Shannex Adopts Automation to Revolutionize its Employee Experience
November 7, 2023
Shannex is a leading provider of seniors’ care, service and accommodation across its 47 long-term care and retirement living communities in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Ontario.
People are at the core of Shannex’s mission, vision, and values to lead the way to better living for individuals and the communities the company serves.
Like many health care organizations in Canada, Shannex is experiencing an increased demand for health care workers and needed a solution to improve operational effectiveness to bring more employees on board in a more timely and efficient manner.
The employee onboarding process involves multiple departments and is prone to delays, manual errors, and access management challenges. These gaps did not allow new employees timely access to software tools, equipment, and EHR systems. The offboarding workflow, when an employee left or changed roles, also had similar challenges.
Shannex has partnered with Blanc Labs to develop a workflow that leverages Robotic Process Automation (RPA) to improve coordination of task between departments, track onboarding activities and timelines, and manage employee access to new employees or when their role changes.
By partnering with Blanc Labs to map the enterprise workflow across people, processes and technology systems, Shannex expects to see a significant improvement in efficiency and user experience while maintaining system security, leading to higher staff satisfaction and retention rates.
Shannex’s onboarding workflows presented an opportunity for improvement from both an employee experience and operational efficiency perspective. Manual processing of tasks and multiple stakeholders involved created a high-volume workflow characterized by delays, errors, and information-security risks.
employees had access to all the IT systems equipment they needed on their first day of work.
of new employees experienced delays of more than a week in obtaining all the equipment and system access they needed.
of new hires were less than satisfied with the technology access portion of their onboarding experience.
Solution Approach Summary
Working collaboratively with the team from Shannex, Blanc Labs has designed and implemented a user-friendly and highly configurable solution that:
Automate Pre-Defined Workflows
Allows business users to define the type of task they want to perform (Onboarding, Change of Position or Termination Process / De-Provisioning) and upload all the documents related to that specific operation quickly and easily.
Integrated Across Enterprise Systems
The solution integrates across 14 enterprise systems and automatically triggers a series of activities relating to the workflow, such as provisioning or removing access to systems and resources.
Manage Access and Adhere to Security Requirements
Streamlines the employee offboarding process by ensuring inactive staff members do not have access to enterprise resources and facilities.
Improved Efficiency and Employee Experience
The solution improves the overall quality of the onboarding process for new hires and support functions by promptly granting and managing access to new or relocated employees.
Compliance and Security Benefits
By regularly conducting audits of staff access and enforcing IT best practices Shannex is able to significantly reduce security risks.
We crafted an Onboarding/Offboarding solution leveraging tools like Active Directory for account management, Azure Active Directory for validation, Database for data retrieval, Web API and Object Repository for application interactions. We boosted efficiency and reliability using the Object Repository tool, capturing UI elements as objects in a DOM-like repository. This ensured that interactions were well managed and reliable, encouraging reusability.
UiPath Orchestator served as the control center, enabling centralized management, scheduling, and monitoring of the automation process. Real-time insights, scheduling, and tracking capabilities ensured seamless execution and continuous improvement of the automation.
Working in tandem with Orchestrator, UiPath Robot ensured efficient and monitored Onboarding/Offboarding executions.
Blanc Labs’ RPA-based workflows will reduce demands on operational, HR, IT, and business system teams by automating employee management tasks. This will free up time for business users to focus on higher-value work. Improved accuracy will ensure new employees have the necessary system and equipment access and will lead to higher staff satisfaction and better retention rates.
Our shared goal is to improve efficiency and user experience relating to employee management tasks.
Reduction in the time required for operations managers to request access to equipment/systems for new hires.
Increase in the level of satisfaction among new hires with the onboarding process.
Reduction in the time spent removing access to systems and equipment for terminations.
Increase in the proportion of new hires with access to systems equipment on their first day in the new position.
Through a strategic partnership with Blanc Labs and the CAN Health Network, Shannex is poised to revolutionize its employee onboarding and system access procedures. By integrating technologies like UiPath Apps, UiPath Robot, and UiPath Studio, Blanc Labs has delivered an impactful synergy of automation, innovation, and convenience to Shannex’s employee experience, HR , IT management, and Operations functions.
If you are interested in automating your workflows and improving employee experience, reach out to us at BlancLabs.com and let us explore how we could partner with one another. Contact us today to unlock efficiencies in your processes.
Elevate employee experience: automate, secure, and thrive.
