Best Process Automation Platform To Transform Finance

Financial Automation
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90% of knowledge workers shared that automation improved their lives in the workplace. Along with improving job satisfaction, a process automation platform improves productivity and accuracy while streamlining workflows. 

We’re going to look at how the best RPA tools, along with the best process automation software, can improve your business.

Coming Up

What is Process Automation?

What is a Business Process Automation Platform?

What is Process Automation vs Robotic Process Automation?

When Would You Use a Process Automation Platform?

How to Implement Process Automation?

What are the Benefits of Process Automation?

What are the Challenges of Process Automation?

Final Thoughts

What is Process Automation?

Process automation is the use of technology and software to execute business processes. Process automation collects and connects data systems, carries out tasks, and reduces the need (or in some cases, removes the need) for human intervention. 

As a result, businesses are able to prevent bottlenecks, complete processes faster, and dramatically decrease the chance of mistakes. Digital solutions also enable standardization, improve internal control, and also practice process improvement.

What is a Business Process Automation Platform?

A business process automation platform provides a low-code solution to automate business processes. Process automation software is different from robotic process automation (RPA), and we will share how in more detail in the next section, but first here is what a process automation platform can do:

  • Connect data systems and ingest data from disparate sources 
  • Transform data as to perform calculations and analysis 
  • Produce, send, and store reports and alerts 

A business process automation platform transforms data into usable insights, while also executing complex finance functions, such as: reconciliation, regulatory reporting, expense analytics, and rebate management, to name a few. 

What is Process Automation vs Robotic Process Automation?

It’s important to understand how process automation and robotic process automation are different because they are easy to confuse. While they both do help to complete critical business processes, they do so in different ways, and actually, they end up complementing one another greatly. 

Robotic process automation uses a “bot” or software program that is either installed on your server or computer, or integrated with your existing systems. 

The RPA bot must be trained/coded to complete tasks by interacting with on-screen elements such as buttons or text boxes. The bot, or software, then mimics human actions such as mouse clicks or typing to work through a process. 

For example, RPA can:

  • Click buttons in a CRM 
  • Trigger a macro in a spreadsheet 
  • Read values from a PDF 

RPA software is well-suited for repetitive and data-heavy tasks that rely on system interaction. Process automation software is more robust in that it can handle data manipulation, which is especially useful for finance teams. 

When Would You Use a Process Automation Platform?

A process automation platform can help your business maximize productivity by 85x and reduce errors by 90%. Here are a few process automation examples worthwhile to try out: 

1. Reconciliation

Reconciliation is a necessary process that should happen at least once a month during the month-end close process. However, it ends up taking many organizations days or weeks to complete because of disparate data and the need to manually match transactions across internal and external documentation. 

With process automation software, the reconciliation process happens in minutes as the system can quickly cross-check records and alert your team if any discrepancy is found. 

2. Accounts Receivable 

A timely cash flow is necessary to stay in business, which means that accounts receivable have to be maintained and in order. Automation enables you to create and send invoices, record payments, and share payment reminders, which all help your business to get paid on time. 

3. Employee Onboarding

When you hire a new employee, it becomes time-consuming to onboard them properly. From filling the open position to training the employee, a lot of man hours are dedicated to the cause. With a process automation platform, you can let the system create a consistent process that’s easy to repeat every time a new employee joins your team. 

How to Implement Process Automation?

Even though every organization operates differently, it’s undeniable that a process automation platform will be beneficial. If you’re wondering how and where to begin, follow these steps: 

1. Process Identification

There are certain processes that are ripe for automation. In order to identify which processes to start with, take a look at what your organization does on a daily basis. Find the processes that are:

  • Are repetitive 
  • Include multiple people 
  • Require compliance trails 
  • Are time-sensitive 
  • Rely on data 
  • Are standardized or rules-based 
  • Have an effect on other processes and systems 

2. Align with Business Goals

Automation exists to help businesses reach their goals. To be able to monitor and assess how automation is impacting your overall organization, it’s a good idea to first state your business goals and envision how automation will be used. This way, you can track in the right direction. 

3. Select Your Tools

Take your time to research the best process automation software on the market. You’ll want to look for tools that are low-code, easy-to-use, scalable, and secure. 

4. Initiate Change Management

Be sure to communicate with your entire organization about the use of the automation platform and reasoning behind it. It should be clear that the software is here to assist and augment their work, not to replace their roles. Everyone should be on board with a positive attitude to welcome a process automation platform. 

5. Measure the Results

Once you initiate process automation, monitor the results by measuring key performance indicators (KPIs) so that if need be, you can make adjustments. 

What are the Benefits of Process Automation?

When you implement a process automation platform, the ROI is seemingly immediate as the benefits are extensive. Some of the most outstanding advantages you’ll experience as an organization include: 

1. Enhanced Productivity

Since finance automation platforms prevent bottlenecks and remove key person dependencies, your business’ efficiency and productivity increases. Manual data entry and time-consuming data manipulation is streamlined so that processes can be completed seamlessly and in less time. 

2. Boost Compliance

Process automation platforms also make it easier to comply with regulations and standards. There’s no way to cut corners or lose data, thereby reducing risks. 

Also, since a process automation platform stores all data and steps taken, it makes audit trails immediate along with version history.. 

3. Increase Internal Control

Processes that are fit for automation tend to be repetitive and critical. As such, they are important to oversee and standardize, which automation software makes a reality. With increased internal control comes transparency into the status of processes, too. 

4. Reduce Costs

Businesses note that process automation results in a reduction of costs and gains in revenue. Whether it’s due to less costly mistakes, duplicate work, increased productivity, and a lower reliance on hours of human resources being put to work, a cost savings is attractive to any business. 

5. Minimize Errors

Process automation software removes manual errors from taking place. Mistakes not only negatively impact a business and its bottom line, but they can also affect the customer experience. So, it’s in everyone’s best interest to reduce errors from occurring. 

What are the Challenges of Process Automation?

In order to deploy process automation successfully, there are a few challenges to realize in advance and prepare for so you can avoid them, namely: 

1. Go Slow and Steady

Start slow. Overhauling everything at once is a recipe for mistakes and disaster, especially if everyone is not on board with the change. It’s a good idea to share the plan with your entire organization and begin with one task at a time. 

This way, it’s possible to assess the results and upsides to continue moving through the changes little by little. 

2. Be Clear

When you start to automate a process, the process should first be clearly documented. Break down every tiny step of the process as clearly as possible. 

Ambiguity could lead to errors in implementation, so it’s best to be more detailed than you think you need to be. During this detailing phase, you may also be able to remove duplicate efforts. 

3. Manage Goals

Set goals in advance and define the key performance indicators that you will monitor. This way, you can check in to see if everything is running as you’d hope and the outcomes are meeting expectations. 

With a low-code process automation platform, it’s possible to automate at your own pace and enable every team member to be able to utilize the solution as it is built intuitively. 

Final Thoughts

Business process automation software empowers businesses to operate more productively, minimize mistakes, alleviate manual work, and save time and money. 

By choosing a process automation platform that is robust and scalable, you can optimize your business’ performance with little effort.

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