The next generation of Back Office process improvement has now arrived, in the form of proven technology that automates any rules-based process and complements traditional systems and tools but firmly puts the power of automation technology into the hands of business operations.
“Automation looms as the right solution for the majority of rules-driven processes that are being outsourced today.” – James Slaby independent HfS research study published 24/10/12.
Now, business operations can automate many business processes quickly and cheaply, without reliance on complicated and lengthy IT programmes. In addition, the economics are hugely compelling. While an onshore FTE costing $80K can be replaced by an offshore FTE for $30K, a robot can perform the same function for $15K or less – without the drawbacks of managing and training offshore labour. A typical rules based process can be 70%-80% automated which means companies can now operate onshore at a cost point lower than offshore. Robots are 100% accurate and the process exceptions – those that require judgement or a skilled eye – can be referred to experienced staff that benefit from only dealing with the more interesting work. The business operation can maintain absolute control of the throughput without the need to manage an offshore operation, or indeed an outsource partner.
The technology is best suited for processes that are highly rules driven, and the requirement for which is too tactical or short-lived to justify development by IT.
This automation takes just weeks to implement, and just a few months to pay-back. It can be almost instantly scaled up or shut down as required. It doesn’t replace existing systems, it’s non-invasive, processes don’t need to be re-engineered and it works with any system on just about any platform. Finally, you pay as you go, only committing to paying for software once your robots are in production.
While this agile technology is not a panacea to replace more traditional IT programmes, nor does it replace human qualities such as judgement, it does provide a valuable resource to organisations and significantly reduces the cost of rules based processing. The key to successful exploitation across shared-service or process centres is to identify the right processes to automate and use skilled, experienced resources to implement it right, first time.
In summary Robotic Automation will:
- rapidly deliver the next wave of productivity improvement to your business processing operations
- Supply processing capacity to meet demand that is spiky or cyclical in nature, such as a high volume of applications for a product at a certain time of year, or to support a product launch
- Build a bridgehead to automate work for a short to medium term requirement, for example prior to deployment of a strategic application, or for processing work with a finite duration
- Respond quickly to fiscal or regulatory change that demands additional manual processing