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Process automation: It’s about time

Emerging automation technologies that promise to both simplify and streamline work processes are increasingly becoming a reality for businesses in virtually all industries

Robotic process automation (RPA) solutions are rapidly growing into powerful tools that can eliminate repetitive and manual tasks, and enable employees to save time and focus more on creating value for the business.

“In a rapidly changing workplace, business leaders are starting to recognise that they need a fresh perspective on automation and see it through the eyes of the people who work in the business,” says Bob Weare, chief marketing officer at Softomotive, a leading RPA vendor.

“A traditional, or so-called top-down, approach to RPA is no longer the full answer due to things like higher upfront costs, increased project risk, lack of innovation and low people engagement that comes from centralisation. With so many stalled RPA projects out there, it’s time to take a different approach to engage the workforce and maximise business outcomes.”

Softomotive has pioneered its “People1st” approach for RPA that effectively democratises RPA, putting power in the hands of the end-users so they can automate manual and repetitive tasks.

“By beginning with relatively small tasks and scaling up after learning what works best for the business, automation processes can be accelerated,” says Mr Weare. “The bottom-up ‘People1st’ approach creates citizen developers who can be equipped to automate tasks as and when they want, within pre-set boundaries.

“This obviously demands close collaboration between business users and the IT department, which can address the shortage of developers and open up automation to end-users who don’t have programming skills or experience.”

Softomotive’s recent People1st Employee Study 2019 of more than 1,200 employees in the United States, UK and India provided some unique insights into the value to businesses of engaging employees throughout automation processes.

The study reveals that 37 per cent of employees’ time in a normal working week is spent on tasks that don’t contribute significant value to the business. This finding clearly illustrates the amount of employees’ time which can be saved through the adoption of RPA technologies and the importance of prioritising RPA for firms that want employees to create more business value.

It’s clear that employees want to be more than just passive observers when it comes to RPA. Softomotive’s research reveals that 77 per cent want at least a little input into decisions about how and where RPA should be leveraged.

Such findings should be seen in the context of the difficulties facing many companies in finding talented computer programmers. According to Code.org, while there were fewer than 30,000 computer science graduates in 2017, there were more than 500,000 open computing jobs in the United States.

When it comes to automation, Softomotive believes in providing the smoothest RPA journey by making it easy for enterprises to start small, learn quickly and scale seamlessly. Its RPA technology includes WinAutomation desktop software and ProcessRobot server-based enterprise automation. This choice of automation solutions allows businesses to implement automation technologies that fit their business requirements and ambitions.

Collaboration tools for employees, where they can upload automation solutions that they have created, means agile practices can be more easily adopted and innovation can be quickly shared across the business, enabling organisations to gain the full benefits of RPA.

Mr Weare concludes: “By combining a ‘People1st’ approach with our intuitive and easy-to-use software, companies can futureproof their deployment of RPA. As our solutions are priced to scale, businesses can expand on a fully enterprise basis, in a cost-effective way.”

For more information please visit www.softomotive.com

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