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How Robotic Process Automation (RPA) Helps With Talent Shortages

RPA

Imagine a world where your company is able to reduce the number of repetitive, soul-crushing jobs your staff completes every single week. These mundane tasks are the ones that oftentimes hold up sales, anger customers, and cause many more frustrations that can definitely be avoided. Think about your house even for example, do you have an Alexa performing little tasks for you just by saying a few words? That is a prime example of the ability to use technology to make our lives easier. Why not incorporate this ease into our workplaces? On top of the ease that technology can bring to companies, it can also relieve a great deal of the stress staffing shortages many manufacturers are facing.


            Now that businesses are starting to pull out of the pandemic, companies are falling into one of two categories; companies that did initial layoffs and are now seeing sales slowly increasing, and companies that are thriving and overwhelmed by increasing demand. These two scenarios have the same dilemma, talent shortages.

As a leader in the organization, we know that staff bandwidth is top of mind. You want to make sure the work is getting completed efficiently, but it can be difficult to know when you need to hire another full-time employee. If you’re a fan of shark tank, you’ve probably heard the phrase, “there has to be a better way!” And that’s where Robotic Process Automation (RPA) can step in and assist.

            The manufacturing industry was one of the initial industries that adopted robotics for production lines, carrying out all of the everyday operations at the facility. These companies have been using robots to assemble products and package them while monitoring quality. Automated efficiency goes beyond solely the production lines, and many companies are looking into RPA as a chance to improve their back-office operations as well. Before we go any further, let’s discuss what exactly RPA is.

RPA is software that when combined with business operations automates activities, minimizes human errors, and dramatically improves productivity. Currently, many companies are experiencing talent shortages as the unemployment crisis continues to unfold. This crisis makes it extremely difficult to find staff in order to maintain the business. How are companies solving this staffing shortage?

For some, the answer is RPA.

            Automated processes help companies reduce the workload that once needed a human to complete. As mentioned earlier, RPA reduces the mundane, repetitive tasks that can take up a lot of time and helps free up your human workforce. Think about your typical work day; I bet there are tasks you do every single day that are rule-based and could easily be passed off to a robot. Technology has come a long way from where it started. It is not as crazy as it used to be to think that a robot can replace a human’s position in some jobs, but that is the world we are living in now. Many manufacturing companies face a number of issues in terms of operations and processing that unfortunately allows for work to be dumped on administration departments and the cycle continues. This is where RPA comes into play. Any type of work that is able to provide a clear picture of production can be trained to be done through robots. That eliminates a lot of the need for staffing so if your company is short staffed, RPA represents a practical, cost-effective solution.

            Another area of the business that can benefit from RPA is the customer service department. Customer service is a crucial part of any business, but can some of the tasks needed to be done be able to be completed by a robot? Absolutely. RPA can be employed to keep the company updated regarding whether or not its employees are maintaining contact with the customers. They also can be trained to maintain schedules, delivery dates and to keep the company in the loop if there are any customer complaints that need to be taken care of. When an employee does these tasks, it requires them to work through several systems in order to get all the requested information by the customer. On the flip side of that, when using RPA, the robot can reach multiple pieces of information from a single source which saves a lot of time and effort. These examples are only scratching the surface of the possibilities that are available for RPA to help your company. The opportunities are endless.

            RPA helps companies reduce waste and mistakes that are commonly made. When a human is doing a task, there is room for error but when a robot is doing that same task, the chance for error is significantly smaller. With the errors reduced, consequently, the amount of waste is also a lot smaller. The robots are able to fix certain hurdles that companies face such as manual lapses by automating scheduling. In a manufacturing setting, shift change for employees is typically down time where work is not getting completed. Transferring that work over to a robot eliminates the down time because there is no need for a shift change. Another feature about the robots is that they are able to be productive 24/7 if needed or wanted. Being able to be productive for this length of time can substantially increase the revenue being brought in for the company. If you think about it, robots don’t need a lunch break or to go home at the end of their shift like humans do.

            Trying to hire, let alone find new employees to hire can be an expensive task. Part of that can be minimized by implementing RPA instead. Picking out the mundane tasks that humans normally do for your company and replacing them with robots is going to help cut back on the expense that you would usually be spending on manual labor. So don’t worry if you aren’t able to find humans to complete those types of tasks, RPA can step in and fill that void while saving you costs at the same time. It’s a win-win!

It is understandable that businesses are worried about the staffing shortages that many are facing right now, but looking to automation to address those shortages, like many companies are already doing, can alleviate this concern. RPA is the right answer for a lot of companies for a lot of reasons. Now is the time for manufacturing organizations especially to capitalize on the extremely beneficial uses for RPA. With the unemployment rates so high and staffing shortages being so prominent, timing has never been better. Besides RPA helping with staffing shortages, there are numerous other benefits that it brings with it to help your company unlock its full potential. So, what are you waiting for?

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