How Robotic Process Automation (RPA) can boost your business
Would you like to quickly increase productivity whilst also reducing costs?
Sound like an impossible dream?
Read on, as we lift the lid on the exciting world of Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and discover how by harnessing the incredible potential of the processes within your business, we can help you to do just that.
First of all though, let’s clear something up - AI vs RPA.
Most people have heard of Artificial Intelligence (AI), thanks mainly to Hollywood but also because it is used very casually and increasingly frequently in the business media and our day-to-day conversations.
However, RPA and AI are not actually the same thing.
AI has an incredible ability to power a company’s products and customer service by using previously captured and extrapolated data. It takes that data and uses it to create the correct products or services for customers or to treat a customer’s call in the most appropriate way.
As you might imagine, the ‘intelligence’ bit is the truly smart part.
This comes into play when that data changes, as the AI is able to make alterations on the back of the new information instantaneously.
Pretty cool hey?
Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is less about creation or predictions.
It is more focused on working within the CURRENT systems and automating processes to deliver efficiency and accuracy within those boundaries.
This is non-intrusive automation of existing applications and intra application automation, along with an element of business process enhancement.
It is a lot simpler, a lot cleaner, a lot less disruptive and a lot quicker to return investment.
REVOLUTION (AI) V EVOLUTION (RPA)
AI has been touted as the go-to solution for many businesses, but the question should be asked whether many are even truly ready for it.
Much as we love the thought of it, AI has started to detract from the beauty, simplicity and effectiveness of RPA solutions.
The attributes of a business function that is attracted to AI differs massively from one that looks to deliver automation, though they aren’t mutually exclusive;
Artificial Intelligence – attributes of an AI ready business
Cradle to grave data on customer journey from marketing, to consumption through to end of relationship – this is a complex area requiring huge investment in integrating data and the dreaded Data Warehouse.
Once this foundational and very strenuous work is complete, big brained data analysts will then run a number of algorithms against the data to create scenarios and opinions on what creative products or customer actions could be predicted.
Being able to capture results data and refine those products immediately turns the business and all the support processes from an easier slower momentum, to a very pressured and immediate environment.
Ultimately, you are looking at a High Risk/High Reward gamble, relying on a complex set of interdependent programmes.
ROBOTIC PROCESS AUTOMATION – ATTRIBUTES OF A RPA FOCUSED BUSINESS
A RPA focused business looks at the now.
It seeks ways of improving the efficiency, accuracy and overall metrics captured for exceptions.
Rather than the “revolution” required for AI, RPA delivers an ability to “evolve” your business in a low-cost and low-risk way.
No changes are delivered on the current application suite nor are major changes in the business process required – assuming the existing one’s work…
With RPA we’re looking at a Low Risk/High Rewards investment relying on existing systems, people and where possible, processes!
TIME TO “EVOLV”
So now you can spot the difference, let’s look at how RPA works in practice.
Here at The Robot Exchange, we use our RPA technology (code-named ‘’Evolv’’) to fully mimic the way a human currently processes work on a computer.
Imagine watching one of our robots on your laptop, or any virtual machine.
You’d see it as it logs into your email or your applications.
You’d watch fascinated as it moves the mouse and chooses the RIGHT buttons to click.
Every time with 100% accuracy, no guesses.
Sound a little ‘spooky’?
That’s understandable but you’ll soon get over that when you discover how deploying our robots can automate your platforms quickly, driving productivity while reducing costs with ease.
THE ROI OF RPA
Many of our early conversations tend to focus, quite rightly, on the overall return on investment of Robotic Process Automation (RPA) technology.
The calculation is simple enough;
RPA Costs – People Costs Saved = Return on Investment
The “People Saving” aspect is often difficult to both identify, quantify and gain agreement on, especially as in many businesses, senior operational teams will refer to the number of people that worked under them as a reflection of the way they should be rewarded;
More People = More Senior = More Rewards
Without an open and honest conversation about the true costs of humans within the workplace, the total return on investment, as well as the speed that the technology pays back that investment, will always be underplayed.
“I can get half a person to do that process”.
Perhaps, but that still doesn’t mean you SHOULD!
THE HIDDEN COST OF HUMANS IN THE WORKPLACE
We have spent a lot of time investigating the true ‘cost’ of us humble humans.
1) Direct costs identified on P & L for People
- Salary and further package
- NI/PAYE and Pension
- Recruitment, both internal HR and External Recruitment
- Compliance and other training
- Sickness and Holiday Coverage
2) Indirect costs impacting P & L for People - the hidden costs
These items will generally not be considered a cost to employing humans, but they are there.
- Cost per Square Metre of building
- Furniture and IT Hardware
- Management costs
- HR Administration overhead
- Attrition and re-recruitment of roles
- Team meetings and team building events
- Other utilities (Air Conditioning, heating, lighting)
- Tea breaks and other comfort breaks
3) Intangible Benefits that further reduce costs
Rarely considered as part of the equation in relation to ROI for RPA
- Quality and reduction of re-work
- Compliance adherence improvement
- Management Distraction
- Strategy adherence – dilution of your business aims by human decision making*
- Productivity variance l The morning after the night out!
- Increased process efficiency upstream and downstream
*Where humans prioritise “nice” customers rather than higher profit clients or focus on easy, high reward tasks against more complex but higher priority tasks for your company or clients
ROBOTS DO NOT DO THIS AND OF COURSE, THEY WORK 24X7.
The numbers game and British business.
In UK business and indeed across the globe, we still articulate success in terms of the number of people that work for us.
This is counter intuitive for many businesses that focus on manual administration, especially when taking into consideration both the tangible and intangible savings of implementing RPA.
If British business continues to undervalue the total cost of their humans as a counter to the costs of implementation and on-going operations of automation, this will have the impact of a slower than necessary adoption of this critical technology for the UK.
This will result in an unavoidable delay in realising either the cost savings or the increase in business without an increase in human resource costs.
RPA and your business - working with The Robot Exchange
You can take advantage of RPA as a service with reduced upfront capital costs and reduced on-going support and development costs.
We have a number of engagement models that our clients have taken advantage of including;
RPA On-Site delivery – Creating a standalone client owned and supported model. We will partner with the Client’s existing IT resources to hand over all knowledge and technical skill required to continue to provide RPA automation as a business benefit delivering process automations
RPA as a Service – our most successful model has our clients taking advantage of our hosted cloud infrastructure, remote support and remote development. This remote model is both more efficient for the client as well as being more environmentally friendly
Here at The Robot Exchange we are convinced there isn’t a client out there that wouldn’t benefit from delivering RPA as an alternative or additive to on-going IT Capital Investments.
Oh, and don’t worry, we will undertake RPA migration activities as well as on-going operational RPA Process Automations.
THE BENEFITS OF AUTOMATION WITH THE ROBOT EXCHANGE - AS SIMPLE AS A, B, C
Positive impacts on your company’s future
a. Save costs whilst increasing productive hours
b. Proactively manage customers while reducing resource costs
c. Negate the need to invest in expensive new IT Platforms
Quick to develop and deploy
a. Deliver automations in weeks, no more resource draining integration programmes
b. ROI within a year delivering a minimum saving of at least 20%
c. Remote development and testing with little impact on overstretched IT departments
a. ‘’Try before you buy”. Only progress when happy with engagement and efficiencies
b. Spread the cost of your development, avoiding upfront capital investment
c. Per task or % of cost-saving models, whatever makes the project work best for you
By beginning to introduce AI and Machine Learning you can improve and future-proof your business with very little investment.
Also, by engaging with us right now you can take advantage of our wider RoboPortal and RoboApp products designed to enable better customer interaction.