Robotic Process Automation is a global technological marvel that has streamlined business operations for years. Companies worldwide should be engaged in healthy competition to excel in implementing solutions that fulfill the aspirations of countless entrepreneurs: “to earn more while spending less.”

Paradoxically, investment apprehension looms large even with concrete numbers, meticulous calculations, and in-depth analyses.

In business, process automation serves as an accelerator, elevating operational efficiency to new heights. In today’s landscape, automating an extensive array of tasks is not only entirely feasible but also constantly evolving, thanks to the rapid pace of technological progress. In essence, digital robots can now handle nearly every conceivable activity on our behalf. This encompasses the routine and repetitive tasks traditionally associated with paperwork and the intricacies of multifaceted business processes that span across various departments within a company, often involving numerous employees.

So, where does automation fit into this equation? Should it be a source of apprehension for businesses worldwide, or is it reserved exclusively for large corporations, with only a handful of entities having the means to afford it?

In this context, let’s delve into and debunk the five most prevalent automation myths, transcending geographical boundaries and addressing the concerns of businesses on a global scale.

Automation Myth 1: Process Automation is Always the Best Solution

That’s right — it’s an automation myth. Or, at least, that’s what software architects or IT directors would argue. Their perspective often arises from a passion for technology and product development.

Partially, this is accurate — virtually any IT problem can find a solution by creating a meticulously tailored application. However, constructing such software almost always incurs significant costs and demands a substantial time investment — measured in months or even years. Throughout this duration, assumptions shift, processes evolve, and the developed application might become obsolete even before deployment.

In contrast, automation can yield initial results within a matter of weeks. Introducing a single robotic team member to analyze orders from emails, cross-reference our price database, and generate graphical proposals typically necessitates not the development of an intricate application but just a few days of work from an automation expert.

If you ever come across claims that superior alternatives to automation exist, ponder whether implementing them is a viable option. Reflect on whether ‘better’ indeed translates to a tangible return on investment within your means.

It’s also worth noting that many IT companies in the market treat automation services as mere add-ons to their offerings, often delivering mediocre results. Customers who engage with such services are frequently left with unmet expectations, further solidifying that automation has brought them little significant value.

On the other hand, there exist professional software companies—providers of leading automation tools, like UiPath—who not only grasp the actual business needs but also employ quantifiable criteria to choose defensible solutions. In this era of evolving AI, almost everything can be automated, even though it might not always be a cost-effective choice.

So, is automation the optimal solution in every scenario? No. However, it often stands as the sole viable option we can implement before current challenges metamorphose into new ones.

automation myths - process automation is the best solution

Flobotics Case Study:

When Docplanner wanted to swiftly test the market viability of its services in new regions, it faced two options:

  • Develop a dedicated application from scratch
  • Automate communication between the existing systems in the new markets and their platform.

Opting for the latter facilitated rapid testing and enabled the immediate creation of solutions that substituted the intended approach. Find out more about what we’ve done for process optimization in DocPlanner.

Automation Myth 2: Only Simple Processes can be Automated

With the market teeming with self-proclaimed automation experts, it can sometimes give the impression that only processes of low complexity are suitable.

This misconception arises because many inexperienced consultants employ basic tools and need more experience in analysis or automation.

However, the truth is that even highly intricate and multi-threaded structures can be modified, provided one possesses the requisite knowledge and dedication. Naturally, tackling complex subjects demands more investment of effort and work, but the results can yield highly measurable business benefits. In the contemporary landscape, a significant challenge involves eliminating bottlenecks—where automation can work wonders.

automation myths - only simple processes can be automated

Flobotics Case Study:

Paramount Residential Mortgage Group, a leading mortgage company in California, sought our assistance in automating an exceedingly intricate process involving mortgage application processing. This process boasts considerable complexity: numerous company employees are involved, multiple bottlenecks exist, errors are frequent, and the process itself can span weeks.

Our approach encompassed mapping out the entire process, breaking it into segments, and sequentially automating each component. The outcome was impressive—our efforts led to cost savings of $2 million annually for the company, achieving a remarkable 600% return on investment within the initial year of operation.

Automation Myth 3: Robots Will Take our Jobs Away!