Blanc Labs teamed up with Daylight Automation (acquired by Quadient) to overhaul the process pharmacists use to assess and treat minor ailments, at a critical inflection point for Canadians to efficiently access healthcare services.
Blanc Labs teamed up with Daylight Automation (acquired by Quadient) to overhaul the process pharmacists use to assess and treat minor ailments, at a critical inflection point for Canadians to efficiently access healthcare services.
Blanc Labs teamed up with Daylight Automation (acquired by Quadient) to overhaul the process pharmacists use to assess and treat minor ailments, at a critical inflection point for Canadians to efficiently access healthcare services.
Low-Code Tools and Automation Power Minor Ailments Program for Pharmacists
November 3, 2023
Blanc Labs teamed up with Daylight Automation (acquired by Quadient) to enable the Minor Ailments service at a major Canadian pharmacy. The team designed and deployed digital forms, automated workflows, and integrated with enterprise systems to power how pharmacists assess and treat 15 minor ailments at pharmacies across the country. This comes at a critical inflection point for Canadians needing efficient access to healthcare services.
The client knew having pharmacists fill out a paper-form for each patient would not scale across their network and would create massive headaches for data integration, workflow management, payments & billing, and information security.
With Blanc Labs support, the Pharmacy rolled out a digital workflow solution that offers patients and pharmacists a much improved experience that eliminates extra steps, ensuring accurate and timely assessments, and treatment of minor ailments.
After 6-months of Minor Ailments Service in Ontario
Prescriptions for Minor Ailments
Benefits of our Solution Approach
The low-code solution offered an integrated approach for patient booking, patient record management, managing the assessment workflow, generating the prescription, and managing the billing process on behalf of pharmacists.
Streamlined Data Collection
Allowing busy pharmacists to spend less time on administration and more time on high-value tasks, ultimately allowing them to serve patients more effectively.
Improved Data Quality & Security
By offering a dedicated tool and workflow for each minor ailment, the solution dramatically reduced the amount of manual effort and the steps required to gather and transcribe patient data at the time of the assessment.
Additionally the solution is securely integrated into the pharmacy information systems, so the data collected conforms to all health data security standards.
Superior Customer and Employee Experience
Patients can now book an appointment ahead of time or walk-in any of the pharmacy locations minimizing the time between the consult and the treatment.
Rather than having each patient fill out paper forms, the tool guides the pharmacist through a Q&A style assessment and patient documentation workflow.
Using a low-code tool allows the workflows to be updated in real-time. This means when any of the requirements of the 15 minor ailment assessment workflows change, the team can quickly update and push out the change.
As additional minor ailments are added, pharmacists will be able to conduct these assessments with minimal training or operational overhead.
Of All Community Pharmacies are Prescribing for Minor Ailments
Provinces Currently Allow Pharmacists to Prescribe for Minor Ailments
Savings to Ontario with Pharmacists Treating for 3 Minor Ailments
A Transformative Approach to Primary Care
Given that pharmacists are the most accessible health care professionals, I think minor ailments prescribing will lead to an improved pharmacist-patient relationship and a more fulfilling professional career. As medication experts, pharmacists are trained and equipped with the knowledge to practice beyond classic dispensing activities.
Providing clinical services, which allow pharmacists to use their entire range of training, is the future of pharmacy.
When it comes to minor ailments prescribing, passionate pharmacists will be invaluable and I’m hopeful that a shift will occur where these types of services become the norm1.
– Timothy Brady, Chair of Ontario Pharmacists Association
Financial Services | AI | Banking Automation | Digital Banking | Enterprise Automation
Using RPA in Banking
May 8, 2023
All banking or financial institutions can relate to the struggle of managing piles of structured and unstructured data daily. This task requires repetitive and manual effort from your employees that they could otherwise dedicate to high-value work. It can also be time-consuming and prone to errors, ultimately hampering your bank’s customer experience. Fortunately, automation technologies are proving to be a boon for the finance sector.
The finance domain is experiencing a major transformation, with banking automation and digitization at the forefront. According to a study by McKinsey, machines will handle between 10% to 25% of banking functions in the next few years, which can free up valuable time and resources for employees to focus on more strategic initiatives.
What is Robotic Process Automation (RPA)?
RPA is an automation technology governed by structured inputs and business logic. RPA in banking is a powerful tool that can automate repetitive and time-consuming tasks. It allows banks and financial institutions to gain a competitive advantage by automating routine tasks cost-effectively, fast, and without errors.
