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Making RPA Tools Work for Your Business: The Right Software Is Just the Beginning

 

Running a business in the 21stcentury has its positives and negatives. On the one hand, there are more opportunities and tools out there for the savvy entrepreneur to use. However, on the other hand, this increased number of provisions means more competition, more things to consider, and more responsibilities.

Fortunately, if you can learn to use technology in the correct way, it’s possible to mitigate many of the potential problems. One such innovation that’s become an essential tool for modern businesses is robotic process automation (RPA). Set to become an $8.75 billion industry by 2024, RPA is defined by Deloitte as software that deploys “robots” to “capture and interpret existing IT applications to enable transaction processing, data manipulation, and communication across multiple IT systems.”

Creating an Automated Workforce

Put simply, by using RPA tools, you can hand over responsibility for certain tasks to a piece of intelligent software. In general, the tasks will be those that are repetitive and rule-based. In other words, if you can input a set of commands for a robot to follow, you can let RPA tools do the work for you. However, as is the case with all technology, the best results don’t always come from an out-of-the-box solution. To integrate RPA tools into your business and benefit from a team of robots working alongside your human employees, some post-purchase work is required. Because a robot will often be plugged into a legacy system or replace it altogether, you need to carefully set the conditions under which it’s supposed to work.

Much like humans, computers aren’t born smart. Instead, they’re programmed to become smart, thanks to their ability to follow commands – and, in the case of machine learning, even self-teach. As a result, it’s important to “train” your RPA tools to operate in the ways you want.

But before that can happen, you need to identify where this technology can fit into your business. Using the latest RPA tools, you can complete this part of the integration process fairly easily. For example, with the Kryon RPA platform, users can run a process discovery scan after the initial installation. Once the software has read through the computerized tasks on the network, it will produce an overview of what can be automated and what can’t. From this, the user can turn on or off the robotic controls at their leisure.[DT1] 

A Robot Is Only as Smart as Its Owner Makes It

Once the tasks have been chosen, it’s then time to teach the robot how to operate. For instance, if your plan is to have a robot take control of your payroll (usually a simple and repetitive task), you’ll need to input the parameters it needs to follow. This could mean setting the software to read through static information such as your employee database and pay rates and then cross-reference this with live data such as hours clocked in and absences.

Once you’ve done that, the robot is off and running. However, this “training” is work you’ll have to put in up front. Essentially, if you want to run smart RPA tools, you need to feed them the right information. The time and effort involved are an important investment in your future RPA success, offering long-term benefits that can dwarf their cost.

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