Which Processes Can Be Automated Using RPA: Top Use Cases
Do you have an RPA program and want to know the best way to scale it? Are you looking to start using RPA? With organizations looking to improve operational efficiency, many leaders are interested in which processes can be automated using RPA or Robotic Process Automation.
According to Gartner, the hyperautomation software market will reach over $600 Billion by 2022. Although adoption rates are increasing, the challenge is scaling due to the licensing costs from traditional RPA vendors. The pay-per-bot model has bottlenecked the ROI of adding more bots to an existing program—and many are looking for a more cost-effective solution.
In this article, we’ll cover the top use cases for RPA that apply to a broad range of industries. By the end, you’ll understand how you can improve your organization with RPA and start scaling using OpenBots.
Table of Contents
Choosing Which Processes Can Be Automated Using RPA
Whether you’re in financial, accounting, or sales, any business has processes that are repetitious and tedious. Think of data entry from an excel spreadsheet that requires manual entries and that are high-volume. Tasks like these not only take time but are also prone to human error.
The benefits of RPA apply to a variety of industries. By using a bot, or digital worker, organizations can automate processes so that employees can focus on high-value tasks, which improves the productivity of an organization.
Any business owner or organization that already has an RPA program is familiar with the big RPA vendors like UiPath and Automation Anywhere. These platforms offer similar functionality but are expensive to operate because they charge licensing for every bot you have in production.
OpenBots is an RPA platform that offers a considerable advantage in that it’s zero per bot licensing, making it much more cost-effective to scale your automation program.
1. Customer Service
Customer service is typically one of the first areas that companies start with RPA.
Manual data entry and retrieval is a considerable component of the day-to-day operations of a customer agent. Multiple procedures are needed for customer requests, and issuing refunds and verifying account details require access to systems across various departments.
For customers, nothing is more off-putting than being on hold for extended periods, being transferred to multiple agents, and having to confirm the same information again and again.
Related case study: Know Your Customer: Data Download
When agents are on a call using attended robotic desktop automation, they can help quickly verify and retrieve data without manually looking it up on a CRM, Excel document, or sales order.
This speed is excellent news for customers in that the agent can access their data quickly and resolve issues with one contact. The RDA component helps remove a layer of frustration and saves time for both parties—all of which improve customer satisfaction rates.
2. Human Resources
Some of the best candidates for RPA are on-boarding and off-boarding. The back-office tasks needed to complete these processes require repetitious and high-volume data management.
With an RPA tool, HR staff can access active directories, assign software licenses, and create roles with the proper permissions with a single sign-on. They can also trigger email chains for account disabling.
Because RPA is not a human, it can run 24/7 with consistent accuracy without getting fatigued, needing to use the restroom, or stopping for a coffee break. It excels at working with data, and the margin of error is much less than a manual process performed by a human worker.
RPA works on rigid logic with a known set of inputs and outputs, which means what you put in is what you get out. The data accuracy of RPA helps prevent payroll issues like an extra zero added to an employee’s salary or granting senior-level permissions to an intern.
Related article: Automation in Hospitality
RPA can also assist HR’s recruitment process by sourcing resumes, screening talent, assessing candidates. Adding this layer helps the HR team focus their efforts and decision-making process on the most viable prospects.
Many organizations think that a bot can directly replace a full-time employee, which isn’t typical in HR. The advantages are not a direct FTE time save but consistent account creation across an organization. This consistency prevents strange accounting issues that could lead to unnecessary revenue loss due to input errors.
3. Sales Activities
Sales activities like entering orders, creating invoices, and managing data are prime tasks for RPA. Sales can use RPA to enter customers into a CRM or access customer data across various enterprise systems like SAP.
Insurance agencies, for example, use process automation for tasks like customer acquisition and form registrations. Appointment scheduling follow-ups and email chains based on triggered events are other everyday tasks.
An RPA tool can set up alerts when new competitors enter the market and monitor the latest RFPs across the web, ensuring sales targets the deals they’re most likely to win.
Eliminating a portion of the manual work for sales helps them prioritize high-quality customer interactions, which is essential for complex sales cycles involving multiple stakeholders.
4. Information Technology
The IT department is a conduit responsible for solving HR, sales, customer service, and other department issues. RPA helps to eliminate friction across IT functions that affect an entire organization.
Many companies, for example, have legacy systems that must be manually accessed by the IT team. Think of banks with old servers that store customer records. Accessing old systems like these is a manual job—making tasks like data migrations, storage, and retrieval prime for RPA.
With APIs, it’s easy to communicate and share information between different programs, which isn’t an option with outdated technology that lacks these capabilities. The challenge is that many enterprises are still using old infrastructure for essential business functions.
RPA provides a workaround by acting as a bridge between old and new systems. Many financial institutions, for example, are decreasing compliance costs with RPA. An RPA bot can do the grunt work of accessing older hardware and integrate it across modern systems.
Using RPA can also help IT lower their MTTR or mean time to restore. The time savings applies to day-to-day tasks like password and account access, user management, and software installations. They’ll also be able to limit license exposure with bots running 24/7 tracking discrepancies and inconsistencies.
Our development team at OpenBots has found that reconciliation is the #1 accounting process that benefits from RPA.
Accounting teams spend most of their time verifying transactions, analyzing data tables, and inputting that information into software like QuickBooks. Like all other tasks that require manual entry, they are prone to human error, are tedious, and take the bulk of an employee’s workday.
Large organizations are data-rich, with a tremendous volume of transactions occurring like invoicing, purchasing, expense reporting, and remitting payments to vendors. Using intelligent document processing to extract data and RPA can help the accounting team manage high-frequency transactions more accurately.
IDP tools like OpenBots Documents use automation and machine learning to read structured and unstructured data and improve accuracy over time. The more input available, the more accurate the results, making them invaluable for organizations with lots of data.
Related Case Study: Point of Sales to SAP
Data is where RPA truly shines, able to analyze large quantitates more accurately than a human. Because of its accuracy, RPA can act as the gatekeeper, regulating which transactions are approved or denied based on pre-determined requirements. This ensures that checks that need to go out are cut on time.
The improved productivity from adopting RPA in accounting is vast—with cost savings of up to 12 full-time employees. This frees up considerable time to focus on an organization’s overall cash flow instead of getting stuck in the weeds with individual receipts and invoices.
Using RPA to Automate a Business Process
If you’re already using RPA, you’re already aware of how expensive it is to add bots to your program with the per-bot licensing model. Using OpenBots is different in that it allows you to and truly scale your efforts by eliminating the licensing costs of traditional RPA vendors.
If you’re new to RPA, you may be wondering which processes are the best to start within your organization. Before launching an RPA program, it’s essential to understand your business processes from end to end.
Every organization is unique, which is why there isn’t a cookie-cutter approach to RPA. By planning your efforts with a thorough discovery process, you’ll uncover your best processes to automate and gain that much sought-after ROI.
Get started with a Discovery Demo.
About Jason Dzamba
Director of Media Relations, Productivity Strategist, and Host of Inside the Bot Podcast, Jason uses a process-driven to help leaders optimize their actions and achieve their most important goals. His creative outlet is painting abstract art and producing music. He lives in Miami, Florida, with his three kids.
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