Banks, credit unions, or other financial institutions can set up robotic applications to handle tasks like capturing and analyzing information from documents, performing transactions, triggering responses, managing data, and coordinating with other digital systems. The possibilities for using RPA in finance are innumerable and can include a range of functionalities such as generating reports, sending auto emails, and even auto-decisioning.
How RPA works
Robotic Process Automation works by automating repetitive and routine tasks that are currently performed manually. Software robots, also known as ‘bots,’ are designed to mimic human actions and interactions with digital systems. These rule-based bots can be configured to perform specific tasks, such as document processing, data entry, transaction execution, complete keystrokes, and more.
Once a bot is configured, it can be triggered to run automatically or on a schedule, freeing up human resources to focus on customer service or other higher-value or strategic activities. The bot interacts with the relevant systems and applications, capturing and analyzing data, navigating systems, and automating workflows as needed.
One of the key advantages of RPA in finance is that it is non-intrusive, meaning that it operates within existing systems and processes, without requiring any changes to the underlying infrastructure. This means that no changes are made to the underlying applications. RPA bots perform tasks in a similar manner to employees- by signing into applications, entering data, conducting calculations, and logging out. They do this at the user interface or application surface layer by imitating mouse movements and the keystrokes made by employees.
This makes it easier to implement and reduces the risk of disruption to existing operations. As per Forbes, RPA usage has seen a rise in popularity in the last few years and will continue to see double-digit growth in 2023.Many people use the terms ‘RPA’ and ‘Intelligent Automation’ (IA) interchangeably. Both are banking automation technologies that improve efficiency, but are they the same?
Are RPA and Intelligent Automation the same?
No, RPA is not IA and IA is not RPA. While RPA is a rule-based approach for everyday tasks, intelligent automation uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) technologies to automate more complex and strategic processes. IA encompasses a wide range of technologies which includes RPA. IA enables organizations to automate not just manual tasks but also decision-making processes and allows for continuous improvement through self-learning.
A combination of IA and RPA can unlock the true potential of banking automation. When RPA is combined with the powers of AI, ML, and natural language processing, it dramatically increases the software’s skills to execute advanced cognitive processes like understanding speech, carrying out conversations, comprehending semi-structured tasks such as purchase orders, invoices and unstructured documents like emails, text files and images.
Thus, RPA and its combination technologies are fully capable of taking your banking and financial business to new heights.
What are the benefits of RPA in Banking?
The global RPA market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 23.4%, from $10.01 Billion in 2022 to $43.2 Billion in 2029. Evidently, more industries worldwide are realizing the importance of RPA. Here are some benefits of using RPA in banking and financial institutions.
Robots can work faster and longer than humans without taking breaks. RPA can also be scaled to meet changing business needs, making it an ideal solution for organizations that are looking to grow and expand their operations and provide additional services.
Enhanced Compliance and Risk Management
RPA can help banks and financial institutions improve their compliance and risk management processes. For example, the software can be configured to monitor transactions for potential fraud and to ensure compliance with regulatory requirements. It can also inform the bank authorities in case any anomaly is found.
Improved Customer Service
RPA can enable faster and more personalized service to customers. For example, the software can be configured to handle routine customer inquiries and transactions, reduce wait times and improving the overall customer experience.
RPA can automate repetitive and manual tasks, redirecting human resources to other higher-value and strategic activities. This can result in faster processing times, improved accuracy, and reduced costs. According to a study by Deloitte, banking institutions could save about $40 million over the first 3 years of using RPA in banking.
Better Data Management
RPA can automate the collection, analysis, and management of data, making it easier for banks and financial institutions to gain insights and make informed decisions. This means faster account opening or closing, loan and document processing, data entry, and retrieval.
Top Use Cases of RPA in Banking
RPA can be applied in several ways in the banking and finance industry. Here are some examples of RPA use cases in banking and finance:
RPA can automate the manual, repetitive tasks involved in the accounts payable process, such as vendor invoice processing, field validation, and payment authorization. RPA software in combination with Optical Character Recognition (OCR) can be configured to extract data from invoices, perform data validation, and generate payment requests, reducing the risk of errors and freeing up human resources. This system can also notify the bank in case of any errors.
Mortgage processing involves hundreds of documents that need to be gathered and assessed. RPA can streamline the mortgage application process by automating tasks such as document verification, credit checks, and loan underwriting. By using RPA to handle routine tasks, banks, and financial institutions can improve processing time, reduce the risk of errors, and enhance the overall customer experience.
