Robotic Process Automation FAQ [2021 UPDATE]
1. What is RPA (Robotic Process Automation)?
RPA is a process in which a software bot uses a combination of automation, computer vision, and machine learning to automate repetitive large-scale tasks that are rule-based and triggered. The software is intended to execute repetitive tasks across applications and systems. The software learns a workflow with multiple steps and applications.
In other words, Robotic Process Automation is nothing more than instructing a machine to perform routine, repetitive manual tasks. If there is a logical step to completing the task, the bot will be able to reproduce it.
Simply put, the role of RPA is to automate repetitive tasks that were previously performed by humans.
2. What does the RPA acronym mean?
RPA stands for Robotic Process Automation. It is a fundamental technology that automates structured and repeatable processes so that projects and processes run with greater efficiency and productivity.
3. What problems is RPA solving?
RPA solves the following challenges effortlessly:
- Productivity increases. Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is known for delivering efficiency gains that are great because organizations always strive to do more with less, become leaner, more resilient, and increase profitability.
- Reduce errors and improve compliance. As a result of RPA robots completing the process correctly the first time, they improve compliance and reduce the cost of error correction.
- Improving the quality of customer service. When work gets done faster with RPA robots, it reduces customer effort, gets the job done right the first time, and shifts work faster, improving customer experience (for both external and internal customers).
- Improving the employee experience. When employees are freed from burdensome and repetitive work, they can work on more interesting, meaningful, and value-adding activities and become happier.
4. How reliable is Robotic Process Automation?
RPA is inherently reliable as it reduces the chance of human error.
Since every transaction is regulated by rule-based logic, there is no possibility of error or rejection. Not to mention the built-in audit trail recording who did what, where, and for how long. Every action is recorded from start to finish.
If any problems arise, these logs make it much easier to find the source of the problem (and identify a solution).
5. What can you automate with RPA?
RPA is used to automate repetitive tasks in both the back and front office that need human intervention. Some common RPA examples and use cases we come across are automation of data entry, data extraction, and invoice processing. There are additional examples of RPA use cases that automate tasks across different business departments (sales, HR, operations, etc.) and industries (banking, retail, manufacturing, etc.).
6. How can RPA be used in finance and banking?
You can use RPA to run a bunch of financial tasks. The following are the most popular ones:
- Automatic Report Generation . RPA technology with natural language generation capability can read these lengthy compliance documents before extracting the required information and filing the SAR.
- Registration Of Clients. RPA can greatly simplify this process by collecting data from KYC documents using optical character recognition (OCR) techniques.
- Opening An Account. Automation systematically eliminates data transcription errors that existed between the underlying banking system and requests to open a new account, thereby improving the data quality of the entire system.
7. How many companies are currently using RPA?
There are a large number of corporations currently using the services of RPA. From big companies to SMBes. We can even say that it is countless, The majority of the Fortune 500 use RPA software. For instance, UiPath claims that 8 out of the top 10 Fortune companies use their software.
8. What are the companies that use RPA?
Countless organizations are using RPA out there, from the biggest corporations to scaleups and even SMBs. Among the most famous ones you can find:
9. How to automate my customer service department?
Customer service automation should start with choosing the right software for your business needs. It all depends on the customer support channel you want to automate. But with such a wide selection of omnichannel customer service, you don’t have to spend hours picking and choosing.
Here are 5 ideas for automating the customer service department without losing authenticity:
- Build a well thought out knowledge base
- Integrate your knowledge base
- Create automatic ticket routing
- Add ready-made answers
- Keep an eye on autopilot
10. What are RPA tools?
Robotic Process Automation (RPA) tools help developers or non-technical staff develop RPA robots. RPA bots can automate clerical tasks mainly by manipulating user interfaces. The main tools are UiPath, Automation Everywhere, Power Automate, and many more.
