As Robotic Process Automation (RPA) continues to improve efficiency for the businesses that use it, Blue Prism is ensuring that RPA itself continues to get more efficient too. One of the ways they do it is by making RPA more efficient through the use of reusable bots.
What are reusable bots? They are pre-programmed plug-ins or snippets of code that allow you to apply reusable functions to enhance and expand the functionality of your existing RPA robots (also known as digital workers).
Reusable bots allow the digital workers that make up your RPA strategy to perform more than one task, increasing what they are able to do without increasing the number of robots needed. In other words, these reusable bots – also called concurrent bots – expand your company’s efficiency and productivity without the additional expense or implementation time required for a new RPA robot.
For example, a reusable bot applied to an existing digital worker could enable it to sort and send emails, when the digital worker is not performing its primary task – whatever that task may be.
Such enhanced productivity works across departments – or across your entire enterprise. For instance, a reusable bot that can read and extract information from invoices in the Accounts Payable department could also be applied to a digital worker in the Accounts Receivable department to improve accuracy there as well.
A company that has created a reusable bot to perform certain spreadsheet operations in the Sales department could apply that bot to perform those same operations in the Payroll department as well.
You get the idea. The beauty of it is that you can maximize productivity with minimal effort.
Why Are Reusable Bots Beneficial?
Reusable bots are advantageous because they are pre-built, broadly applicable programs that can increase the functionality of existing bots quickly. Most reusable bots automate processes that are especially common among a broad range of companies today.
Once they are developed for a common task at one organization or for one department, they can quickly be deployed to augment the function of digital workers at a different organization or department without needing to create the functions from scratch.
In RPA development, building functionality is one of the more time-consuming undertakings. With reusable bots, development is simplified and processes are created far faster, since these bots are working with what has already been created.
The other good news: you don’t have to be a developer to implement them. According to David Moss, CTO and Co-Founder of Blue Prism, “As the inventor of enterprise RPA, we have understood from the start the value of code-free reusable business objects. In order to enable scalability of automated business processes it must be easy for non-technical business users to create, deploy, and manage digital workers.”
Using RPA Across Departments for Faster Automation
Here are just a few capabilities that RPA bots can deliver across departments:
The ability to interpret visual data is key for many automated processes. Deep-learning algorithms can visually process images and extract important information. Working from standard image formats, bots can analyze content from a hand-written invoice for Accounting and Finance, extract the necessary data from employment applications in Human Resources or detect certain landmarks from maps for planning purposes.
Harnessing the power of natural language processing allows for scenarios in which customers, employees and suppliers can complete tasks and get the information they need just by asking. A conversational bot can be deployed to leverage and extend robots so they can support the end user without the need for human intervention. This can be used to better serve customers or help non-technical employees easily use internal systems.
Handwritten and Typed Document Recognition
The ability to intelligently and accurately process documents is critical in many departments in nearly all industries. A specialized bot is able to read a variety of printed or hand-written documents, extract the data and structure it into a standardized format. The bot supplies this information to the digital worker, who then inserts the required data where it is needed. This ability can be used in a Purchasing department that gathers PDF catalogs or a Claims department that processes large numbers of customer claim forms.
For global companies, the ability for RPA robots to understand and process information in more than one language is crucial. A language translation bot can utilize neural machine translation to communicate with customers in their own language or gather news and information from other countries across the globe. Every department from Sales to Customer Service to Marketing will benefit from digital workers that have the ability to intelligently translate languages.
Giving RPA robots the ability to understand speech increases their effectiveness and function, whether they’re converting audio into usable text or recognizing and acting upon voice commands. Digital workers can utilize these speech recognition capabilities to automate ordinary, yet somewhat tedious tasks, such as transcribing and collection information from customer service calls or accurately gathering information from business meetings.
The above list gives you an idea of the various capabilities that RPA bots can deliver, but, if you’re looking for a more detailed list of possible use cases, be sure to check out our blog article 70 Manual Processes That Bots Can Do Better.
Which Reusable Bot Is Right for Your Automation Goals?
While reusable bots make the RPA digital workers you already have more useful and more efficient, it can be hard to know which ones to implement – and how. That’s why we created our in-house RPA Implementation Team.
Fully knowledgeable about RPA, our experienced team will help you identify which areas of your business would benefit the most from the application of our RPA solutions and help you decide which reusable bots would add the most value to your existing processes. Contact us today, and let us help you maximize your RPA investment!