Robotic process automation (RPA) refers to using artificial intelligence to automate business operations, and many businesses are achieving new levels of productivity and growth with the benefits of RPA.
Adopting RPA doesn’t require a significant investment in money or equipment, to deploy the robots. So, if your organization’s hesitant to jump in despite the fact that RPA is projected to grow 37.6% over the next eight years, you are missing out on all the automation has to offer.
Below, you’ll learn about seven key RPA benefits that can help accelerate your company, and how an RPA consultancy streamlines robot deployment.
The Top 7 Benefits of RPA
Some of the largest benefits of RPA stem from time and labor saved. When you automate labor-intensive, error-prone tasks, like data entry, you can assign those employees to more meaningful work. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
1. Boost Productivity
One of the main advantages of RPA is that it helps you achieve higher levels of productivity. You’re able to keep employees working on critical tasks, leaving the repetitive and clerical tasks to the robots. One commonly-cited study reveals that repetition causes employees to lose concentration and focus, leading to human error.
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Offload tedious, time-consuming tasks to robots, and assign your employees to more important work.
More importantly, by entrusting repetitive tasks to a software platform or an RPA robot, you can improve the robot’s efficiency and operations. For example, instead of verifying IDs personally or compiling the work hours of each employee for payroll purposes, time information can be directly sent into a database for record-keeping.
Similarly, using RPA can help reduce the time needed to complete a repetitive task. A 2020 report from the International Trade Administration reveals that a 1% increase in robot density in the workplace leads to an average total productivity increase of 0.8 percent.
An RPA solution helps you do things faster or complete more tasks in the same amount of time. For example, RPA software can collect data from websites, and is used in a variety of industries such as finance and e-commerce.
2. Improve Customer Service
Customer service is a tricky yet essential aspect of keeping a business profitable. Leveraging relevant data is also a key part of achieving improved customer service. Fortunately, one of the key benefits of robotic process automation is improved collection and management of data, which is one way of improving your customer service.
In 2021, industry analysis revealed that more businesses have started enjoying the benefits of RPA, with about 20% of companies adopting a solution for their back-office needs. You stay updated on your customers’ needs by automating information gathering and management processes.
Many companies have learned the benefits of RPA for help-desk services. Most business websites have automated chatbots that immediately ask visitors if they need any help. Now, you no longer need to keep a customer representative on standby. It even works 24/7, improving accessibility and, consequently, the customer experience.
You can even assign RPA bots to conduct customer satisfaction surveys automatically. They store the responses and prepare reports, all without the need for human intervention.
3. Streamline Your Business Processes
With technology but especially RPA, analysts and specialists have focused on streamlining the business processes. This refers to removing or reworking mundane tasks, as well as those that are repetitive and take too long to complete.
By making sure all processes are efficient and valuable, you cut down on waste—whether it’s process lead time, resources, or man-hours—and boost your bottom line.
Your organization also gets the most from RPA benefits when you automate multi-step and repetitive processes. Back to the timekeeping example, legacy systems still use log books or Bundy clocks. Someone has to collect all this data and record it in a manual or semi-automated fashion, which takes time to accomplish.
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With an automated platform using biometric IDs, verification and timekeeping are recorded as soon as your employees tap their ID cards. The same data is uploaded to the company platform and automatically recorded for payroll and attendance purposes.
4. Improve Organizational Scalability
Over the course of your company’s lifespan, you’re bound to scale up eventually, or you may have to plan for downsizing. Either way, RPA offers the ability to adapt to your changing needs easily.
For example, software-as-a-solution (SaaS) has become ubiquitous in modern business environments. A company can easily change its service plan if they’re subscribed to a cloud-based service.
Imagine having to buy software licenses individually for your terminals or computers during a period of growth, and suddenly experiencing needing to downsize due to financial challenges. This will leave your recent investment underutilized.
With an RPA system in place, you can easily change your service plan to meet your changing needs. By indicating the exact scope of automation solution you need, you avoid wasting resources on devices or tools that don’t actively add value to the organization.
Another RPA benefit is that robots and digital systems can be reprogrammed or repurposed. This is most common in the manufacturing industries, in which an automated line used to create a product can be repurposed to create another. Similarly, multiple lines can be modified to create a single product at a much higher turnover rate.
5. Minimize Downtime
For several industries, one of the benefits of RPA is in the several ways it minimizes downtime. With contemporary RPA, there are a lot of different technologies that make RPA and other similar digital systems easier to fix. From programmable logic controllers to cloud-based software platforms, most modern solutions are divided into subsystems. These subsystems immediately notify the tech or maintenance team where the issue originates.
