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What is Robotic Process Automation (RPA)?

Updated: Aug 28, 2020

The term Robotic Process Automation is used to describe technology that can be programmed to handle business processes, tasks or actions automatically.

As opposed to workflow processes, RPA can mimic the actions of a human and has more flexibility and capability to interpret, trigger responses and communicate with multiple software packages.

RPA can be used for many business activities, particularly repetitive tasks which previously may have been prone to staff errors. Automating these processes can be time efficient and cost effective.

For example, RPA can:

  • Log into any application

  • Move files and folders

  • Copy and paste data

  • Fill in forms

  • Read and write to databases

  • Open emails and attachments

  • Extract structured and semi structured data from documents

  • Scrape data from the web

  • Make calculations

Forrester* described RPA as ‘another step in the evolution of business processes’, whilst The Everest Group** have identified that where it can be utilised is endless with all departments within a business benefitting including:

  • Finance & Accounting - accounts receivable, accounts payable, general ledger

  • Procurement – invoice processing, requisition to purchase order

  • Human Resource – payroll, hiring, candidate management

  • Customer service – Account applications, Order Handling, Shipping Notifications, Customer Account Updates, Queries & complaints

Importantly by implementing RPA, businesses are not replacing their workforce but instead free up their employees to work on more strategic tasks.

To find out how Robotic Process Automation can benefit your business, contact the Enterprise RPA team on 0333 987 3938

*The New Frontier of Automation: Enterprise RPA, a Forrester Consulting Study – December 2017

**Seizing the Robotic Process Automation (RPA) Market Opportunity


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