About 52% of Fortune 500 companies have disappeared since 2000. Companies like OfficeMax, Gateway, and Kmart have been disrupted by digital natives with more efficient business models, greater agility, and superior customer experience. Digital-native companies have had the luxury of starting in a digital world, employing processes and systems that can more readily be automated to provide customer value. Those that aren’t digital natives are under increasing pressure to transform to provide more value and elevate the customer experience – faster, more convenient than ever before.
A successful digital transformation strategy requires leveraging technologies that will elevate customer experiences. But most enterprise companies have siloed front-office, back-office, and employee-productivity systems. This makes it difficult to get a comprehensive view of a customer to provide a relevant experience. When a customer calls their wireless provider to upgrade their plan, it’s expected that the service desk immediately knows what the customer has purchased, their usage rate, and how are they using their data. Without this information, the service desk cannot match the right plan to solve their customers’ needs. Getting this information into the hands of the service desk requires connecting back-office with front-office applications.
The average enterprise has over 1,500 applications, making connectivity a huge hurdle. Companies can simplify data sharing between disparate systems either via APIs or through intelligent automation.
APIs are pathways between systems that can be triggered to share data and take action based on that data. But only 20% of enterprise applications have robust APIs. Furthermore, many processes require complex decision making to handle exceptions. That’s where intelligent automation comes into play.
Intelligent Robotic Process Automation (RPA) can connect any system without powerful APIs and take action and manage exceptions even when handling unstructured data. Companies employing both are at a strategic advantage. By leveraging the speed and resiliency of API data transmission and the ubiquitous system access and AI-based decision making of intelligent automation, companies can turn information into action.
Successful digital transformation requires participation from software developers, IT, and business users who live and breathe the applications they use every day. APIs were built for IT and software developers to create applications around data residing in disparate systems. Intelligent automation was built for business users, or citizen developers, to help them speed the completion of repetitive and time-consuming processes. IT and business leaders aim to fully leverage these technologies to streamline operations, eliminate errors, and deliver more value.
That’s why we partnered with MuleSoft, the integration platform provider for building application networks, to transform information into action. Together, RPA and APIs enable the direct infusion of AI into automation projects without adding a significant burden on developers. We are collaborating to integrate our platforms so that developers can seamlessly call RPA bots from MuleSoft’s Anypoint Platform to perform manual steps in a business process or access legacy or unstructured data from other applications.
For example, in enterprises with large volumes of invoice processing needs, a MuleSoft workflow can call an Automation Anywhere bot to extract data from invoices coming from suppliers. A bot can sift through supplier emails in a mailbox, pull out the invoice attachments, extract the invoice information from the document, and pass the data back to MuleSoft.
Similarly, developers on the Automation Anywhere platform can easily call a MuleSoft API from the Enterprise A2019 workbench. Developers can now easily tap into MuleSoft’s long list of connectors to connect to system APIs when tackling large volumes of data in use cases such as data warehousing, master data management, or simply interacting with NoSQL databases.
For MuleSoft integration developers, this means less custom code and ease of maintenance while leveraging an API-led approach. For RPA developers, while building bots, they now have access to millions of endpoints using existing MuleSoft connectors without having to understand the underlying complexities of the APIs. And for customer support teams, it means faster access to comprehensive customer data.
To provide superior customer experiences, get early access to RPA Bots for Mule 4, the Automation Anywhere connector to MuleSoft. Your participation and input will help us ensure that our collaboration with MuleSoft addresses all your needs.
Aziz is a senior director of corporate & business development at Automation Anywhere. As a product veteran, he has a track record of driving innovations in digital transformation and enterprise data integration spaces.