Robotic Process Automation as part of your workforce

Date Published: 31-03-2020 | Author: Ryan Smith



Globally, trends are moving towards Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and Intelligent Automation (IA). Organizations need to strategically consider not only the operating model but also how Intelligent Automation will impact people. Robotic Process Automation differs from traditional software by working at the user interface level, replicating the exact actions of a human user and in essence creating, a digital workforce.

RPA is the use of smart software to efficiently carry out manual, repeatable and time-consuming tasks that are normally performed by people. RPA allows employees to focus more on tasks that genuinely require human cognitive abilities for intervention.

Benefits of implementing RPA is that process time is reduced by up to 90% and error rates is amongst zero. Your staff are freed up to focus more on decision making support, customer service and business development.

S4 assists organizations in automating their business processes. At S4, Robotic Process Automation has been implemented to assist our Human Resources and Finance department. With the finance department, the RPA captures pdf invoices.

The manner in which the system operates occurs in the following manner:

  • The robot runs through the finance department employee’s email and collects all invoices.
  • The collected files are taken and stored in a separate folder. The ease of access can be decided by the user at a later stage.
  • It is then programmed to look for specific information on the invoices. For example, the amounts and customer details.
  • The system then takes all the information and places it under the correct headings in an excel document, creating a tab per customer. It then stores all the information from invoices relating to that customer.

This was implemented to remove the repetitive process of capturing invoices and ensuring they capture all the invoices sent by the customers.

S4’s Human Resources department has implemented RPA, the benefits cited from the HR team were the following:

  • Automating an HR function such as timesheets allows for management to create attainable and accurate project plans with all the data needed in one centralized place as opposed to having piles of paperwork.
  • Automating repetitive tasks free up HR staff to focus more on strategic activities or tasks that really enrich the employee at work.
  • Automating certain functions improves compliance. S4 complies to ISO9001 and as such, certain HR functions must follow a particular process as much as possible, you ensure compliance.
  • It allows for accurate collection of data and then to create graphs to understand that data can tell management a lot about the behavior, attitude and engagement levels of their staff.