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RPA in Fintech: How to streamline financial services for desired scale and value

If you are in Fintech and don’t need automation, you are either killing your business or thinking it’s plateaued (which is the same.) More efficient, cost-saving, and smart automation is something that leading companies are working on relentlessly to outpace their competitors. Find out what robotic process automation (RPA) is, how it differs from cognitive automation, and what RPA use cases are trending in Fintech.

What robotic process automation is

RPA technology helps automate repetitive, basic tasks using bots that mimic human actions. They can quickly and accurately interact with digital systems, analyze data, and navigate apps just like a human user would. With RPA, you can delegate to bots data entry and manipulation, report generation, transaction processing, etc. 

How RPA impacts the Fintech industry

By leveraging robotics, Fintech companies can boost their operations and speed up digital transformation. Add to it more efficient services to clients and customers, and you improve your chances of gaining a competitive edge in the industry.

Now, how do you achieve that with RPA?

1. Companies use robotics to automate routine tasks, put workflows on autopilot, and scale operations, all while keeping the number of employees the same and reducing operational costs. For instance, bots can generate audit trails and logs to prove regulatory compliance, helping organizations meet standards and avoid penalties. 

2. When complying with regulatory requirements or dealing with financial data, accuracy is king. RPA helps increase accuracy and consistency for internal and external role tasks, reducing the number of errors and the risk of non-compliance. 

3. By automating customer-facing processes, RPA helps drive customer satisfaction and improve retention. Bots can handle financial account reviews, loan applications, and transaction processing. 

4. If your company relies on a mix of systems, RPA can help bridge the legacy and the modern parts. Robotics streamline data exchange, handle reconciliation tasks, and help keep everything in sync. They can get on well with legacy software by utilizing their user interfaces and APIs, or collecting data via screen scraping. 

5. By offloading routine tasks to RPA, employees can use the freed-up resources for higher-value activities. Greater efforts on strategic planning, problem-solving, and customer engagement translate to business growth.

All of the above elevate efficiency and cut operational costs, driving business growth and competitive advantage for Fintech companies. Also, RPA implementation facilitates faster time-to-market and helps achieve 24/7 availability.

It’s important to understand that RPA isn’t a silver bullet: robotics provide limited decision-making and are incapable of complex analysis or judgment.

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Robotic vs. cognitive automation

Robotic automation often gets confused with cognitive automation. Understanding the differences between the two is essential to choosing the best option that suits your business needs. 

If intelligent automation was a spectrum, robotic and cognitive automation would be on the opposite ends. While their capabilities exceed those of humans in automating tasks and processes, these technologies are fundamentally different.

RPA refers to software that can be easily programmed to perform simple, routine human tasks that follow a clear sequence of steps. 

In contrast, cognitive automation is AI-powered and is as complex as to mimic human thought. Cognitive automation leverages a higher level of intelligence to perform advanced tasks.

Here’s an example. RPA can handle financial data entry into systems from spreadsheets, scanned documents, etc. Bots check and ensure data’s accuracy and quality. Cognitive automation systems take this a level up: they can analyze news articles, conversation transcripts, and social media posts to identify investor sentiment, gather financial market insights, or detect relevant trends.

Use case: RPA in financial advisory

Robotics can streamline many processes and tasks in financial advisory. 

  • It can automate data extraction and reporting queries, re-entering manually entered data into systems, and centering inputs from source systems into target systems (for instance, from a workflow to ERP). 
  • Simple decision-making like flagging exceptions or selecting response templates are something bots can handle, too.
  • You can also set up bots to transfer data between systems through user interfaces instead of complex IT interfaces.

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Also, you can vary the degree of automation for these tasks. For instance, we at INSART use attended and unattended types of bots. Attended bots require a human to start the process of financial data gathering; once the user clicks a button, then the bot starts looking for data. Unattended ones are deployed in the virtual environment (for instance, Azure) with a schedule for a bot. At a specific time, the bot is automatically activated to check if there’s any new data for processing. If there is some, it performs its task — for instance, extracts PDF files from a website to upload them to a specific destination; you can program the bot to create different destinations and upload files to them based on the contents or names of the PDFs, for various individuals, etc. If there’s no new data, the bot returns to “sleeping.”

Depending on the algorithm's complexity, an RPA developer can automate data management on a website in a day or a month. The degree of the website’s automation friendliness also affects the speed of the process. If the website is well-coded, has stable performance and UI, and loads fast, RPA development will go smoothly and intuitively. In such cases, our developers can handle RPA independently, without taking the client’s time for extra clarifications. Poorly built websites and systems surely slow down RPA development.

Use case: RPA in financial advisory

Fintechs live on (and from) data, so enhancing and streamlining data practices is something these companies must make a priority. Robotic process automation helps a lot in this: it ensures seamless execution of data extraction and processing. By leveraging RPA, companies can save time, effort, and costs on simple rule-based tasks and focus on high-value activities.

However, tasks requiring more intelligence and a human-like approach are better facilitated through cognitive automation and AI.

My team and I will be happy to power your Fintech solution with RPA. Get in touch with us, and let’s see how we can help your company level up through technology.

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