According to the Federal Trade Comission (FTC), banks face the ultimate risk of forgoing money to fraud, which costs them almost $8.8 billion in revenue in 2022. This figure was 30% more than than what was lost to bank fraud in 2021 . RPA can assist in detecting potential fraud by automating the monitoring of transactions for unusual patterns and anomalies. Bots can be configured to perform real-time ‘if-then’ analysis of transaction data, flagging potential fraud cases as defined for further investigation by human analysts.
KYC (Know Your Customer)
RPA can automate the KYC onboarding process, including the collection, verification, and analysis of customer data. RPA software can be configured to handle routine tasks such as data entry, document verification, and background checks, reducing the risk of errors and faster account opening, thus resulting in enhanced customer satisfaction.
Thus, using RPA in your bank and financial institution can not only save time and money but also boost productivity. Banking automation gives you a chance to gain a competitive edge by leveraging technology and becoming more efficient.
Blanc Labs Automation Solution for Banks
Blanc Labs helps banks, credit unions, and financial institutions with their digital transformation journey by providing solutions that are RPA-based. Our services include integrating advanced automation technologies into your processes to boost efficiency and reduce the potential for errors caused by manual effort.
We offer a tailored approach that combines RPA, ML, and AI to automate complex tasks, such as mortgage processing and document processing, allowing you to conserve resources, speed up decision-making and provide quicker and improved financial services to your customers.
If your bank processes a huge amount of data everyday, we can help you. Book a discovery call with us and let us explain how we can increase the efficiency of your bank’s core functions. Our team will analyze your current processes and propose a tailor-made automation solution that can operate seamlessly and in conjunction with your existing systems.
Financial Services | AI | Banking Automation | Digital Transformation | Enterprise Automation
10 Tips to Successfully Implement RPA in Finance
April 14, 2023
Automation has taken the finance industry by storm, and for all good reasons. Banking automation technologies like Robotic Process Automation (RPA) come with the promise of streamlining processes and increasing efficiency.
According to Forbes, RPA has the potential to transform the way finance functions, from reducing manual errors to freeing up valuable resources. To help you maximize the benefits of RPA in finance, we’ve put together a list of 10 tips for successful implementation. But first, let’s take a step back and explore what RPA is.
What is Robotic Process Automation (RPA)?
RPA is the use of software robots to automate routine and repetitive tasks like document processing, freeing up employees to focus on strategic activities that can lead to better customer service or innovations that could meet customer expectations.
The bots are programmed to follow specific rules and procedures to complete a task, just like an employee. They can interact with various software applications and systems, such as spreadsheets and databases, to collect and process data. The bots can also make decisions, trigger responses, and communicate with other systems and software.
When a task is triggered, the bot performs it automatically, eradicating the scope of errors that may be produced through manual processes. The process is monitored and managed by a central control system, allowing adjustments and updates to be made as needed.
Think of RPA as a digital workforce, working tirelessly in the background to complete tasks that would otherwise take hours to complete. With RPA in finance, your financial institution can increase efficiency, reduce costs, and improve the accuracy of its processes.
The Use of RPA in Banking Automation
There are many ways in which RPA can be used in banking automation. Here are some of them:
Customer Service Automation
RPA is capable of automating routine customer service tasks such as account opening, balance inquiries, and transaction processing, allowing bank employees to focus on more complex customer needs.
RPA in banking and finance can streamline the loan processing workflow by automating repetitive tasks such as document collection and verification, credit score analysis, and loan decision-making.
Fraud Detection and Prevention
In 2022 alone, banks and financial institutions lost $500K to fraud. Technologies like RPA can analyze vast amounts of data to detect and prevent fraud in real-time, improving the accuracy and speed of fraud detection. It may also report any suspected fraud to the banking authorities as soon as it is discovered.
KYC and AML Compliance
Verification and compliance document processing can eat up a major share of your institution’s resources. RPA can automate the process of collecting, verifying, and analyzing customer information, helping banks to comply with KYC (Know Your Customer) and AML (Anti-Money Laundering) regulations.
Back Office Operations
RPA can automate various back-office tasks such as data entry, reconciliation, report generation, monthly closing, and management reports, freeing up employees to focus on more strategic initiatives.
Manual data entry in payment processing can lead to manual errors and longer processing time. RPA can automate the payment processing workflow, including payment initiation, authorization, and settlement, reducing the risk of errors and improving efficiency.