If you opt for a managed automation solution, such as what we provide, you gain access to experts who’ll monitor and manage your robots. That means rapid technical support, easy customizations, and no worries about having to update your software. Since the solution is cloud-based, most issues can be taken care of remotely as well.
How Modern RPA Prevents Downtime
When you use artificial intelligence and machine learning to proactively protect your processes, you take downtime prevention a step further. Take cyber security, for example. Endpoint detection and response (EDR) is a critical part of any modern cybersecurity strategy. Here are a few of its functions and capabilities:
- It monitors all endpoints, such as the devices of each of your employees.
- The system then “learns” every behavior that counts as normal or typical for your day-to-day operations.
- In the event of detecting any suspicious behavior, such as unusually high traffic or login credentials used on a new device, your IT administrators receive immediate notifications. When needed, they can immediately block access in order to protect your system.
All these functions eliminate the need for an IT staff to go over mountains of login data. There’s no longer any need to monitor network traffic manually. Today, RPA bots are actively watching every endpoint in your system. As such, you enjoy efficiency in your business processes. Your system stays secure as you and your team can focus on other core functions.
6. Gain Access to Accurate Analytics
Businesses must always access actionable information that helps guide their decisions to identify growth opportunities. You can expect faster data processing among the robotic process automation benefits. With this data, you can stay ahead of the competition.
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On an executive level, RPA bots help consolidate information from different departments to give decision-makers a more accurate picture of how the business is doing. RPA use cases could include customer service operations, payroll, human resources, and data management, among many others. As such, you get a good picture of all your business functions’ health.
Examples of RPA and Analytics
For one, modern analytics tools let you track your entire cash flow, from receivables to payables. In some cases, scheduled payments are even included in the analysis to provide a close projection of the upcoming season or year.
The same access to information applies to many industries, across all levels. For small to medium-sized businesses, point-of-sale (POS) systems such as cash registers are now integrated into your business app, updating your sales record with every transaction. This system helps business owners track their business’s performance.
Aside from sales performances, RPA technologies also help in automating processes relating to sales, lead generation, and marketing. For example, you can deploy RPA bots for web crawling and social media listening.
- Web crawling means systematically browsing the entire Internet and indexing content. By sorting this massive amount of data into indexes, finding specific information or keywords becomes much easier. It applies mostly to sorting web pages to create search engine results, which determines the order of how you see content per a search query.
- Social media listening, on the other hand, is used to assess the popularity of a brand, a campaign, or even a topic. For example, bots check how many people talk about the company across social media platforms. Hashtag uses, mentions, post shares, comments—these are all factors considered, and tools rely on bots to get the job done.
7. Drive Down Your Company’s Expenditures
As you conduct your day-to-day business, operational expenses are almost inevitable. Then there are variable added costs for repairs, downtime, and maintenance, which a modern automation system can help reduce.
Before going into the cost benefits of RPA, it’s important to reiterate that adopting this technology requires an investment of time and knowledge. It will require financial preparation, skills training, and realignment to the new processes. Still, when deployed properly, RPA will pay for itself and accelerate your wealth building by cutting down on expenses.
The first, and perhaps most important, of these cost benefits is how automation reduces the risks of errors, which translates to losses regardless of the industry.
A specific example is the global cybersecurity industry. A 2022 World Economic Forum report reveals that 95% of cybersecurity issues can be traced to human error. Suppose an employee lapses in updating or monitoring your firewall, and malware compromises your files. This will inevitably lead to downtime, which translates to a loss in productivity.
More importantly, it could put your company’s reputation at risk, hurting your future prospects for the business.
Similarly, modern RPA platforms let you enjoy a wide range of services without investing in additional equipment. It saves you costs that would otherwise go to hardware and software. You can even save office space and use it for other, potentially profit-generating applications.
Start Enjoying the Benefits of RPA Today
Although the resource requirements appear daunting for most businesses, it’s important to remember you can deploy RPA one step at a time. Start accelerating your digital transformation and improving operational productivity with RPA. You’ll also create a better employee and customer experience that sets you up for success.
The next step is to find the right partner for your business. 1Rivet is a leading RPA solutions provider with experience across different industries, including healthcare, law, and finance. Contact us today, and together, let’s map an RPA strategy that meets your unique business needs.