Artificial intelligence and robotic process automation are valuable tools for creating a more productive and efficient operation. Many manual processes require human workers to spend a lot of time on repetitive tasks. RPA takes over these processes by mirroring the way that a person handles the workflow. The development team sets it up via a graphical user interface that guides the RPA solution through the specific steps needed to get the intended result. While it can tackle complex tasks, it depends on well-defined rule sets. This is where AI comes in.
Combining AI and RPA
RPA, on its own, is not able to make intelligent decisions. Everything that it does needs to be programmed by the development team. AI uses algorithms to learn and make contextual decisions, which is incredibly useful for processing images and text, leveraging and processing data from various systems, and progressively improving workflows to make them more efficient. When you combine AI with RPA, you expand your process automation capabilities.
AI also benefits from having RPA included in its systems. AI systems are only as good as the data that they’re working with. RPA can significantly speed up the process of getting the necessary data to fuel the AI algorithm without needing staff members to manually identify the information necessary. This enables the AI to learn faster and produce results at a greater speed.
The Business Benefits of AI and RPA
- Greater productivity: Automated work processes remove the time-consuming duties that can eat up a lot of a staff member’s day. The system can handle these tasks quickly and work 24/7.
- Fewer human errors: The system can pull data directly from the source and perform checks on it to ensure that it’s accurate. This reduces the risk of human error causing problems with data entry and similar processes.
- Scalability: You don’t need to dedicate workers to repetitive duties. As the demand increases in your business, your application can scale up to meet it.
- Better employee engagement: Staff members no longer need to spend a lot of their day on these tasks, which are often administrative duties outside of the work they actually want to do. They get to focus on projects that require human judgment and creativity.
Development Issues with AI and RPA
While RPA and AI are similar in some ways, application development that combine the two requires multiple teams that are specialized in one or the other. Creating a rule set for RPA and developing an algorithm for AI are vastly different processes, so having dedicated teams for each allows you to get the most out of each technology. Since the project involves many stakeholders, good communication and coordination are important. If vital information isn’t conveyed during the development process, the integration suffers as a result.
You also need to dedicate a lot of time to QA testing, since an error in a rule set or algorithm can upset the entire system. It can be difficult to track down these problems after the application goes into the production environment, so it’s better to catch them early on.
Will AI and RPA Surpass the Human Touch?
AI and RPA augment your human staff. They can do more with their time with the help of these intelligent solutions. Think of this arrangement as complementary, rather than an adversarial arrangement.