Banks and financial institutions are constantly at risk from various sources. RPA in finance can help institutions identify, assess, and manage risks by automating data collection, analysis, and reporting, improving the accuracy and speed of risk assessments.
Internal Compliance Monitoring
RPA can automate the process of monitoring and reporting on compliance with internal policies and regulations, reducing the risk of non-compliance and improving overall compliance management.
The potential of RPA in banking and finance is unlimited. When combined with Intelligent Automation technologies, RPA can leverage Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) to provide more intelligent process automation. While the technology in itself is efficient, financial institutions must know how to implement it for maximized benefit.
10 Tips for Successfully Implementing RPA in Finance
According to the Deloitte Global RPA survey, 53% of organizations who took part in the survey have already begun their RPA implementation. The number is expected to rise to 72% over the next year. Entering the RPA race can be quick, but managing and scaling it is a different ball game. Before getting started with automation initiatives, it is important to consider the following tips.
While RPA might seem useful to rejuvenate all of your systems and processing, it is important to consider the business impact and start small. Beginning with a smaller project, for example, a single process or department can help build momentum and demonstrate the benefits of RPA. It also allows the organization to gain experience and develop a better understanding of the technology before scaling up.
Define Clear Goals
The key to successful RPA implementation rests in your goals. Decide what you want to achieve with RPA in consultation with your IT department. Having a clear understanding of the goals and objectives of the RPA implementation will ensure that resources are allocated appropriately and that the project stays on track. Aim for specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) goals.
Engaging stakeholders, such as the management, finance employees, and IT, can help build better design and smoother change management for the RPA implementation. It also ensures that the RPA system is well-integrated across departments and addresses the needs and concerns of all stakeholders.
When a financial institution leverages too many bots to automate processes, it results in a pile of data. They may be tempted to use ML on the data and create a chatbot to make customer queries easier. However, it can lead to a poorly planned ML project. Thus, a thorough assessment of the processes is critical to ensure that the RPA implementation does not get sidetracked. This assessment should include an analysis of the tasks, inputs, outputs, and stakeholders involved in the process.
Choose the Right Tools
Selecting the right RPA tools and technology is critical to the success of the implementation. Decide the mix of automation technologies your institution requires before reaching out to a vendor. Factors to consider include the cost, scalability, and ease of use , as well as its ability to integrate with other systems and applications.
Define Roles and Responsibilities
Clearly defining the roles and responsibilities of the RPA team, including project governance, testers, and users, is important to ensure that everyone knows what is expected of them. Remember that automation is a gradual process, and your employees will still need to interfere if it is not properly automated.
Ensure Data Security
Protecting sensitive data and customer information is a key concern in finance. RPA needs to be implemented in such a way that data security remains unaffected. Discuss with your vendor about strong security measures to ensure that data is protected and that the confidentiality of customer information is maintained.
Plan for Scalability
There are thousands of processes in banks and financial institutions that can use automation. Thus, the RPA implementation should be planned with scalability in mind so that the technology and processes can be scaled up as needed. This helps to ensure that the RPA can be combined with AI and ML technologies as necessary and the implementation remains relevant in the long term.
Monitor and Evaluate Performance
Continuously monitoring and evaluating the performance of the RPA bots is critical to ensure that they are operating effectively and efficiently. Also, do not forget to keep HR in the loop so that employees are informed and trained about the changing processes and how to use them in a timely manner. Regular evaluations should be conducted to identify areas for improvement and to make adjustments as needed.
Foster a Culture of Innovation
Encouraging a culture of innovation and experimentation can help to ensure that the organization is prepared for the future. Consult your IT department and automate your entire development lifecycle to protect your bots from disappearing after a major update. Invest in a center of excellence that can create business cases, measure ROI and cost optimization and track progress against goals.
Implementation Automation with Blanc Labs
At Blanc Labs, we understand that every financial and banking institution has unique needs and challenges when it comes to RPA implementation. That’s why we offer tailor-made RPA solutions to ensure seamless implementation for our clients.
Our RPA systems are designed to be flexible and scalable, allowing our clients to start small and grow as needed. We provide end-to-end support, from process assessment and design to implementation and ongoing assistance, to ensure that our clients realize the full benefits of RPA.
Booking a free consultation with us is the first step toward successful RPA implementation. Our team of experts work closely with each client to understand their specific requirements and goals to build a customized RPA solution to meet their needs.
Modern businesses rely on automation to reduce costs and improve efficiency, but how can banks use automation? In this article, we explain the most common use cases of banking automation.
What is Banking Automation?
