ease.
Managing accounts receivable also comes to mind. Entering a paid invoice often requires lots of ancillary tasks, such as reconciling spreadsheets or balancing accounts. Robots can take that initial input and distribute the information to all secondary tasks, saving a person from doing them.
Also note that agile development is appropriate for small and medium-sized businesses as well as large enterprises. Even if you only have 20 computers on your network, RPA will reduce the time your IT director has to spend servicing them, updating networks and security measures, and answering the individual requests of each employee. That’s a boon for a company of any size, up to thousands or hundreds of thousands, spread across the globe.
At the end of the day, robotic processing automation is a fairly simple way to save time and money, attract talent and reduce the number of headaches faced in your organization’s daily life. Besides which, it’s not difficult to integrate into your existing processes. Whether you’re facing down the barrel of a huge rollout or simply want to streamline the everyday, it’s time to consider RPA today.