Manual data processing, especially that involving numbers, has a higher scope of human error. The process is not just time-consuming but is quite expensive as well. The effective solution to the problem is RPA, robotic process automation in finance. Financial institutions have been using RPA for finance and accounting processes for quite some time now. The technology is evolving quickly and can handle data more efficiently than humans while saving huge costs.
The figure mentioned above clearly shows the effectiveness of implementing RPA in the financial sector. As against manual processes, the automated processes run smoothly.
The effectiveness of RPA in finance can also be gauged by the fact that about 80% of the finance leaders have either implemented or are planning to implement robotic process automation in their business processes, as per Gartner.
Hyperautomation will not be the wrong word to describe RPA in finance and accounting as it can perform up to 30 times more work than a human. The technology has evolved from performing simple individual tasks of automation to processing full-fledged automated reports, data analysis, and forecasting while interacting with other technologies.
Along with saving costs on human resources, by handling huge, recurring data-related tasks, the same can be utilized in a better way with a focus on more meaningful outputs.
RPA Use Cases in Finance
Let us explore some of the RPA use cases in finance that surely will be worth the investment you will make.
Fintech organizations are often heavily involved in cash inflows and outflows. The repeated task of creating purchase orders for different clients and forwarding them, getting the approval is not just monotonous but is prone to mistakes if done manually.
Processing the same through RPA integrated with AI will not only eliminate the possibility of errors but will smartly capture the data to create P’s. With the automated system in place, an automated approval matrix can be created and forwarded for approvals without human intervention. Simple, effective, quick, and cost-saving are some of the most obvious benefits of RPA in finance for PO processing.
Invoice processing too is a repetitive and tedious task, especially if the invoices are received or generated in varied formats.
As a customer-centric organization, financial organizations struggle to raise correct invoices in the client-required formats on a timely basis. On top of that, the approval matrix and process may lead to a lot of rework in terms of correcting the formats and data. Automation can take up the tedious repetitive task while ensuring the correctness and forwarding the invoices to the aligned approving authority in no time.
Overall accounts payables and accounts receivables can be wholly automated with an RPA in the finance industry and automated invoicing software. The maker and checker process can be almost eliminated as the machine can perform the tasks of matching the invoices with the relevant POs.
This is a critical business process that might take up a significant number of business hours for the accountant or team of accountants to ensure the balance comparisons are accurate. Back and forth references and logins required into different systems require the eye of a hawk to ensure no errors were made and the numbers are compared accurately.
To understand it better, an organization with different functions and sub-companies follows different structures and processes in maintaining its accounts. Bringing all of them into a common format of processing might not be possible based on the business requirements and client needs. However, the central team faces challenges in reconciling the accounts of all the departments/sub-companies. The process is tedious, error-prone, and repetitive. Implementing RPA can bring relief to the central team.
This is the primary benefit of RPA for accounting. RPA bots make the task quick and consistent by auditing and reconciling the data at every step and process with the minimal human intervention of incorporating the basic elements of these tasks. Human intervention is only needed when the data reflects misalignments.
Travel & Expenses
Raising travel requests, checking the expense category, required approval, required supporting documents, etc. eats up a lot of time for the accounts team that may even delay the processing of the same.
Ensuring that the expense records are as per the company policies and creating expense reports becomes easier with the implementation of RPA in corporate finance. Managing reimbursements can be done on a timely basis by automating the process. Policy violations and data discrepancies can be intimated to the concerned individuals/departments with the help of automated alerts.
Collating data for tax calculations, creating tax basis, preparing reports, etc, when automated and performed with the help of RPA bots reduces repeated task redundancies and inaccuracies that might happen while performing the same manually. Digits and figures are required to be accurate to the decimal places to eliminate mismatches in the reconciliation and data processing.
Although most businesses run their process through tax processing software, there is still a significant amount of manual work involved. Most of this manual work can be done using RPA bots to reduce time and costs while ensuring better accuracy and adherence to compliance parameters.
Budget Planning & Forecasting
Fetching details with the help of RPA bots from various reports and systems with accuracy will help in creating the variance reports providing various angles to view and analyze data. Based on historical data and current information, comparison and trends can be drawn upon that are the proven successful ways to forecast and plan your business.
Keeping a track of business transactions and profit and loss on a daily basis helps you plan ahead of time and warns you of the issues on time. Being proactive in managing and handling these issues saves you from losses. The changes can be implemented to correct and improvise the existing methods and processes of business.
Banks and financial institutions are required to generate extensive reports that reflect performance, statistics, and trends that involve huge data. The data extracted manually will be tedious and unreliable. However, robotic process automation in finance and accounting facilitates gathering data from different sources and data present in different formats. Collating, reporting, and analyzing this data leads to better forecasting and planning.
Payroll processing is one of the most important processes for any business. Timely and accurate processing leads to building a happier workforce that, in turn, leads to the building of a satisfied customer base and a successful business.
With financial institutions having their presence in multiple locations across the globe, capturing the productivity, attendance, and tax regime as per the geographical location becomes tedious. Collecting such data and performing calculations is prone to have errors that might lead to dissatisfied employees. RPA provides you with a breath of fresh air by automating the whole process. Timely and correct calculations lead to happier employees.