Banking automation involves handing over repetitive business processes in financial institutions like banks and credit unions to technologies like robotic process automation (RPA), artificial intelligence (AI), and machine learning (ML).
Why Banks Need Intelligent Automation
As a banking professional, you know that a good chunk of your daily tasks is repetitive and mundane. Banking automation eliminates the need for manual work, freeing up your time for tasks that require critical thinking.
Here are seven reasons why banks needs intelligent automation:
Better Customer Experience
Faster Mortgage Application Processing
Accurate Report Generation
Anti-Money Laundering Prevention
Audits and Compliance
Faster Decision Making
Below we dive deeper into banking automation use cases so you can get a closer look at how automation can transform your workflow.
1. Customer Experience
A robust Customer Experience has never been more important. As the world moves online, you’ll need to re-engineer your Customer Experience to make it friction free, faster and more efficient.
Consider a customer’s first experience with the customer onboarding process. If this isn’t a painless experience, you risk turning away a customer in the first interaction.
Sure, you might need to invest some money to improve the customer experience and make it seamless and efficient, but the potential ROI is excellent. Think about it. Automation will eliminate much of the manual and low-value in-person interaction, saving your sales reps plenty of time to focus on running effective sales campaigns.
Automating processes reduce the potential for errors, allowing you to onboard customers faster. Automation also reduces costs because it eliminates the manual labor and paperwork associated with customer onboarding.
Moreover, your customers will be able to use their accounts faster, which improves customer experience. As a McKinsey report explains:
“Automation and artificial intelligence, already an important part of consumer banking, will penetrate operations far more deeply in the coming years, delivering benefits not only for a bank’s cost structure, but for its customers.”
Most banks perform KYC (Know Your Customer) by manually verifying customer details. The problem? Manual verification can take plenty of hours.
The KYC process doesn’t end at verification. You must manage KYC documents for a long time to comply with regulatory requirements. Using automation in banking operations can help free up the hours you spend on manual verification.
Moreover, automation also eliminates the risk of human error. By eliminating room for error, automation ensures improved customer experience, increased quality assurance, and the number of cases processed each month, according to a McKinsey study.
3. Mortgage Application Processing
Mortgage application processing involves plenty of paperwork. Manually checking details on each document is time-consuming and leaves room for error. On the other hand, intelligent document processing (IDP) helps streamline document management.
Remember those desks full of paperwork? That’s a thing of the past. Modern banks use IDP to manage documents digitally. IDP helps automate the generation of customer risk profiles and mortgage document processing, reducing processing time to a few days.
An Accenture study found that 47% of customers prefer opening a new bank account online using a computer, while 37% prefer using the bank’s app or website.
The shifting consumer preferences point to a future where loan requests and processing are online and automated. Now is a great time to prepare your bank for that future.
4. Report Generation
All financial institutions need to generate reports for various purposes. For example, you might need to generate a report to show quarterly performance or transaction reports for a major client.
RPA can help generate reports automatically. The system can auto-fill details into a report and prepare an error-free report within seconds. An automated system can perform various other operations as well, such as extracting data from internal or external systems and fact-checking the reports.
Maintaining compliance is expensive but less so than being non-compliant. For example, banks must ensure data accuracy when producing loan facility letters. However, instead of requiring employees to spend time meticulously verifying customer data, you can use intelligent document processing to save time and guarantee data accuracy.
Banking automation can help you save a good amount of money you currently spend on maintaining compliance. With automation, you can create workflows that satisfy compliance requirements without much manual intervention. These workflows are designed to automatically create audit trails so you can track the effectiveness of automated workflows and have compliance data to show when needed.
For example, you can set up a system to auto-freeze compromised accounts. Once the account is frozen, RPA can automatically complete the steps in your fraud investigation process. The system also creates an audit trail in the process.
Unlike humans, RPA can be active 24/7. Using RPA in banking can help ensure the accuracy of compliance processes, ensuring you’re compliant at all times without investing a lot of human resources towards compliance.
7. Decision Making
Managers at financial institutions need to make decisions about marketing, operations, and sales, but relying on raw data or external research doesn’t provide full context. RPA can help compile and analyze internal data to track client spending patterns and preferences.
AI and RPA-powered automation can help make decisions about timing marketing campaigns, redesigning workflows, and tailor-making products for your target audience. As a result, you improve the campaign’s effectiveness, process efficiency, and customer experience.
