Most businesses know that Intelligent Automation will save them money. Yet many aren’t sure how to adopt software automation and how to measure if they are getting the proper return on their investment.
There’s no magic formula, or course. Every company has different needs and a different culture. Yet Intelligent Automation typically results in cost savings of 40 percent to 75 percent, with the payback ranging from several months to several years.
The key is to understand the different types of software automation and to develop a strategy that best fits your company’s needs. Here’s a look first at the three primary types of Intelligent Automation, followed by tips on how to implement them effectively.
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Basic automation involves simple, repetitive tasks that are easy to understand and organize. As a general rule, this is the quickest way for a company to save money. In order to maximize those savings, basic automation can be used for high-volume activities, tasks that take time and are prone to human error and areas where quality has been inconsistent.
Enhanced automation involves more specialized and sophisticated tasks such as scanning emails for specific information. This type of Intelligent Automation is usually more expensive, but the savings tend to increase over time. Enhanced automation can be used in areas such as IT, finance and accounting, where complex tasks are more prone to human error.
Cognitive automation, as the name suggests, involves things like artificial intelligence, where the software is so advanced that it can mimic human functions such as reasoning. Cognitive labor is much more difficult to integrate into a company, and it will likely take the most time to produce savings. But it can provide the biggest payback, with profound insights and continuous improvement as the software learns new ways of doing things.
Knowing which type of automation fits with your company is important. But you also need to develop a strategy on how best to implement Intelligent Automation. Here are some key ways to do that.
Prepare your organization.
- Make sure the right executives are committed and have voiced their support.
- Have a strategy for the initial steps. Streamline the approval process.
- Have rules that focus on results, not restrictions. Be willing to change them.
- Get risk and security staff involved. Understand their issues and how to resolve them.
- Do whatever it takes to keep the process moving forward.
Start with a few pilot programs.
- Invest in basic automation first for some easy “wins.”
- Learn from mistakes and celebrate successes.
- Take the time to implement the first projects correctly.
- Don’t force anything to be automated simply because you “own the license.”
- Communicate early successes to key executives.
Keep expanding the program.
- Look for new areas to automate that will show the greatest savings. Use the lessons from pilot programs.
- Once the program shows success, be prepared for an avalanche of automation requests from all over the organization. Have a clear approach to prioritizing them.
- Consider building a Center of Excellence to centralize automation expertise.
- Look for opportunities to increase automation, savings and the quality of business information.
- Brainstorm ways that cognitive automation could give your organization a competitive advantage.
- Get a head start on establishing a governance model to ensure future efficiencies and corporate compliance.
- Plan for change – nothing is static – business is always changing, and so must the automations
- Stay up-to-date on current trends and make sure there is continuous improvement in your automation efforts.
There has never been a better time to adopt Intelligent Automation. But you’ll need to move quickly and have a strategy in place to make the most of it. Otherwise, you may find yourself falling behind the competition.
Learn more about how Intelligent Automation can help make your business more efficient.
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