Software robots in the workplace

Written by Gary Conway in Software robots in the workplace on December 15, 2016

I had the pleasure of hosting Paul Bartley, Director of Global Shared Services at Becton Dickinson (or BD as it's called these days) at the SSON Summit near Atlanta recently. We did a sort of fireside chat about BD's implementation of Automation Anywhere's RPA solution. Here are Steve's most compelling insights from our chat.

I was struck by the notion that BD must be one of the largest companies which so few people have even heard of. But the company is enormous. At $12B in annual revenue, BD is one of the world's largest medical technology and life science companies, with 45,000 employees in more than 50 countries. As impressive, it has to be one of the world's best managed companies, having been around for about 120 years.

Written by Jay Bala in Software robots in the workplace on October 18, 2016

We have officially launched Bot Insight, the industry’s first analytics solution designed for bots, and had a chance to showcase it to attendees at our monthly BotVisions webinar last week. (If you were there, thanks for joining). In the webinar, our customer Dell spoke about how they are leveraging native RPA analytics to grow their business.  

 

During the course of the webinar we received more than 30 questions. I would like to take the opportunity to answer several questions we did not get to, and welcome you to ask more after reading this post and listening to the webinar recording.

Written by Jay Bala in Software robots in the workplace on February 11, 2016

When you have a smart Digital Workforce made up of bots that can capture and measure business data flowing through them, you can be quickly overwhelmed with all the information hitting you in real time. How can you make that influx of information actionable, easy to consume, and easy to act upon?

If you have an enterprise RPA solution that features a robust analytics foundation, you can institute a simple 3-step framework (measure --> act --> improve) wherein all data being recorded can be acted on to enhance business benefits and ROI. Let’s take a look at how this framework helps in the context of a healthcare payer.

Written by Jay Bala in Software robots in the workplace on December 2, 2015

Seamstress --> Sewing Machines --> Garment Factories --> Computer Controlled Stitching Machines

 

Propeller Planes --> Jet Engine Planes --> Instrument Landing --> AutoPilot --> Drones

 

Punch cards --> Green Terminals --> Rich clients --> Web UI --> Bots

 

In each of the above cycles of human progress, what started off as an individual, human skill-driven activity that produced a certain amount of output/throughput got mechanized. Over a period of time, those activities were vastly automated in a fashion the original practitioners could never have dreamt of. The biggest advantage of these automation cycles was the enormous scaling up of the throughput/output of these processes, along with a high level of output predictability. As the scale and predictability went up, the level of human involvement during these processes became more exception-driven than need-oriented. Along the way, the measurement of these processes and their throughputs also matured, leading to an exceptional, data-driven ability to spot anomalies and introduce corrections over time. 

Written by Jordan McMahon in Software robots in the workplace on November 16, 2015
McKinsey recently released research on the outlook for automation and jobs, and proves to be an interesting new angle on the “man vs. machine” debate. The 8-ball summary? Outlook: good. 

Written by Jordan McMahon in Software robots in the workplace on October 6, 2015
Automation used to be about business APIs or a 2-5 year project, large investments, and ongoing, laborious projects. RPA—the next evolution in automation technology—turns that concept on its head. So what is RPA that other solutions aren’t? Here’s a quick, 3-minute rundown:

Written by Jordan McMahon in Software robots in the workplace on June 25, 2015
As we mentioned in my previous how-to post, the flow of information between multiple systems can be overwhelming, and moving the data can lead to errors that creep into all areas of the business. 

 

Let’s take a look at how the data aggregation process is transformed with automation, this time in a procurement example. 

Written by Jordan McMahon in Software robots in the workplace on June 3, 2015

Businesses constantly move information between numerous systems, including cloud applications, websites, desktop applications, terminals, and email. Whether it’s enrolling a new hire into 15 HR systems or gathering product details from your suppliers’ websites, an employee might be tasked with manually transposing a veritable sea of data.

Written by Jordan McMahon in Software robots in the workplace on April 21, 2015
RPA is a hot technology. It’s in Fortune 500 companies. It’s in BPOs. And now shared services organizations are talking about it too. The benefits that RPA promises are a slam dunk for any company: cost savings, a near-zero error rate, quality and compliance improvement, extending the value of existing investments, processes that can run themselves 24/7, re-focusing the workforce on value-added work, potentially limitless ROI...it’s seems to check all the boxes.  

Yet there are the Agent Mulder-like skeptics who “want to believe” but are struggling to separate hype from reality.