For example, when introducing a mortgage loan product, you can use RPA’s data analysis capabilities to identify location-specific and borrower-specific risks. RPA can compile a summary of the risks on a document, allowing the credit manager to study risk profiles without the associated manual work.
Blanc Labs’ Banking Automation Solutions
Blanc Labs works with financial organizations like banks, credit unions, and Fintechs to automate their processes.
We can create tailor-made automation software solutions based on your banks’ needs to minimize manual work and improve process efficiency. Our team can help you automate one or multiple parts of your workflow using technologies like RPA, AI, and ML.
Book a discovery call with us to see first-hand how automation can transform your bank’s core operations. We’ll create an automation solution specifically for your organization that works in tandem with your current internal systems.
McKinsey expects machines to be responsible for up to 10% to 25% of a bank’s functions. The reasons? Banking automation minimizes the need for your team to work on repetitive tasks, allowing them to focus on high-profile and strategic aspects of the business.
Automation also improves accuracy, which can save you a ton of money — a major reason why 80% of finance leaders have implemented or plan to implement Automation (including Robotic Process Automation).
Curious about how banking automation can help? We explain everything you need to know about how automating your banking workflow can help reduce costs and improve efficiency.
What is Banking Automation?
Banking automation involves using software powered by multiple technologies like AI (artificial intelligence) and ML (machine learning) to automate repetitive tasks. Automation has three primary benefits:
Frees up your team’s time for more strategic tasks
Improves process accuracy
Improves the Customer Experience (CX) and the Employee Experience (EX)
For example, you can automate your account opening process. A customer requests a new account via the chatbot on your website. The chatbot provides an application form. The applicant fills out the form, and it’s sent to your RPA robot. The robot performs the basic procedures, including checking the credit score and KYC verification.
Next, the robot scans the applicant’s documents using OCR (optical character recognition) for data extraction. The robot matches the information in the documents and the application form. It flags any details that don’t match and sends them for manual approval.
The robot continues to validate uploaded documents using NLP (natural language processing). It finds key data points in the document’s free text, categorizes them, and uses them in the automated process.
The robot then updates the bank’s backend system to create a new business account, provided the customer’s data meets the bank policy. Once approved, the customer receives an automated welcome email.
Why Banks Need Banking Automation
Banks need automation to compete in the modern banking environment. Now, that’s a broad statement, so here are specific reasons why a modern bank needs automation:
Allowing employees to focus on tasks that require a human touch: Most banks were set up long ago. Manual forms and workflows were a foundational pillar for legacy banks, and as a result, employees spend countless hours on things like data entry and account verification. Automation allows employees to “hand over” repetitive tasks to software, freeing up their time for high-profile tasks that require a human touch.
Record management: RPA can generate and check expense records for compliance. It auto-logs all transactions and prepares the necessary financial records to get an overview of your business’s financial performance and position.
Meeting customer expectations: The need for speed is a key driver of a modern customer’s experience. If you’re taking too long for basic operations like opening a bank account, you’ll lose customers fast. Automation can help speed up your processes and help deliver on your customer’s expectations.
Faster customer support: Your customers hate waiting hours to get an answer. Automating your support using RPA helps you respond faster. You can answer customers’ questions at scale using a chatbot. Also, you can use an AI-powered chatbot to answer questions you haven’t added as an FAQ.
These factors make automation more of a necessity than a nice-to-have — you need automation to compete neck-and-neck with other banks.
Low manual effort: Employees have more time available once they hand over repetitive tasks to software. They can do more in the same amount of time, helping you scale your operations.
Improved accuracy: Errors are expensive because you spend time and resources on correcting the errors. Fewer errors = improved productivity.
A great example of efficiency is automated document processing. As a banker, you probably spend a good number of hours reading documents and inserting relevant data into your systems, depending on your role at the bank. However, you don’t have to spend all those hours manually entering data if you use intelligent document processing.
Better Customer Experience
An average company takes over 12 hours to respond to customer service requests. That’s a recipe for dissatisfied customers, especially if you’re a financial institution.
Your customers expect their money to be in the hands of a reliable entity, and guess what you communicate when you don’t answer customers for over 12 hours?
Using RPA to automate your customer support helps minimize response times. In most cases, the chatbot can provide real-time answers to the most commonly asked questions.
Speed is also critical for other client-side processes. For example, you want to be as fast as possible in opening accounts, processing personal investment requests, or enabling additional services for an account. Automating these processes (while ensuring accuracy) helps improve customer experience.
