How Robotic Process Automation is changing the BPO industry
The automation wave is at its peak in the BPO industry. It’s naive to assume that routine, rule-based tasks will not be replaced by bots, and businesses can do without integrating RPA into their processes. The question is ‘how?’. How can Robotic Process Automation (RPA) shape the future for the BPO sector in a smart way?
The benefits of RPA in BPO are several and it goes beyond the obvious ones of productivity, efficiency, accuracy, cost savings, resource optimization etc. Valued at US$ 1.1 billion in 2019 (Source: Grand View Research), RPA and AI technology is anticipated to be the era’s highest growth drivers. Not surprisingly, the list of RPA companies has been on the rise with each vendor showcasing innovative tech that promotes the power of a virtual workforce.
And while automation is leaving its footprints across sectors, there are some that are leveraging its competitive advantages, a bit more than the others. The impact of automation in the BPO industry has been more pronounced than others considering the efficiency it brings to rule-based repetitive tasks, reduction in operations and resource costs, elimination of manual errors and optimal usage of human resources. Tasks such as data entry and validation, automated formatting, ERP transactions, graphical visualization of data, importing/exporting data etc. have gradually moved to the realm of tasks that RPA bots are carrying out, leaving cognitive and decision making roles in the forte of humans.
Benefits of RPA solutions in BPO sector
When it comes to automating back office processes, RPA technology is going leaps and bounds. But digital transition, especially transforming entire processes to bot-led automation is neither easy nor a quick task. Resistance and scepticism is likely and would take company-wide education and cooperation to realize the benefits of RPA implementation. From witnessing 20x faster processes (agility), to reducing costs per employee by almost 50%, it is not surprising that almost 86% of companies have reported increased efficiency through bot implementation.
In that respect, some of the common business problems that RPA software solutions can help to solve include:
1.Cutting down labor arbitrage challenges
The BPO sector is no stranger to the permanent challenges of labor arbitrage. While the human workforce runs the risk of burnout especially from performing non-cognitive tasks everyday, machine run bots can operate 24/7 without any complaints.
2.Cost-efficiency in operations
Among popular misconceptions on RPA technology a common myth is the monetary cost of RPA implementation. RPA software implementation can be done in days and within specific project budgets; it involves only initial setup cost and maintenance cost, which outruns the benefits it adds in overall cost reduction across operations and human resources.
3.Accuracy and elimination of manual error
RPA bots are programmed to perform rule-based repetitive tasks. That means without human intervention, they can perform ‘n’ number of tasks without fatigue or manual errors. Accuracy and speed is at its best, bots can analyse and extrapolate data and do more, which often brings value and addsto the advantages of using RPA solutions in business.
4.Modernizing solutions to legacy systems
Legacy systems are a bane to the modern digital ecosystem. Time and efficiency are of utmost importance and businesses are constantly on the lookout for smarter, simpler and more intelligent solutions. Adoption of RPA bots into legacy processes have helped BPOs to transition smoothly to a digital world. RPA bots provide security, analysis, compliance and governance, while at the same time keeping things transparent.
5.Streaming revenue generation channels
The BPO industry centers around high productivity and low costs, and the top RPA tools and bots are the best solution to that. A strategic advantage of leveraging outsourced bots is that it performs the core functionalities, without hindrances. This allows room for better engagement of human resources, timely deliverables, and in turn assisting businesses to identify new revenue generation channels or streamlining and getting more out of old ones.
6.Enhanced customer satisfaction
Flexible and scalable, the role of RPA solutions in the call center industry is best known for the value it adds to ensuring customer satisfaction and experience. The robot based workforce ensures accuracy, agility and on-time delivery, in turn helping to add value to customer service experience.
It’s interesting how with passing time, the number of prominent use cases of RPA bots in IT operations, Finance and Healthcare sectors (i.e. the early adopter of RPA bots) have been increasing. While there is the obvious advantage of RPA bot technology in being available and in action 24×7 and conforming to compliance when executing tasks, what’s to be looked out for is how it justifies the often raised question of man-vs-machine and unemployability.
In brief, the BPO sector and RPA technology is intertwined. With current market trends and customer demands, Robotic Process Automation is not just the right solution, it is what businesses need to move-forward and survive.