Robotic Process Automation, more often referred to as RPA, refers to the application of technology to the automation of business processes traditionally performed by humans. In layman’s terms, RPA robots—or, alternatively, RPA applications in general—capture data from the interface and use it to complete their designated tasks.
“How is this the future of business?” you might be wondering.
Well, RPA is a huge piece of an even bigger puzzle. Many companies have put into practice Business Process Management, which is also called BPM (We like to use a lot of abbreviations in the business world). The goal of BPM is to use a combination of methods streamline workflow processes in order to maximize a company’s efficiency and productivity; using this in conjunction with RPA technology can drastically improve the overall performance of your business.
What is so special about RPA is what it can do for your business, especially in the real estate and construction industries (a.k.a. industries you do not always think about when you hear “RPA”). Before we dive into the benefits of such technology, though, we should take a look at the RPA process.
So… how does it work?
While I will not delve into the nitty-gritty inner workings of RPA applications, I will explain the basic steps of using RPA’s in your daily business routine.
- Process Tracking: RPA tools collect data from one source and input it into another software or application, so it is important that your information is stored in an organized format.
- Business Process Management (BPM): Contrary to popular belief, RPA is not a replacement for BPM but rather a complement. Before you add RPA to the mix, you need to practice BPM to simplify your processes and boost your efficiency.
- Machine Learning: Most automation software learn to complete their tasks through training; the bot repeats the task several times (and employees intervene to make any necessary corrections) until the process is perfected.
- Intelligent Reasoning: While both machine learning and intelligent reasoning are subsets of artificial intelligence, the latter is much more complex. The software analyzes substantial amounts of data for patterns and refines the performance of the task with each run.
Why is it so great?
Essentially, RPA software mimics activities traditionally done by humans, but it does it much better.
- Increases accuracy: As a result of tiredness, boredom, or almost any other factor, errors often pop up during manual data entry. Using RPA technology to complete tedious tasks eliminates the potential for human error.
- Lowers costs: Not only does RPA save you from the sometimes detrimental costs of human error, but it also gets more done while costing less than a full-time employee.
- Creates better customer experiences: Since employees do not have to spend time finishing tedious tasks, they can focus more on interacting with customers; on top of that, since there are fewer or no errors, customers are more satisfied with your services.
- Improves internal processes: When you use RPA, and even AI in general, it is essential that your business has its processes and procedures clearly defined; an organized workflow allows for more efficient performance.
- Leverages existing IT systems: Many companies worry that implementing RPA will overthrow their entire IT system, but that is not the case. In fact, RPA software has the ability to leverage your current IT system and make it even better.
That is just five benefits out of countless more.
If you’re still not sold on the idea that RPA is going to define the future of business, take a look at a current example: HammerZen, the app that imports statements from The Home Depot into QuickBooks. With the use of HammerZen, countless businesses in the construction and real estate industries (and even more) have been able to rid themselves of the tedious manual data entry process. The app takes a process already in place and does it better than ever before, saving companies time, money, and resources that would have otherwise been thrown away.
The world of business is headed in the direction of automation, and for good reason—so what’s stopping you? Jump on the RPA bandwagon and look towards the future of business!