The exact predictions accompanied every technological revolution. When sewing machines were invented, concerns arose that 99 percent of sewists would lose their jobs. Yet, what transpired was quite different: suddenly, new clothes became affordable to many, and demand surged to the extent that employment within the industry tripled. Similarly, with the advent of Excel replacing paper documents, accounting firms didn’t succumb either. Instead, they acquired a potent tool for providing a far-reaching spectrum of services.

Automation companies underscore that their impact is most rewarding when clients experience relief and happiness from shedding mundane and repetitive tasks. Through automation, customers unlock a new level of efficiency—enabling them to channel their energies toward more creative or interactive endeavors while also gaining additional time for breaks and rest. Automation liberates them from routine and stress, fostering improved well-being and job satisfaction.

automation myths - robots take our jobs

Flobotics Case Study:

At TaxRise, a tax company based in California, approximately 60% of the five-person sales team’s time was consumed by paperwork: data transcription, document management, and frequent shifts between sales and administrative tasks.

The bot we developed assumed some of the team’s responsibilities.

However, the outcome defied expectations; no job losses occurred. Each salesperson managed to attract more than twice the number of customers for the company compared to before. Their efficiency skyrocketed, so the team expanded to nine members within a few months. Today, two years later, the company stands as a category leader.

Automation Myth 4: Automation is Excessively Costly

If your company employs over 50 people, chances are a few too many inefficient processes are in place. If your workforce exceeds 100 individuals, not automating simply isn’t a viable option.

A meticulous process analysis should pinpoint opportunities for automation to yield returns within months. We are confident in this concept and propose payment models to clients wherein charges are based solely on functional automation, not developer labor.

You won’t bear any costs for the implementation itself, and from the very outset of the robot’s operations, you’ll start accumulating savings. The underlying principle revolves around return on investment. When a solution costs $100,000 but offers equivalent savings in the initial month, it only becomes an expense in name.

automation myths - automation is costly

Flobotics Case Study:

By identifying a suitable process, savings can materialize from day one. At T.Bank (USA), we devised a straightforward robot in a single day’s effort to automate loan application submissions. Its impact proved monumental, resulting in approximately $5 million in savings for the company. Given that our billing is based on a day’s work, those eight hours contributed to an astonishing 300,000 percent ROI for the company.

Automation Myth 5: Automation Threatens The Security of My Data

Numerous companies employing automation handle susceptible data. In such instances, robots are programmed in a manner that bars even their creators from accessing this information. The entire system is crafted using sample document templates, like those of John Smith, and subsequently, the operational software is transferred to a contented client. Leveraging Robotic Process Automation (RPA), documents become even more secure—devoid of direct human access.

Flobotics Case Study:

Consider the medical industry within the United States, where data security is paramount due to safeguarding sensitive patient information under specialized regulations.

Pain Treatment Center of America, a network of pain management clinics based in the US, outsourced its insurance document processing to an Indian firm. This approach proved time-consuming, expensive, and, most critically, perilous. Data processing occurred globally, heightening the risk of leaks, and human involvement introduced process errors. We developed a robot to function within a virtual machine on the client’s server to rectify this scenario. Consequently, no document is needed to traverse beyond the company’s internal network, eliminating the human factor. This innovation accelerated the process by a staggering 20x.

Final Thoughts

As evident, the realm of automation is rife with myths, half-truths, and opinions.

Yet, when we translate these notions into tangible examples, it becomes abundantly clear that automation possesses the potential to work wonders, often emerging as the paramount avenue for a company’s advancement. The crux of the matter lies in whether we entrust the task of analysis and solution selection to proficient experts.

Is automation set to reshape the future of businesses worldwide? While the initial adoption of such solutions may encounter resistance and concerns about potential risks, the eventual outcomes frequently exceed expectations. The resulting cost savings can significantly expedite business growth.

Consequently, the adept integration of these transformative changes, guided by experts, proves to be a lucrative strategy and a vital step towards sustaining competitiveness and embracing innovation.

Interested what kinds of opportunities can automation unlock in your team and organisation? Don’t hesitate to reach out to us and schedule a free consultation.

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Bart Teodorczuk

Bart Teodorczuk

RPA Tech Lead at Flobotics. Automation consultant expert for the healthcare and finance industry.

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