Performing the tedious tasks of timesheet validations, deductions calculations, tax calculations, overtime payouts, etc. can be managed by RPA bots with zero errors and delays.
Real-World Examples of Companies Using RPA in Finance
Keybank: One of the leading commercial banks, Keybank adapted RPA at an early stage to improve efficiency in an extremely realistic manner. Account receivable that involves multiple steps of repetitive tasks of generating invoices and POs has been automated. Although the bank’s key focus is normally the payments, the automation of accounts receivable makes the payments process smooth and error-free from step 1 till the last one.
Radius Financial Group: A mortgage process is a lengthy paperwork and verification process. Coordination between the mortgage company and the client for the required documentation eats up most of the time of the mortgage agent. A single mistake either by the bank employee or the client can further delay the whole process. RPA implementation takes this complex activity of searching and verifying the details from different data sources, thus reducing the processing time by 80%. With RPA implementation, Radius Financial Group could maintain the business pace even during the tough pandemic period.
Societe Generale Bank, Brazil: Being the leader in financial services could become possible by automating some of the tedious repetitive tasks through robotic process automation. The data used in the financial services industry is huge and complex. However, regular automated reports help the employees to be better informed and prepared to provide par excellence customer service. The positive value-added towards enhancing the customer experience has shown a significant shift.
Zurich Insurance: Having their presence in different countries across the globe, their challenge was to follow the geography-specific regulations. With the help of the implementation of RPA, they could segregate the common and general policies that could be generated through a robotic automatic process saving a huge amount of time. The underwriters could get ample time to review more complex policies. The outcome was surprising as they could save approximately 50% of the processing cost and of course time.
Auditing Made Easy with RPA in Finance & Accounting
Auditing becomes an integral part of the processes mentioned above as the RPA bots never miss any step, even by mistake, thus reducing the possibility of compliance issues that might crop up in the future.
By integrating robotic automation with Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, RPA tools can interact with a wide range of internal applications like enterprise resource planning (ERP) and customer relationship management (CRM). This integration helps in reducing the processing time by providing accurate data analysis, triggering automated responses to the customers, and interacting with other internal systems.
A lean, cost-efficient team can focus on better customer service and improvise on enhancing a better customer experience.
Such integration with artificial intelligence and machine learning boosts the power of RPA. Any minor changes in the algorithms can be easily managed by RPA which would break down the automation process otherwise. Fetching detailed reports, patterns, and historical and current data analysis helps in the process of decision making.
To overcome the workflow bottlenecks, and possible human errors, get started with AI, ML-enabled robotic process automation in finance and accounting. This will also help in eliminating the inefficiencies that lead to poor customer service. Repeated and monotonous tasks keep the employees disengaged. With the implementation of robotic process automation, a notable change can be observed in the following areas of business:
- Analyze customer behavior regularly with the help of data and reports created by RPA bots to drive sustainable growth.
- Improve/boost the operational efficiency of the team by eliminating the monotonous tasks and leaving the same to RPA bots and get real-time data analysis
- Keep your customers informed about various critical and new features of your products and services and enhance the customer experience.
- Automation will also lead to a reduction in financial fraud and proactively flag instances of potential fraud.
- Ensure data compliance throughout the process.
How can Appinventiv Help with RPA in Finance?
Appinventiv is one of the fastest-growing financial software development companies globally. With a strong team of over 800 tech enthusiasts, we provide RPA solutions that can automate your Fintech business processes seamlessly. Our team takes up every step from conceptualization to deployment with the utmost rigor and enthusiasm and ensures we exceed your expectations.
One such example is the solution that we provided to a leading bank in Europe by automating their banking process using machine learning techniques and artificial intelligence. Our efforts led to a 35% reduction in the bank’s manual processes, which also led to a 20% reduction in manpower costs.
Get in touch with our experts now for that perfect RPA in finance solution for your business!
Q. Why is RPA important in finance?
A. The importance of RPA is growing as it can effectively handle tasks of repetitive nature that are prone to cause errors and are time-consuming when performed manually. You can have a lean, cost-efficient team by reducing the operational costs while ensuring high compliance standards and minimal to zero human errors.
Automating most of the mundane tasks of inventory management, regular account payables and receivables, record keeping, payroll processing, and report generations can be reduced by utilizing the human resources for more strategic roles of planning and client relations. It is much easier to manage the data and systems with the steep and substantial growth of the company.
Q. What is the future of RPA in Finance?
A. RPA bots are expected to completely take over the transactional tasks as the basics. By integrating RPA with machine learning and artificial intelligence, complex and strategic transactions will also be automated. With the future of developing bots with no/low coding, the RPA implementation will be much more efficient and cost-effective.
Further integration with the RPA marketplace will enhance the capabilities as no single provider can provide all functionalities to integrate and automate various processes that the company might use.
Q. What is the impact of RPA in Account Payables?
A. Account payable is a critical component of finance and accounting. As the tasks involved are repetitive in nature, it is time-consuming and error-prone. RPA integrated with ML and AI can take up the tedious and monotonous task of performing repetitive tasks of generating invoices and POs. This will keep a track of comparing the raised invoices against POs keeping the audit in place on a real-time basis.