Organizations looking to improve their bottom lines have embraced automation for decades. Simple automation has long been bringing benefits to businesses and public sector organizations alike, despite being limited to supporting small tasks and workflows.
As technology has evolved over time, businesses have begun embracing hyperautomation for digital transformation. This type of process automation uses multiple automation tools, like robotic process automation (RPA), artificial intelligence (AI), and machine learning (ML), as well as orchestration tools, like low-code development, business rules, and more, to automate end-to-end processes. By handing off work between digital workers and humans, organizations can see outsized gains in their business processes they never would with a more localized approach.
Hyperautomation has become one of the most important technology trends of today—and it’s important to understand why. Here, we’ll cover the top advantages of hyperautomation.
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Often, organizations fixate on using one single automation tool for a process. They might invest in an RPA solution or AI for a single task. What if you want to accelerate more complex processes? To reach your organization’s hyperautomation potential, you need to use multiple automation technologies.
Hyperautomation allows you to scale your automation efforts to cover complete processes. For instance, you might use AI-driven intelligent document processing (IDP) to classify invoices and extract relevant data from those invoices, then use RPA to input the data into a legacy billing system that lacks an API. Finally, you could use orchestration technology and low-code to ensure humans are kept in the loop when invoices need reconciliation. This allows you to scale your automation efforts across the billing cycle and truly see outsized hyperautomation benefits.
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When people think “automation,” they think of efficiency as the key benefit. If automation means efficiency, hyperautomation means efficiency on an even grander scale.
Consider an example from the insurance industry. Insurance companies have to process claims as a core business function. They could use AI-based IDP to classify incoming forms as claims and extract important data from those claims. Then, they could use business rules to determine if each claim has the right information. An RPA bot could then either enter the claim information into an existing claim processing system or send an automated email requesting more information from the claim sender. This process includes human intervention for reviewing exceptions before sending a claim to a client—a fail-safe to make sure the insurer has the information they need to process claims on time.
The sheer number of forms an insurance company regularly processes makes this process extremely difficult to do manually. A manual claims process would virtually guarantee long wait times for customers. Efficiency gains from combining hyperautomation technologies mean happier customers and a more effective workforce. And the benefits of hyperautomation to insurers go beyond claims processing—the same company could also automate a separate process, for example, by using AI to look for fraudulent claims and note potential red flags on claim forms, then using business rules to assign team members to investigate. In short, there’s a lot of opportunity for hyperautomation to boost efficiency across a variety of processes and use cases.
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Automation frees workers from repetitive tasks. Hyperautomation gives them even greater freedom by shifting the paradigm of how they work. Instead of using simple automation to offload a rote, manual task, you can use digital workers and humans together, working side-by-side to truly unlock potential and ensure that both humans and machines do what they’re best at. This can often lead to increased employee satisfaction.
Take a customer experience example. Customer service departments can be greatly overhauled using the power of hyperautomation. You can use AI-based chatbots to handle straightforward inquiries, such as password resets or basic refunds, while humans handle more nuanced, complex cases that require judgment or discretion. Plus, when support reps no longer have to handle the basic, routine tasks, they can focus on providing a friendly, professional customer experience that increases overall satisfaction.
With the economy tightening and recession clouds looming, organizations increasingly have to rein in operational costs. Human resources often have to waste time on routine tasks that can be offloaded to machines. These labor hours can be better spent elsewhere.
Think about vendor management. Let’s say you have 30+ vendors you work with. Each vendor bills you at different time periods for different amounts and with various invoice types. You could use a combination of artificial intelligence to process their incoming bills, RPA to enter critical information into an application, and low-code to orchestrate sending those bills to the right people for validation and payment. These steps would all have to be performed manually; automating this can save employee hours and save you money in the long run. (Plus, you reduce the chance of an error that could take even longer to correct.)
Beyond the labor cost savings, it’s important to recognize that advanced technologies for hyperautomation, especially those found in a unified platform, allow you to reduce your overall total cost of ownership (TCO) by reducing licensing fees. If you used RPA on one project and AI on another, you’d have to stitch together solutions from multiple vendors. This cuts down on that cost, allowing you to work with one hyperautomation vendor that adapts to each of your process needs.
When you’ve released people from the drudgery of manual, repetitive tasks, they can be open to taking on new responsibilities. Take a supply chain example. Often, supply chain planners and managers know where their bottlenecks are and how they might improve them, but they’re so busy putting out metaphorical fires that they don’t have time to take any action. When they can simply take a step back because they use supply chain automation to offload some of their work to AI or bots, they can focus on developing creative solutions for their organizational issues that pay dividends down the road.
Organizations can truly change the way they operate by using today’s automation technologies. As businesses continue seeing hyperautomation benefits, we can expect even more widespread adoption of automation technologies. It’s critical to build out hyperautomation resources to remain competitive.
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