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January 20, 2021

An automated world

Opinion

January 20, 2021

Robotic Automation Process is ranked in one the top 10 highest paying jobs in 2021 and top 10 technologies to learn.

Since 2016, RPA has been rapidly growing and is expected to rise even higher by the end of 2021. North America holds the highest market while the Asia Pacific is expected to experience the fastest growth between 2018 and 2026. This is due to the increasing demand for technology in healthcare, tourism, and the logistics sector in the region.

Having said that, there still is a need to understand this technology. The word ‘automation’ was coined in the 1950s but has recently started gaining popularity. To understand the Robotic Automation Process, one must break it down into three parts – robotic, automation, and process.

Robotics are entities that mimic human actions using a sequence of steps which are known as processes to complete a simple or complex task, finally leading to ‘automation’. Automation is any process done by a robot without any human intervention.

Traditional automation is different from RPA in that it involves scheduling applications programming interface and integrated tools to unite different systems while RPA mimics the actions of a user at the user interface level.

RPA is software with artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities to handle a high volume, repetitive tasks that were previously being performed by humans. It can be achieved by having an AI-infused RPA tool watching what you do repetitively. RPA can automate more than 40 percent of daily tasks, thus promoting innovation and creativity. For example, calculations, maintaining work files, addressing queries, and performing business transactions.

For RPA to work, one must first identify what type of automation is required, make plans and decisions, design, and develop an automation workflow. Deployment and testing are also vital to make sure it is effective and has no existing bugs. The product must be updated frequently and maintained to create smooth operations.

Given our current issues that have been caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, there has been an increase in RPA in the market. In 2021, based on economic concernment, most companies have decided to scale back on their financial expenditure and have reduced their number of employees, and are looking to use RPA.

RPA is already being implemented in most countries – for example, in Pakistan’s telecom industry. EFU Life is the first IBM RPA-enabled insurance company in Pakistan. Since it is supported by high-frequency manual, repetitive, rules-based processes, which are critical for appropriate service delivery, companies have benefited.

RPA is perfect for telecommunications as the industry undergoes rapid growth and development on a global scale

To effectively adopt RPA, get a clear vision of the journey you want to take and plan it out well. Be realistic and do not expect 100 percent automation on operational complexities. Trust the technology, by having a developing team that knows how to do the right process design, with the right experience to ensure the robot is managing the unexpected tasks in the right way so that you do not lose trust in credibility with your operations. You also need to have value capture. Make sure you have never-ending implementations and costs.

RPA ensures compliance, increases security, enhances customer experience, and enables AI technology. RPA has improved employee efficiency by 36 percent, reduced manual error by 33 percent, and enhanced the capacity for high volume transactions by 35 percent.

More advantages of RPA include reduced operational risks, timekeeping, and 24/7 business continuity which leads to high-quality production at a high speed. Most domestic businesses use RPA to reduce production costs. RPA offers a high return on investments.

One of the benefits of RPA is that it eliminates costly manual functions by automatically acquiring, integrating, and delivering data across the supply chain while identifying the latest patterns and trends that can improve operations and logistics management. RPA also makes sure that there is less room for human errors, thereby reducing the number of complaints from customers. It uses chatbots, voice assistance devices and automated call centers, to mention a few, to implement this task. More and more customer service organizations are turning to RPA to make agents more effective and to increase their consumer market.

It is also used by enterprises to shortlist resumes, administer offer letters, review company analysis, manage expenses, manage employee data, track attendance, manage payroll etc. RPA is focused on allowing customer service employees delegate their duties to robots that concentrate on efficiency and high speed while giving these employees a chance to work on other projects.

The software can be implemented in credit card processing, account closure process and customer services like balance query, improving efficiencies, and reducing personnel costs. Therefore, most financial institutes are using it to provide the best customer experience. In conclusion, RPA will continue experiencing massive growth due to the increasing adoption worldwide. It is almost an infinite market and is relevant to all industries, both small and large. This has been brought about by first, COVID-19 disruption, which has caused a tremendous acceleration of RPA adoption going forward. Digital processes will all soon need to be automated, to keep up with currents trends. There will be more opportunities coming forward to RPA soon.

According to Gartner, 85 percent of big organizations will have deployed some form of RPA by the year 2022. The pandemic has accelerated the need for a broader and more agile implementation of automation in all aspects and functions of an organization as an ultimate priority. Although UiPath is the leader in RPA, it will have to explore more technologies and embrace hyper-automation platforms. Also, the need for less manual labor and reduced production costs will force many enterprises to opt for automation especially during this pandemic season. This will also reduce contamination or the spread of the virus.

The writer is Director of the Centre for Information and Communication Technology at IBA.

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @imranbatada