RPA: Getting the most from Fintech’s workhorse

Nick Foster 30 August 2021

A technology that really comes into its own as a supporting act to some of the digitalisation superstars, robotic process automation (RPA) can be of immense strategic value to financial services organisations—if you deploy it smartly.

We’ve seen large financial services organisations get to production with their first automated process within a matter of weeks. And because the costs of running an RPA project are not high, organisations can quickly see a healthy return on investment—driven by cost savings and increased efficiencies—even on small processes.

With RPA becoming more widespread and accessible, it could be easy to think of it as a plug-and-play solution, but here are our five recommendations to ensure you have a successful and effective RPA project.

Analysis beats development

You should first treat RPA projects as business process analysis jobs. There is no point automating a broken process as this defeats the point of RPA and its benefits. Instead, first, restructure the underlying process for increased robotic coverage and don’t try to fix broken processes with more coding.

Don’t automate vanity processes

Processes should only be automated if there is a clear and calculated business case and not because, say, someone in senior leadership finds running a report a bit onerous.

Reduce unstructured data and judgment-based decisions

Robots don’t handle these well. Unless they can be reduced or avoided through restructuring the process at the outset, you may need to reconsider whether the process is suitable for RPA.

The robot is only as stable as the application

An unstable underlying application that experiences a lot of downtime will not result in an effective RPA implementation.

Consider what happens if the robot fails

For compliance, you should always keep a human-based resource open as a fallback in the rare event of the robotic process failing.

For this reason, some companies choose to restrict RPA to user interface operations, rather than embedding them more deeply within databases, despite the increased time savings of the latter.

The key to a successful RPA project is choosing the right technology partner. To ensure successful automation outcomes, Realm Digital starts any RPA project with a business process analysis.