Interaction of Business Process Outsourcing and Software Automation
Many companies outsource parts of their business processes to third parties - classic Business Process Outsourcing (BPO). Alternatively, they introduce a strong internal separation between application and operating level. For the service providers involved, this means in any case that the processes to be executed are technically remote, which makes it difficult to implement the processes efficiently. "Not the only challenge, because BPO is in danger of losing touch, especially in international competition. The potential for further development of the technology lies in the connection of Robotic Process Automation, RPA for short," explains Alexander Steiner, Chief Solution Architect of meta:proc GmbH.
BPO needs RPA
In general, BPO serves to relieve employees of tasks that are important for the functioning of the company as such but do not reflect its core competence. A widely established example is payroll accounting, which is often performed by external third parties. The focus here is on a holistic increase in efficiency. But the fact is: In times of globalization, companies are under great international competitive pressure and the development of new technologies is advancing inexorably. "Classic business process outsourcing must keep up with the times if it is not to be completely displaced by technological innovations," says Steiner. For providers in particular, such as service or call centers, automation should therefore be high on the agenda when implementing the processes assigned to them - if only to avoid the risk of becoming obsolete due to digitization programs of their clients. In addition, automation of the corresponding business processes can lead to significant increases in efficiency and productivity. By using RPA, workflows can be executed five to ten times faster and resource consumption can be reduced by up to 37 percent. With the provider's new services in the form of self-controlling software, companies no longer only have the opportunity to increase productivity within two years, but also to achieve an increase of 40 to 140 percent in the same time.
Breaking down barriers
Due to the already limited access to backend systems, RPAs are in many cases the only sensible solution to implement the efforts of service providers to expand their offerings, since software automation does not need these accesses per se. However, despite the flexibility and minimally invasive approach of the automation solution, many third-party providers struggle with the challenge of being able to use systems on which they work only remotely. "Terminal applications such as Citrix, for example, are popular technologies that offer the client an appropriate level of security, but often still make life difficult for the service provider with regard to RPAs today," says the Chief Solution Architect. Gradually, integrations are being used here that make it possible to support such environments natively. "This is an urgent necessity, because only if BPO and RPA go hand in hand can the outsourcing of business processes to third party providers continue in the future," the meta:proc expert concludes.