Robotic Process Automation

What is Robotic Process Automation?

Robotic Process Automation (RPA) software is capable of automating repetitive and time-consuming manual processes, in turn freeing up employees to focus on value-creating and customer facing activities. It’s highly customisable and can be quickly designed, developed and deployed. Businesses are able to carry out high-volume manual tasks with far greater accuracy at a faster speed.

How does it work?

RPA uses software robots to plug into existing environments and systems, and can be taught to identify information and objects to complete tasks in the same way that a human employee would do. The software robots create a scalable virtual workforce that can be used as supplementary capacity.

Using drag and drop interfaces, RPA software is configured to replicate the process behaviour of employees. The RPA interface will create instructions for the robot to follow when the automation is run. It’s able to complete rule-based tasks involving structured or semi-structured information in a secure environment 24/7, with a decreased error rate and increased controls.

Benefits of RPA

Cost reduction

With the cost of offshoring business processes in recent years rising, RPA helps businesses reduce cost by 25 - 50%. It can quickly deliver benefits with high ROIs of >300%. RPA is more scalable than human capital when businesses encounter fluctuating demand or activity levels as RPA can be scaled up or down without concerning the increase in labour cost.

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Quality assurance and efficiency

Automated tasks require minimal human involvement and can be set up to run 24/7. RPA ensures reliable and high-quality outcomes as it mitigates the risks of human error. Time-consuming tasks can be completed with greater efficiency and bots can adapt or be updated to work with changing processes and technologies.

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When setting up RPA, controls can be put in place to access relevant information for sensitive processes allowing the software robots to run without human supervision in a compliant manner and with a full audit trail. This reduces the risk of privacy breaches for example, of customer information, fraud and improves the efficiency of the process.

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Resource management

RPA focuses on improving the productivity of processes and does not necessarily result in a reduction of headcount. It can free up available resources to focus on tasks that generate greater value. Resources can be deployed to concentrate on more creative and customer-focused roles. As RPA replicates manual tasks, most of the barriers to adoption relate to fears from employees that it will make existing roles redundant. PwC’s experience with RPA is that employees are very keen to automate the relevant high-volume tasks, so they can continue with tasks they see as a more valuable use of their time. The impact of RPA is you can remove the tiresome parts of employees’ jobs and instead allow them to focus more on adding real value.

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Our approach

PwC’s global network has been instrumental in assisting clients to successfully customise and deploy RPA both locally and internationally. With our extensive experience across industries, we’re able to provide a one-stop-shop service – from understanding business and technical requirements to final implementation. We are dedicated to helping clients incorporate RPA into their business strategy to realise both short and long term visions.

Contact us

Chris Barendregt

Partner, PwC New Zealand

Tel: +64 21 388 033

Matthew Whitaker

Director, PwC New Zealand

Tel: +64 21 039 7559

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