11. Which is the best RPA tool?
There are many RPA tools available on the market, and choosing one of them is a personal challenge. The list of the best RPA tools includes:
- Blue Prism
- Automation Anywhere
- Power Automate
- Nice Systems
- Visual Cron
12. How much RPA will cost and how long will implantation take?
The cost of an RPA implementation is influenced by the number of software components and bots that make up your deployment. On average, the cost of one bot (or unit) is usually between $5,000 and $15,000.
Straightforward systems can be extended with RPA tools very quickly. As a rule, it takes as little as two weeks, while more complex workflows can take two or three months.
13. What kind of task can a robot do and which not?
RPA bots can perform tasks such as collecting data from multiple applications, filling out the same information in multiple places, re-entering data, or copying and pasting – just about any task that is largely driven by rules and schedules. RPA can also perform many complex rules-based tasks by interacting with any software application or website.
14. What is the difference between AI and RPA?
While RPA is used to collaborate with people by automating repetitive processes (assisted automation), AI is used for Intelligent Automation which replaces human labor and automates end-to-end automation (unattended automation). AI also comes as an aid in RPA, as a solution to more complex problems with unstructured data or human decisions.
15. Is RPA the same as Intelligent Automation?
No. RPA tends to focus on automating repetitive and, in many cases, rule-based processes, while intelligent automation includes artificial intelligence (AI) technologies such as machine learning, natural language processing, structured data interaction, and intelligent document processing.
16. Will RPA replace jobs in the near future?
This is not true in the long run. The World Economic Forum says that if digital transformation and automation or technological breakthroughs shrink various roles in jobs by 2022, it will add new roles for jobs. Thus, the number of new jobs will be 80% more than the number of jobs in question.
Excerpt from the report, “By 2022, new jobs that are emerging today should grow from 16% to 27% of the workforce of large companies worldwide, and positions that are currently affected by technological obsolescence should decrease from 31% to 21%. From a purely quantitative perspective, 75 million current job roles could be replaced by a shift in the division of labor between individuals, machines, and algorithms, while 133 million new job roles could emerge at the same time.”
17. Will RPA be the new IT job killer?
Looking back at our experience in RPA we’ve never taken anyone’s job. RPA has many more things to do before taking people’s jobs. Right now it’s usually introduced to the people/teams that are overwhelmed with mundane work, so, RPA allows them to work in a more relaxed way.
Robotic Process Automation, deploying custom software to automate repetitive tasks in an organization’s workflow, will certainly change the IT task landscape. But it’s important to understand that RPA tools are designed to augment, not completely replace, the human effort in an organization.
18. What is the difference between a BPM and an RPA?
In the workflow automation world, BPM (Business Process Management) is a holistic approach to optimizing and automating business processes from start to finish. On the other hand, RPA is a technology that deals with well-defined repetitive tasks that can be just a part of your processes management as a whole.
19. How reliable is Robotic Process Automation?
Deployed efficiently with an organized approach and RPA is super-reliable technology that can decrease the number of errors to zero.
20. What is the difference between RPA and traditional automation?
Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is software that is used to automate a large volume of repetitive and rule-based tasks. On the other hand, traditional automation is the automation of any repetitive tasks. It combines application integration at the database or infrastructure level. This requires minimal human intervention.
21. What is the difference between a BPM and an RPA?
BPM is a holistic approach to optimizing and automating business processes, while RPA solves discrete, repetitive tasks. These tasks usually occur early in the process, so RPA can play an important role in automating them. BPM is end-to-end, so while RPA can be part of a BPM approach, it will not replace BPM.
22. What are the things we need to know before implementing RPA?
There are 10 most crucial ones:
- RPA is not a physical robot.
- Software bots can run 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and can cut costs significantly due to better quality of the outcome.
- RPA technology does not replace your company’s software.
- RPA software provides time for innovation, development, and focus on customer satisfaction.
- RPA technology is not expensive and well worth the investment.
- Software robots will not replace human personnel.
- RPA technology is not just for large organizations.
- RPA technology will create new vacancies in the market.
- Always look for RPA providers or developers with a solid technical background.
- Small RPA implementations can be delivered even in a few days.
23. What is the timeline of a project in RPA?
There’re projects with the total time from idea to implementation is up to a few weeks.
