Will Work for Forms: The Robotics Resume Worth Reading


07/03/2019

The robot revolution has arrived. It’s not Terminator’s terrifying Skynet, nor is it the mostly-benevolent mechanical men of Asimov’s near-future. According to research firm Gartner, it’s actually something much simpler: robotic process automation (RPA). Now outpacing all other enterprise software markets, RPA saw 63 percent growth in 2018 and is on track for 1.3 billion in revenue this year.

This quiet revolution does have its detractors. As noted by Tech Radar, managers and staff often worry that RPA will replace flesh-and-blood workers, making enterprise processes more helpful but less human. But the real benefit of RPA comes from meeting the middle: People are terrible at repetitive, manual tasks such as data entry, while robots excel. Humans want answers, while machines thrive on process. The result? There’s an entry-level job just waiting for RPA in the enterprise, forms processing.

Who Needs Manual?

Companies are losing time with manual processes, and as Financial Director writes, it’s not a small amount of time, either. Recent survey data found that 26 percent of employee work days are wasted on “administrative chores, unnecessary tasks, and outdated ways of working.” More specifically, 26 minutes every day are “devoted to outdated technology tasks.”

For most enterprises these numbers aren’t surprising, but the sheer volume and complexity of legacy-driven manual processes makes it difficult to implement new digital initiatives without causing more problems than they solve.

Enter RPA. As Tech Crunch points out, one key benefit of robotics-driven processes is that they play well with existing legacy systems, allowing organizations to layer on additional functionality without impacting current outcomes. This is especially beneficial for processes that require consistently high levels of detail and must be performed again, and again, and again — often at speed.

Consider forms processing. From insurance firms to healthcare providers, law offices and financial institutions, forms are critical to effective service delivery, liability mitigation, and necessary chain-of-ownership in the event of an audit or evaluation. But the sheer quantity and type of forms handled by organizations creates its own set of problems. Writing new documents, capturing data, searching for information, and processing results can quickly overwhelm front-line staff and leave little time for business innovation.

Forms and Function

It’s one thing to articulate the high-level benefits of RPA. It’s another to justify implementing them at scale. Just like cloud computing or big data analytics, organizations must prioritize business function and measurable benefits over technological wizardry. The good news? Forms processing with RPA offers objective advantages including:

    • Data Capture

      In a perfect world, customers (correctly) enter data using electronic forms in a single, unified format. In reality, enterprises deal with multiple file types, handwritten data fields, and incomplete forms every day. RPA streamlines the process of manual forms processing by enabling automation with data capture using a forms processing toolkit and a routing automation software.

    • OCR Information Search

      Optical character recognition (OCR) tools help companies search for information that may not be immediately obvious. Paired with RPA, OCR permits straightforward data searches to quickly find key information.

    • Forms Completion

      Once data is captured and forms are vetted, RPA solutions can help ensure they’re properly filed and placed in the appropriate queue for human-staff handling.

We Can Start Monday

Robotic process automation isn’t coming for enterprise jobs. Instead, it offers a way to leverage legacy tools without the cost and risk associated with complete digital transition. Even better? These robots require minimal onboarding, virtually no oversight, and are entirely reliable — and yes, they can start Monday.

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