By JOLT Experts on Jun 19, 2019 3:10:25 PM
Robots have been a staple in science fiction since the mid-20th century. From the toy wind up robots in the 1960s to the programmable multi-functional robots for industry use of today, robots have always been viewed as a physical man-made machine to replicate human movement and interaction, such as the robots used in the automotive manufacturing industry. Robots have mostly been used in industry as large machines that are able to perform repetitive physical tasks, such as moving large objects. This is no longer the case; with Robotic Process Automation (RPA) you can integrate robots into any industry. Now, you are probably thinking to yourself what is RPA and how can it be applicable for my business, we will answer those questions and demystify RPA for you with the following 5 things that you need to know about RPA.
5 things to help demystify RPA:
1. What is RPA?
The robots that we are talking about are not physical machine robots but rather it is a software robot that is maintained and running only on a computer or virtual machine. RPA is the use of various software and technology to create a robot, also referred to as a bot, that can perform actions on a computer for industry use. The main objective for RPA is to automate tasks that a human is doing on the computer, to save time and money for the company that is integrating bots into their operations. The bots are highly configurable and can complete many tasks that we will talk about later in the article.
2. Will RPA take your job?
No, RPA is not coming to take your job, but rather it is being implemented to bring value to both the employees and the companies that are implementing it. The main objective behind RPA is not to replace humans with robots, but rather leveraging the software robots to complement human workers in tasks that are repetitive, time-consuming and low value. With RPA we want to make it easier for the employee by taking away their mundane computer tasks and giving them to a bot that can perform them at a much faster pace with more accuracy. This allows employees to have more time to work on more important tasks and gives them more freedom in their job. This also aids the company in saving money by having the bot perform tasks with higher accuracy and allows employees of the company to be more productive helping the company move forward with the projects they are working on. In short, RPA is aimed at taking the robot out of the human. So humans don't have to be robots.
3. What tasks can be automated with RPA?
With RPA the main tasks and processes we want to automate are the tasks on a computer that is highly repetitive, rule-based, and have well-structured data. Tasks with those features are easily automated and bring lots of value when automated because the bot is able to handle the whole process from end to end. These tasks range from extracting data to processing transactions. The bots mainly use the User Interfaces (UI) and applications to perform the needed tasks. The RPA technology is relatively new and is becoming more and more advanced by the day with the implementation of emerging technologies such as computer vision and natural language processing. As the RPA technology and software become more advanced the bots will be able to perform a greater variety of tasks.
4. How will RPA help your industry or company?
Computers are a great tool that has been adopted widely worldwide in both commercial and consumer use. That being said, RPA can be implemented in almost any industry, because almost every industry uses computers to perform tasks. While some industries will have more of a need for RPA than others, it will still be able to have an impact in most. We want RPA to spread widely across industries to aid companies in their monotonous computer-based tasks. With RPA it is not about how a bot help in your industry or company but more about where and how is the best way that a bot can be implemented for the best outcome.
5. How is RPA different from AI?
As part of a wide array of emerging technologies, RPA is commonly mistaken as an Artificial Intelligence or Machine Learning technology, and while that can be an accurate depiction now that some leading RPA platforms have managed to infused RPA with AI capabilities, Ie. Computer Vision/OCR, NLP, Voice Recognition, etc. RPA itself is considered a software robot that mimics human actions based on logic set by human developers, whereas AI acts as simulation of human intelligence [Doing vs Thinking].
With advancements in Intelligent Automation, organizations now can leverage RPA and AI to automate complex end-to-end processes with minimal human intervention, eliminating exception handling and therefore cut costs drastically.
The decision to implement either RPA or AI (or both) will depend on the specific use case. Beginner organizations typically start with just RPA by capturing the “low hanging fruit” to proof the concept and deliver ROI in a short time frame, using RPA as a stepping stone towards intelligent automation and advance in their digital transformation journey,
Overall, RPA is a newer technology that is becoming more and more advanced as time passes, with the use of RPA in your company it will allow for easier application of the technology to come in the future. It is being implemented in various industries to help companies be more efficient, productive and successful. For RPA it is not about if it will be implemented everywhere but when it will be. With JOLT Advantage Group we can help you implement RPA for all of your business needs, and help you move forward with your digital transformation.
Contact us to learn more on how you and your organization can benefit from RPA, and how to get started with a PoC (Proof of concept) and Pilot program. You can sign up for our 'Take home a Robot' free RPA workshop, where we will be hosting hands-on Bot building sessions in large cities across the US.