Robotic Process Automation (RPA) has caught the attention of many industries, including banking and other financial institutions. The benefits of RPA are relatively well-known.
With RPA, banks can automate manual processes so they can get the tasks completed quickly with more accuracy and free the human workforce to take up the tasks that require human intelligence.
However, what’s not known is that 50% – 60% of automation initiatives fail. Most of these failures are because of a lack of strategy and planning before implementation.
That’s why process discovery becomes an important step.
Process discovery enables banks to identify processes that would be ready for automation in short term as well as long term. It involves documenting the data related to activities, people, and technology in a process to understand the need and scope of automation better. It is not just the first step to automation, but it is also the most critical step in the transformation journey.
Since the success or failure of RPA is dependent on it, Let’s find out how ‘Process Discover’ can be leveraged to improve automation outcome?
Banks often confuse process discovery with process mining as both involve understanding the existing processes. However, there is a difference. Process mining only collects logs from tools and applications used by the company to gain insights about the process. It does not dig further to understand users interact with the system. It also does not take legacy systems that users use into consideration. Process discovery records every interaction of the user with different systems. It records every activity of the user in the background up to the click-level, giving complete visibility of how users complete various tasks within a process. This helps in identifying a way to automate and improve the process.
The advantage of process discovery is that it captures every detail of the process fully as against relying on the SME and process expert interviews alone. So, there are no gaps or overlooked opportunities in the process. Banks can get an ‘as-is’ view of the process that is validated by the SMEs and used to create a Process Definition Document (PDD). The PDD contains all the relevant information such as the steps in the process, the data flow, SLAs, complexity of the process, etc. that is used as a base to optimize automation. There is no scope for guesswork in process discovery. It helps banks to avoid the common pitfalls in automation, which leads to the successful implementation of this technology. Once it proves to be successful, they can replicate it for other processes too.
Global large organizations spend close to $5 million2 on average annually in RPA. Some even plan to increase the spend on RPA over the next few years. And we are talking about implementation alone. They also incur additional costs in hiring and training employees and on its maintenance. So, despite the advantages it offers, there is a cost involved in implementing RPA.
Hence, to achieve a solid ROI and to improve savings, banks have to be careful with their RPA strategy. With the help of process discovery, they can identify the best processes to automate. They can reduce the overall RPA expenses and maximize their savings. Also, considering that every click and detail of the process is captured in PDD, there is minimal scope for risks or inefficiencies in automation. There is no room for wastage or risks due to which the implementation costs also go down.
Considering that process discovery gives a clear perspective on the existing processes, banks can accurately find out the pain points. It can spot inefficiencies in the existing processes that increase costs and reduce productivity or delay processing times. It can clearly define the existing processes, identify the area for improvement, and find optimal ways to automate and improve the processes. Most importantly, it helps banks to set on an automation journey and gain a competitive advantage over others.
Now that the benefits of process discovery are known, the next logical step would be to incorporate it before implementing RPA.
Many banks prefer to do it in-house. Of course, they have a complete understanding of their processes and would know which ones to automate and what to automate. However, in-depth knowledge of processes will not suffice. Banks also need knowledge about RPA implementation and the right way to do process discovery. Additionally, it is a time-consuming process. It needs complete focus, which might be impossible given the workload on the existing in-house team. If this step is not done right, it could have a cascading effect on the company.
Banks that want to make the most of RPA must partner with the right experts to do it. At Verinite, we help banks in transforming their processes and making them cost-effective and efficient through process discovery and intelligent automation.
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