The size of the project can affect the timing. A small process can take 2 weeks of development and 2 weeks of testing before deploying to a production environment. Likewise, a medium-sized process can take 6-8 weeks after being put into production. In the case of a large process, this can take 4-12 months after starting production. A typical example of this is when a process is introduced as an initiative to eradicate or reduce a manual process to a significant number. This takes a lot of development time, testing, and most of the time until the SME client/enterprise is fully satisfied with such a process.
It’s much faster than most of the IT projects – RPA is usually fast to deploy and fast to get benefits from.
24. How to automate data entry 24/7?
You can automate data entry with Robotic Process Automation. You can create a 24/7 automation by combining the work of RPA bots with Optical Character Recognition (OCR) that will pull data from the scanned documents into the system.
RPA is also able to automate certain stages of the data entry process helping human employees to take considered and intelligent decisions during the manual data entry cycle.
25. What is the alternative for RPA?
A new term emerges that turns out to be an excellent alternative to RPA: Intelligent Process Automation (IPA).
4 other options are as follows:
- IT transformation
- Business Process Management Platforms (BPMS)
- Business Process Outsourcing
- Specialized Plug&Play Solutions
26. Is RPA a new technology?
Although the term “RPA” appeared in the early 2000s, initial development began after the 1990s. Therefore, we can’t say that this technology is new. The case is that RPA is extremely popular nowadays. Hence, people tend to think that it was created yesterday.
27. What is RPA, and how does it work?
Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is the use of computer software “robots” to process repetitive digital tasks based on rules, such as filling out the same information in multiple places, re-entering data, or copying and pasting.
RPA works by accessing information from your existing IT systems. There are many ways to integrate RPA tools with your applications.
- One option is to connect to databases and corporate web services on the back end.
- The other is through front-end connections or desktop connections, which take several forms.
28. Is RPA free?
There are both free and paid RPA tools. Fortunately, there are several free, open-source RPA tools out there. Some of these solutions are offered by vendors who ultimately want to sell you their enterprise product, while others are supported and managed by a community of developers seeking to democratize the automation of processes.
29. Where can I use RPA?
There is an uncountable number of industries where you can use RPA tools. The most obvious include:
30. Do I need to know how to code to use RPA?
If you want to use RPA to improve the processes at your company, there is no need for knowing how to code. But of course, you have to find a person who knows how to code. When it comes to hiring RPA developers, it is always better to go with people who have a solid technical background, as designing and developing a good robotics implementation requires a deep level of technicality.
31. What does RPA implementation look like?
Mainly it consists of 7 basic steps. Remember, they can vary from project to project.
- List the processes to be automated. Not all business processes are suitable for RPA.
- Perform a feasibility study.
- Collect user stories.
- Start the development process.
- RPA test process.
- Confirm and expand.
32. What’s next after RPA?
Intelligent Automation is believed to be the next step in the transition to RPA. In the next phase, RPA will go beyond rule-based technology to include more AI-based solutions to create fully intelligent automation.
Another thought predicts that the next phase of RPA will be using digital worker analytics for process discovery. In addition to identifying processes, analytics can help organizations standardize processes. So, the bot that automates these steps will only touch a small part of the overall process.
33. Is RPA a good career?
Robotic Process Automation, or RPA for short, is a good career choice as more and more companies are using RPA to save automation costs and simply cannot find enough people with good RPA skills to complete their jobs.
34. How do I choose an RPA vendor?
There are 10 things to consider when choosing an RPA vendor:
- Background of the company
- Technological innovation
- Comprehensive support
- User experience
- Training material
- RPA platform
- Implementation speed
- Optimized scalability
- Extended reporting
- Data security
35. Which RPA tool is best in the market?
Flobotics’ employees are convinced that it is UiPath. UiPath is a deeply extensible Robotic Process Automation (RPA) tool to automate any workspace or web application. This allows companies around the world to customize and deploy robots for their companies. Uipath can be simplified in virtual terminals or cloud environments.