Intelligent Automation is being embraced by many organizations to boost revenues, increase efficiency, and improve customer experiences.
As an evolution of Robotic Process Automation (RPA), Intelligent Automation utilizes a Composite AI approach to leverage multiple techniques, such as machine learning (ML), computer vision (CV), and natural language processing (NLP) to handle complex processes and support business decision making.
Intelligent Automation has the potential to revolutionize the workplace, not only by freeing up time human workers dedicate to repetitive tasks but also helping companies to set new strategies and to develop new innovative products and services.
Unfortunately, this potential is still largely untapped, as most companies have yet to fully embrace it. Many opportunities are still left on the table.
Some of the best candidates for automation are business processes dealing with structured data (both digital and non-digital) with clearly defined stages; processes with seasonal spikes that cannot be easily met by a manual workforce (such as policy renewals, premium adjustments, claims payments); processes with strict Service Level Agreements (SLAs), requiring fast turnaround times (like transaction registration, order fulfilment, etc.).
Some notable use case applications also include:
- Contract management: Intelligent automation can help to simplify all the steps needed to draft, send, redline, and execute contracts.
- Sales processes: Here automation can provide first level assistance to prospects by providing direct answers to FAQs.
- Quality and security compliance procedures: Intelligent automation can be leveraged to collect and pre-process data to perform initial assessments before involving a human analyst.
- Finance: It can be used to streamline the procure-to-pay (P2P) process.
- HR: Many tasks in the Hire-To-Retire (H2R) process can be automated.
- Customer service: Many contact center tasks can be automated, as virtual agents can handle routine tasks, freeing up human agents to handle more complex customer inquiries, with great benefits for the customer experience.
Intelligent Automation has the potential to change the architecture of work by breaking it into smaller tasks and making it more events driven.
In the future, fewer tasks will need to be handled manually, leaving workers with more time to focus on digital learning and knowledge work, including learning how to proactively develop solutions using low-code platforms and tools.
The use of intelligent automation can boost the efficiency and effectiveness of business processes, enabling companies to meet higher standards of both customer and employee satisfaction.
However, as organizations increasingly adopt intelligent automation technologies, they need to be aware of the potential risks and hazards to avoid.
One of the main pitfalls is ignoring the importance of change management.
This could result in long-term issues if organizations overlook the importance of having their people aligned with their overall goals.
Additionally, employees may push back when automating processes that were previously carried out by a team of people. It is important to understand and take into account the concern and perceived lack of control when processes are suddenly automated.
Lastly, in order for any automation project to be successful it necessary to set clear goals in advance and to establish key metrics to evaluate the impact of the initiative and to measure the ROI.
Scaling intelligent automation is one of the biggest challenges for organizations: therefore, it is crucial for companies to be clear about the strategic intent behind their initiatives.
Success often depends on the ability of the organization to put “people’s needs” first: this means introducing new technologies in a way that is helpful and involves minimal disruption, and addressing real issues related to skills, roles and job content.
In other worlds, companies should not approach the problem like a race to be the first to introduce the latest technology and neither as a way to substitute people in managing operations.
Intelligent Automation can rather realize its full potential when it implemented as a means to support and augment human employees.
This allows a correct balance to be found between automation and manual control, leading to the best results when determining the success of a project.
The right approach
If organizations take the right approach, employees can also positively embrace automation and the opportunities it creates, rather than resist it.
In fact, automation can free up time on repetitive work, helping employees to focus on high-priority tasks and allowing them to move from administrative management to higher-value contributions.
Forward thinking organizations will try to shift workers into new roles as the current ones get progressively automated; this way employees can learn about new technologies and how they can be leverage them.
With this vision, upskilling programs, both internal and external, will be more and more a differentiating factor for companies to attract and retain the best talents.
For more information on how Altilia can help you gain the full benefits of Intelligent Automation, contact us here.