Understanding Robotic Process Automation: A Guide

Posted on October 3, 2021 How-To Guides

You have no idea how close to the future we are. Trust us. Companies across all industries are doing things that we only thought were possible in movies and books. Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning are making the products we use every day more humanlike. They’re also helping teams across the globe automate most of their workflow processes. In addition to AI and Machine Learning, companies leverage a process known as Robotic Process Automation (RPA).

RPA is revolutionizing the way things get done.

You haven’t heard of RPA before? Well, you’re in luck. Today, we’re going to go over every aspect of RPA. We’ll talk about what it is and what it can do for your business.

Consider this article your complete guide to RPA. When you’re done reading, you may want to forward this along to your other colleagues. Once your team realizes what RPA can do for your production and revenue, you won’t look back.

But, we’re getting ahead of ourselves. There’s a lot of information for us to show you. So, get your pad and pencil ready. It’s time to learn about some robots!

Let’s get going.

What Is Robotic Process Automation?

RPA is a software technology that allows teams of all industries to have software robots at their disposal. What makes these robots so powerful is that they can mimic the way humans interact with other software and systems. Essentially, they can replace humans to perform a large majority of workforce tasks.

What type of tasks, you ask? Well, you might be amazed at how complex their tasks can get. RPA robots can recognize what’s on a computer screen.

They can also hit the correct keystrokes to send a flawless text message, email, or live chat response. Companies can even leverage them to find and extract data or leverage complex workplace systems.

The real value is that RPA robots don’t just replace humans. They do what humans do, better. Robotic process automation robots can perform tasks faster, more consistently, and more accurately than their human counterparts.

The “Robot Dilemma”

Now, We know what you’re thinking. “This sounds a lot like I Am Legend with Will Smith.”  And, while we think that’s an awesome movie, it couldn’t be further from the truth.

There are large groups of people that are terrified of the advancement of AI, Machine Learning, and RPA. They think robots will replace them in the workplace, and they’ll be out of a job. We can tell you from experience that’s not what we’re seeing.

RPA robots are being used to make operations run better. Humans are no longer stuck doing mundane tasks day in and day out.

That stuff’s for the birds! Or…for the robots, we should say.

The resulting hybrid half-robot, half-human workforce frees humans up to do their best work. They can focus on more high-value, complex tasks while the RPA bots do the heavy lifting. It’s a win-win.

Is RPA the Same As AI?

AI and RPA are used a lot in the same sentence. The truth is, they are closely related. And the concepts apply to a lot of the same industries. But, they still are different.

AI is the advancement of computer learning. Think of AI as computers becoming smarter, learning more, and learning more deeply. RPA is the automation of a rather simple process or task via software robots.

They are entirely different concepts, but they do overlap. And that’s when the magic starts to happen.

AI helps RPA robots to complete more complex tasks. With the help of AI, RPA bots can read and understand computer screens. They can take the information they “see” and apply it to other tasks.

AI allows RPA robots to read documents. It doesn’t matter if they’re formatted or unformatted. The AI allows the RPA bots to “think” and synthesize the actual meaning of the document. The most impressive combination of AI and RPA comes from the business world.

Thanks to AI, RPA robots are now able to show management teams opportunities to optimize their businesses. That’s right. Robots can now perform the function of some of the highest-paid COOs.

They can even perform complex cybersecurity functions like vulnerability scans. That’s just one of the many ways that RPAs can help a Security Operations Center (SOC) be more secure.

Using the data gathered by workplace systems, RPA and AI can work together to point out areas where things can be streamlined. They can point out redundancies in your workflow or tasks that they can take over and do themselves. These capabilities give development teams next-level application monitoring.

Together, AI and RPA make some truly amazing tools.

Benefits of RPA

By streamlining workflows and removing process redundancies, RPA makes businesses better. Teams become more profitable, responsive, and flexible. They are better at meeting customer needs and improving employee morale.

It also helps that RPA is non-invasive. It’s not like moving a giant, new piece of equipment into your office or facility. RPA runs on software platforms.

This means companies can implement RPA rapidly with very little interruption to their current workflow. 

RPA works best in facilities where there is legacy IT infrastructure. This is because it’s efficient at automating systems that have no access to APIs, VDIs, or databases.

There are many more things RPA can do for your business. Here’s a quick rundown of some of the other benefits switching to RPA can give you.

Cost Savings

By now, you probably made the connection that RPAs can save you money. This is because, once implemented, RPA gives management teams rapid improvement in their business’ KPIs. In addition, when used with AI, RPA can remove redundancies in your business workflow.

Departments, techniques, and processes that no longer serve the goals of the company can be removed. The result is more time, energy, and financial resources to focus on the task at hand.

Higher Accuracy

One of the enemies of IT processes and mundane workflow tasks is human error. Don’t get us wrong, people are great. And every business is still a people business. 

But certain tasks need to be done the same way, at the same time, every time. RPAs can help you do that.

No more human error. No more worrying if Phil had enough coffee to be awake this morning. You can rely on RPAs to get the job done no matter what.

Greater Resilience

Since RPA is rooted in software applications, it can offer teams great resilience and flexibility. It doesn’t take much time at all to implement RPA in your business.

Once the software robot platform is up and running, you’re good to go. Once you have the RPA bots doing the tasks you want them to do, scaling and growing your business is easy.

RPA can easily adapt to meet peak workloads and spikes in demand. These bots can hit the ground running.

Improved Compliance

Many industries have regulatory compliance laws that govern their data management. One example would be the healthcare industry.

Healthcare workers in all sectors of the industry need to abide by HIPPA regulations. HIPPA governs the way that all healthcare workers handle patient files and patients’ personally identifiable information.

Using RPA robots can help eliminate human error in handling this very sensitive data. Experts have said implementing RPA in their business has “exceeded expectations” when abiding by compliance regulations.

Increased Productivity

RPA robots will increase your team’s productivity. There are two main ways that they can do this.

The first way is by taking mundane tasks off the shoulders of your workforce. By taking over these tasks, RPA bots will ensure they’re completed much faster and with more accuracy than their human counterparts.

Secondly, by RPA bots taking over these mundane tasks, it will free up your human workforce to focus on more complex tasks. The result is that your manpower resources will be pointed toward moving everyone forward toward the same goal.

Happier Employees

One of the amazing byproducts of implementing RPA technology in your business is the effect on employee morale. Most teams have employees that are forced to do tasks they don’t like or don’t challenge them every day.

Once RPA is implemented, the software robots can take on those tasks, which leaves employees with a lighter workload. A workload that’s full of higher-value, more rewarding tasks.

RPA Is For Real

Robotic process automation is here to stay. It’s already helped to transform millions of businesses around the globe and will continue to do so. We are living in the future right now.

If you have any questions regarding RPA or any other web solutions, contact the Net Depot team today. Our expert staff is here to help you in any way we can.

We want to see you succeed and are happy to provide the web security, networking, or cloud storage services that are right for you.

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