As the world of the 21st century transitions to a fully digital, cloud-based infrastructure, businesses are constantly facing the need to “do more with less.” While this might sound cliché, it doesn’t make this phrase any less relevant. Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is one way in which companies have been able to improve processes and deliver higher quality results more efficiently and at a lower cost, all while taking full advantage of digital technology.
RPA has been embraced by many sectors, such as medicine, hospitality, retail, & manufacturing. Now, the financial sector is gearing up for a shift in financial management that will see companies digitize and streamline financial processes. McKinsey reports that 80% of business are either considering the implementation of RPA technology for managing their financial processes or are already using it in some capacity.
The use of RPA offers tremendous benefits to businesses of all sizes. It has the ability to automate what would normally be considered tedious, repetitive tasks, resulting in:
- Reduced costs
- Elimination of human error and increased accuracy
- Increased processing speed
- Increased productivity
- Improved quality
- Improved customer service
- Improved regulatory compliance and reporting
- The ability to free up employees and other resources to focus on new initiatives
Consider the financial cost to a company to fix human-made errors that would have been eliminated with RPA. According to Gartner, 70% of accounting work to correct preventable errors before a financial close has to be done manually, at a cost of as much as 25,000 hours and $900,000 per year for a company with 40 full-time accounting employees. In addition, RPA costs about one-third the cost of one offshore employee.
A great example of the use of RPA is a financial institution that provides loans. The loan process can be long and tedious. It can take days to run credit checks and determine whether a borrower is eligible for a loan. RPA makes it possible to implement this loan approval process more quickly and more accurately by using it for back-end tasks that take time to complete and are subject to human error.
Other tasks financial institutions can manage using RPA include:
- Compliance processing
- Data management
- Automating the verification and audit process
- Account management
- Processing new applications
- Making credit decisions
- Producing audit trails
However, a company doesn’t need to be a financial institution to make good use of RPA. Any company with a financial and/or payroll department will be able to reap the benefits. For examples, when it comes to accounts payable, it is common for many businesses to still rely on manual methods to process payments going out to employees and suppliers.
RPA can streamline the accounts payable process to ensure all payments go out on time every time by:
- Automating the accounts payable process
- Tracking duplicate payments
- Processing all payments
- Issuing purchase orders and invoice receipts
- Detecting fraudulent invoices and transactions
In addition, RPA can help companies automate financial tasks like:
- On-boarding suppliers and customers
- Doing price comparisons
- Setting contract terms
- Gathering market intelligence
- Tracking and gathering data from portal queries
- Exception processing for special orders
- Delivery reconciliation
RPA is a solution that is turning heads as it is adopted by more and more companies as a way to automate many back-end financial processes. The key to making the best use of RPA is to identify tasks that are a waste of valuable time and resources and allocate those to the automation process. This frees up financial resources and employees to focus on other initiatives that will help any company remain competitive and ultimately increase its bottom line.
Tangentia with more than 17 years of expertise in global project implementation and change management, is in a unique position to deliver seamless RPA projects through its Agile methodology. Contact us today to start your automation journey.
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