In brief, intelligent automation is a type of automation that utilises artificial intelligence, machine learning, and other advanced technologies to automate complex processes and tasks. It can mimic the output of a human performing a repetitive task across a range of business functions, helping you to automate processes and streamline [AS1] efficiency.
The finance function within a business demands a high level of accuracy, responsibility and timeliness. Whether it is generating financially-driven insights or simply ensuring AP functions are paid on time and are free of errors, the tasks carried out by the finance team can often be manual, repetitive and subject to human error.
So, how can intelligent automation help you transform your finance function, and allow it to deliver the greatest value to the business?
Finance departments are under immense pressure to do more with less. To remain competitive, they must ensure they are agile and reactive, and to this end, many businesses are looking to implement new financial strategies to boost efficiency and productivity.
However, many of these fail simply because issues with the back-end remain unaddressed. Intelligent automation offers a cost-effective way to address these pain points without a time and resource intensive overhaul of all IT infrastructure or a costly and complicated IT integration.
The power of intelligent automation lies in its ability to interface with applications just as a human might, but without the need for breaks and downtime. Utilising this power means that, with the help of intelligent automation, tasks that might take a human weeks or months to complete can be done in a fraction of the time.
There are multiple functions within finance that simply eat up the time of human employees, one of the biggest being payroll. Whether this is due to data from HR systems being manual and not time-efficient, or simply being outsourced to a third party and therefore adding an additional layer of complexity, intelligent automation helps to streamline this vital function.
The finance function is replete with tasks that require minimal skill but are nonetheless high-stress for the employees engaged with them. Intelligent automation across these functions can have a dramatic impact on employee experience, enabling them to leave mundane, burdensome tasks to a “digital worker” while they focus on high-value, high-skill tasks that require a human touch.
With many organisations still using legacy ERP systems when it comes to finance infrastructure, they are likely to have no automation and very basic workflow management. This, combined with a mix of formal and informal processes that only a handful of employees may fully understand, often results in inefficient or even dysfunctional procedures.
Mapping and automating these finance processes with intelligent automation means the information environment is not only simplified, but also streamlined. Improving poor processes when it comes to accounts payable and accounts receivable, for example, dramatically impacts workflow management, and ensures payments are made on time, and these benefits can be rolled out to nearly every core process of the finance function.
Many finance departments suffer from the effects of overwhelming amounts of unconnected data from various documents, spreadsheets, and systems. Extracting meaningful, actionable data from these huge reservoirs of information to facilitate financial functions is a challenge for many organisations.
Intelligent automations are able to interface across multiple systems, synthesizing them into a workable whole, and extracting meaningful data more readily than a human worker. Not only does this remove what is often a very manual, time-consuming process, but all but eliminates the risk of human error and inaccurate reporting.
Intelligent automation offers a powerful and cost-effective way to future proof your finance function, and free human employees from repetitive and non-productive tasks. Implementing this kind of automation not only saves time and resources in the long-run, but also provides a solution that does not require an extensive rehaul of IT infrastructure.
Interested in finding out more? Request a free demo of intelligent automation solution, Niico, today.
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