Many executives are considering adoption of digital labor, also known as robotic process automation or RPA. RPA is a catalyst for business transformation, and it will touch every aspect of the business, including:
- The business’s ability to meet its goals
- The customer experience when interacting with the brand
- Employee satisfaction and engagement
Here’s how digital labor is creating the future of work.
By reducing the cost of routine procedures and eliminating errors, RPA contributes directly to increased profitability. The speed and accuracy of automated processing helps ensure accuracy, improving compliance in regulated industries such as life sciences. Period end closing and annual financial audits move faster, since once the rules are validated, audits only need to look at any exceptions. The company eliminates the cost and hassle of outsourcing and offshoring business processes while improving accuracy and speed. Contrary to some fears, automating business processes will make the company a more desirable place to work, since potential employees will know they are empowered to focus on exceptions and strategy rather than being bogged down in boring and mundane details.
Customers will have a more positive experience when they work with companies that employ RPA. They can be assured that they will receive timely and accurate documents such as acknowledgements and invoices. It will be a simple matter to make appointments for services, and in fact, robots may make appointments for them to simplify scheduling routine preventive maintenance or even repairs or replenishing consumable supplies. Information such as available inventory or scheduled delivery dates will always be accessible and up-to-date. When the customer’s routine needs are handled quickly and accurately, they have a more favorable impression of the company and the brand, which may result in more sales. As businesses move ever closer toward mass customization and servicing the “segment of one”, RPA can help their customers to configure exactly the product or services they need in real time, knowing the price they will pay and the lead time immediately. Customers will find that companies using RPA to transform their business processes are easier to do business with in general, making them more desirable business partners.
While employees may initially be apprehensive that they will be replaced by robots, they soon learn to appreciate the transformation of work that RPA enables. Rather than spend their days processing routine transactions or executing repetitive process steps, employees now have the time to focus on handling exceptions that require a personal touch. In addition, their time is freed up to enable them to focus on more interesting or strategic activities, which makes their day-to-day jobs more enjoyable. Employees may need or want to improve their skills in their fields of expertise as well as in process automation so they can magnify their organizational impact from transactional to transformational. Employers that use RPA to eliminate routine drudgery will soon find that they have become more desirable places to work, and employees will exhibit greater engagement and more enthusiasm for their jobs.
Robotic Process Automation has the power and potential to completely transform the business environment by creating a new vision of work where employees, companies and customers work together in harmony for the benefit of all.