When it comes to technology segments penetrating the enterprise space, RPA and AI are right at the top of the list. The fast-expanding uptake is down to its ability to increase productivity. Growth-wise they have a lot in common. Together, they can revolutionise the way that industries’ core functions are handled and processed, thereby transforming companies through effective digitalisation strategies that are centred on AI and RPA.

Individualised Utilisation of RPA & AI

Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is software that is focused on helping the human workforces in organisations by automating mundane and repetitive tasks. This software (or ‘Digital Workers’) focuses on rules-based tasks and when implemented correctly, can eliminate human-error, increase productivity and efficiency. Digital Workers relieve human workers from time-consuming and non-value added work. However, RPA is not capable of decision-making, so must be programmed to complete its tasks.

On the other hand, Artificial Intelligence (AI) is capable of decision making and can simulate what a human worker can do, based on predetermined rules or from data sets, from which it can make cognitive decisions. Unlike RPA, AI can help companies in analysing situations and optimising tasks. This gives companies an idea of where they can improve whereas RPA is normally implemented to improve the efficiency of certain areas and will not provide ideas of other ways to improve. However, RPA can help to sort and segment data in coherent groups, which enables AI to take over.

What RPA and AI Can Do Together

Some companies that are either just beginning their digital transformation journeys or individuals that are new to (either) RPA or AI, may be confused about which one to choose or whether to use them in combination? Well, the answer depends on a company’s requirements and objectives. As mentioned, RPA automate tasks and AI helps in analysing and optimising tasks. They can work wonders when combined, helping to drive the end-to-end business processes.

When AI and RPA are combined, the user then possesses software that can understand documents, identify areas for improvement, complete tasks and handle semi-structured and/or unstructured data. AI can work as a backbone for RPA and help digital workers to accomplish tasks by identifying the areas and processes that will benefit most from automation, as well as making decisions that enable RPA to come back into the picture. In a sense, where RPA (alone) may previously have led to a Digital Worker that needs decision-making inputs to sit idle until prompted with a direction from its Human Colleague, AI makes decisions, that prevent bottle-necks. And RPA can be used to compile, read and source data for AI to interpret and use.

For example, hospitals can use digital workers to copy the patient’s data/symptoms from multiple systems and compile all that data together. AI can then interpret the data provided by the digital worker and can give an advanced analysis of the patient’s symptoms and, based on other similar patient data, even predict any future illness. This process can be used to help every business to think, learn and provide predictions, which can be a very helpful tool for any business, providing many opportunities.

The Final Verdict

Using both AI and RPA together will help companies as they can help to make the most out of their data, whilst also automating the repetitive, process-driven tasks that handle and store such data. These types of processes can quickly become circular, wherein they require little human intervention if implemented correctly. After analysing such results the company can use this as a base to plan their future strategies in other areas of their business.