Have you ever spent fifteen minutes explaining your issue to a customer service agent who transfers you to another phone agent who asks you to describe your problem again? 

 

If data had been shared properly between the representatives, that second interaction could have been shorter and easier. 

 

Leveraging the power of Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and Robotic Desktop Automation (RDA) are a company’s two best assets in facilitating a better CX and cutting operational costs. Here’s why.

 

According to a 2020 report by Grandview Research, the global robotic process automation market size was valued at $1.1 billion in 2019 and is anticipated to see a CAGR of 33.6% by 2027. As companies find new ways to translate their customers’ needs into technical solutions, robotic automation processes will continue to drive the future of CX.

 

RPA and RDA In Action

 

RPA or Robotics Process Automation, also known as unattended automation, works to automate manual, mundane, and repetitive tasks without the need for any human intervention. Leslie Willcox, a professor of work, technology, and globalization at the London School of Economics, notes that robotic process automation enhances human skills and “takes the robot out of the human.” 

 

RPA frees up humans from monotonous, repetitive work so that their skills are repurposed for jobs that require creativity, empathy with customers, and complex tasks that require human judgment.  An example of RPA is invoice generation, where requests from invoices are picked from a queue and the actions that a human would perform are carried out on disparate systems, click-by-click, keystroke-by-keystroke, and an invoice is created.   

 

In contrast, RDA or Robotics Desktop Automation, is more of a robot assistant that works alongside a human. In RDA-enabled environments, humans and robots collaborate and build upon each other's strengths; a human’s judgment, and a robot’s speed and accuracy at completing “dull, dirty and dangerous” tasks.  An example of RDA would be an environment where a complex order needs to be placed. An RDA can launch transactions and copy large data sets while a human validates the intermediate steps and outcome before the order is executed. 

 

 

Whereas RPA is most frequently utilized for back-office tasks like generating invoices, RDA works in step with human employees to speed up processes by automating tasks within the process.

 

3 Ways RPA and RDA Improve CX

 

Well-implemented automation procedures can provide a myriad of positive impacts on CX from improving customer engagement to redefining customer journey maps. But, these systems only work when you have a clear, nuanced understanding of your customers’ needs. 

 

Here are three ways you can use RPA and RDA to improve CX:

 

Save Teams and Customers Time: Doesn’t everyone hate calls where a representative says they need 5 minutes to “review your account” and then places you on hold for eons? Automated robots can present key information to agents at the right moment, saving customers time, and improving the bottom line.

 

Around the Clock Automation: Robots can help customers after core business hours by taking requests, and either fully or partially automating them and queueing up the exceptions that require a human response. This process dramatically improves the speed and scale of CX. 

 

Enhance Your Team’s Ability to Focus On Value-added Activities: With more automated data entry and retrieval, a human workforce can be redeployed to deliver more strategic, high-touch activities to support business growth. While some people have a fear that the “robot revolution” will displace human jobs, robots actually empower people to focus on the most critical parts of their work and teach the robots how to do their job better.

 

Robotic Automation Is Not A Panacea

 

While these technologies are exciting, remember that robotic automation is not a panacea. 

Implementation plans are key, and it’s critical to leverage subject matter experts who deeply understand your customers’ journey to inform the robotic processes that will follow. Begin by mapping out current processes, identifying gaps, and leverage six sigma practices to arrive at an optimal to-be state. Then, you can pair your CX processes and operations with the right automation (RPA or RDA). Without this, you risk creating new problems instead of fixing old ones. 

 

One of the most common challenges when implementing automation is poorly structured data. Data sources should be static and highly organized since automation tools are unable to identify errors and exceptions. Creating clear rules for how data should be handled helps to ensure that the system selects the correct values and manipulates them appropriately.  

This leads us to the use of cognitive robots and automation where AI and machine learning solutions are integrated into RPA and RDA processes. This can be applied when employees have to work with unstructured and semistructured data, like scanned images and handwritten documents. This streamlines the workflow for employees and enables them to complete tasks faster.

When humans handle the exceptions from cognitive robots while training them in the process, you get “Human in the Middle” automation that helps robots take on more mundane tasks.

Once support teams orchestrate RDA (assisted robots) that trigger unassisted RPA, they can leverage cognitive capabilities and reach CX nirvana with hybrid cognitive automation.

Are you ready to take your CX to the next level with strategically applied AI? Drop us a note here and let’s transform your customer journey together. 

Manish Pandya

SVP, Digital
June 25, 2020