Organisations having to work with legacy systems is more common than you would think. Moving away from these legacy systems to a modern platform will need a lot of investment and will take years if not months depending on the type of system. This bottleneck should not detract you from your objective of improving your customer experience.
Pain points in your customer experience
To improve customer experience, you need to first understand the list of pain points for your customers. Review your business processes which are impacted by these pain points to understand if the pain point is because of
- discrepancy of data between the systems
- timeliness of data available
- slow response from the system
- Unable to trust the data on the system
The next step is to investigate and see if automation will be able to address any of the pain points, more specifically with RPA.
What is Robotic Process Automation
Robotic process automation (or RPA) is a form of business process automation technology based on metaphorical software robots (bots) or on artificial intelligence (AI)/digital workers. It is sometimes referred to as software robotics (not to be confused with robot software) – wikipedia
Some examples where automation has been implemented successfully (CIO.com)
“Walmart CIO Clay Johnson says the retail giant has deployed about 500 bots to automate anything from answering employee questions to retrieving useful information from audit documents. “A lot of those came from people who are tired of the work,” Johnson says.”
American Express Global Business Travel
“David Thompson, CIO of American Express Global Business Travel, uses RPA to automate the process for canceling an airline ticket and issuing refunds. Thompson is also looking to use RPA to facilitate automatic rebook recommendations in the event of an airport shutdown, and to automate certain expense management tasks.”
This does not mean everything should be automated using RPA or RPA is not the only solution for every pain point in the business process. Look at our recent post which explains anything vs everything of automation.
Prioritise business processes that will improve CX
Firstly, understand the list of business processes which has depicted the pain points. Then review each and every business process. Agree on a scoring mechanism for each of the attributes.
10 key attributes
- System flexibility – Does the system support API’s or is this a legacy system which does not allow integration
- Complexity of automation – Is this a major front office / back-office system with a complicated integration and too many dependencies
- Frequency of the process – How frequently this process is executed i.e… daily, weekly, monthly, yearly
- Duration pre-automation – How long the process takes currently
- Automation alternatives – Are there any alternatives available i.e… if could not automate
- Current effort – How much is the utilisation of employee hours
- System Changes – How many changes are applied to the systems involved on a monthly basis
- Time and effort required to automate – How much time and effort is required to automate
- Automation Benefits – What are potential benefits in customer experience after automation (direct/in-direct)
- On-going Bot Maintenance – How much of automation re-engineering required (on-going) due to changes in the system
Using all of the above 10 attributes define a scoring mechanism. Apply the scores for each of the business process which you think are potential candidates. Analyse carefully to see if the benefits of automation outweigh the effort required to implement automation.
To simplify the scoring, you could use Red – Amber – Green. Assign a value for each of them Red = 1, Amber = 2, Green =3. Once you assign these RAG flags you can then add up the scores. In the example above the scores are
- Business Process 1 = 20
- Business Process 2 = 17
- Business Process 3 = 22
- Business Process 4 = 18
- Business Process 5 = 22
So, the candidates to be automated would be BP1, BP3 and BP5 (ie.. top 3 from the scores)
Implement Automation with RPA
Now you have identified the candidates for RPA, you need to decide on the right tool to implement RPA. We have been successfully implemented RPA using Automation Anywhere. There are various other options available, you will have choose the best tool that suits to your needs.
Also, In order to implement automation sustainably in your organisation you will have to establish Automation Centre of Excellence who will govern and monitor what and what not to automate. Look at our recent post which explains how you can accelerate your automation journey.
RPA is becoming the de facto standard for automation. We recommend organisations to always be fully aware of both the benefits as well as the implications that RPA will bring. Do not underestimate the amount of effort required to implement automation especially if you are at the beginning of the journey. Also most important is to have a clear governance in place to monitor and guide automation efforts.
ACS has helped organisations in implementing RPA to automate business processes increasing efficiencies. Complete the form and you can receive a FREE no obligation consultation.