Compliance and Risk Reporting
According to Deloitte, the cost of compliance for retail and corporate banks has increased by over 60% since the pre-financial crisis spending levels. Non-compliance is even more expensive, but automation can help lower your spending on compliance.
RPA builds compliance into your processes. Automating compliance ensures you’re always meeting regulatory requirements without requiring teams to spend extra time double-checking for compliance.
Automation also creates an audit trail and automatically generates risk reports that give you added insights. The system can identify and flag suspicious activities so that you can investigate them.
It’s easy to see how banking automation using RPA can reduce costs. Reduced administrative load, saving time on repetitive tasks, and speeding up processes all yield dividends.
Banking automation also removes human error, so you’ll spend less on fixing those mistakes.
Without automation, you’d need to invest a large amount of money in building more teams as you scale. However, automation empowers you to scale faster. You can continue investing in training current teams and save on costs you’d incur to accommodate a larger workforce.
Automation and Adaptability
Banking automation helps banks adapt faster to a client’s needs or the business environment.
Fintechs aren’t the only factor banks need to consider, though. Your bank might want to integrate banking solutions with a new partner’s ecosystem to offer additional services like tax consulting. Or your bank needs to process offshore transactions faster, especially when the transaction is subject to jurisdictional restrictions on the amount of transfer allowed.
Adaptability is critical for banks to succeed, and automation can make adapting to changes seamless. Implementing an automation solution will improve your adaptability to changes and allow you to quickly catch up with your modern competitors.
The Bottom Line
Over the past five decades, banking has gone from paper-based to almost entirely digital. Next up? Automation.
Automation makes banking frictionless for both internal and external stakeholders — it’s a win-win. The only problem banks face with automation is the lack of a reliable partner who can guide them through the transformation journey. Book a discovery call with us, and we’ll answer all your banking automation questions.
Currently, most enterprises have a workflow rampant with manual document-heavy processing.
However, businesses are quickly digitizing their document-processing workflows. 50% of B2B invoices across the globe will be processed without manual intervention according to a Gartner study. The reason? Manual document processing is more expensive than the cost of the documents themselves.
For example, the average cost of processing a single invoice was $10.89 in 2021. Manual document processing is also prone to human errors like fat finger errors. In a world where 90% of the data is unstructured, you need a tool that can automatically convert unstructured data into structured data to supercharge your productivity.
This guide explains how you can use intelligent document processing to save your business plenty of money, time, and resources.
What is Intelligent Document Processing?
Intelligent Document Processing (IDP) is a technology that automatically extracts unstructured data from multiple document sources, including images, online forms, and PDFs. IDP is also known as Cognitive Document Processing (CDP).
IDP converts this unstructured data into structured data using multiple technologies, including natural language processing (NLP), machine learning (ML), optical character recognition (OCR), and intelligent character recognition (ICR). Together, these technologies make IDP intelligent.
OCR is often used interchangeably with IDP. However, that’s not true. IDP uses OCR as one of the technologies to extract data.
How Does Intelligent Document Processing Work?
Here’s how a document is processed using IDP:
Conversion: An IDP platform starts by capturing your document through a scanning device. Once it converts a physical document into a digital one, it starts ingesting data.
Document image processing: The document’s image is processed for optimal OCR and archival.
Reading text using OCR: OCR helps the machine accurately read the scanned document’s text.
Identify language elements with NLP: IDP platforms use NLP to find language elements using methods like feature-based tagging and sentiment analysis.
Extracting elements using AI: IDP uses AI to extract information elements like contact numbers, addresses, and names.
Validation: IDP platforms validate information using third-party databases and lexicons for data validation. Data points are flagged when the platform can’t validate them so someone from the team can review them manually.
Top Intelligent Data Processing Use Cases in Banking
Reading and writing financial documents make up a large portion of a bank’s workflow. As a bank, you need to process data fast to offer best-in-class services to your customers without making errors.
IDP helps banks guarantee accuracy and efficiency to their clients. In addition to data extraction’s key role in a bank’s workflow, banks can also use IDP platforms for fraud detection.
Here are some of the most common use cases of IDP for banks.
Customer satisfaction with mortgage originators reduced by five points on a 1,000-point scale in 2021 according to a study by J.D. Power driven by record mortgage origination volume. Banks need to automate their mortgage workflow to scale as the demand grows. After all, customer satisfaction is one of the most significant differentiators in the mortgage industry.
The mortgage workflow involves collecting various documents. Extracting data from these documents is one of the major factors slowing down the workflow. This is where an IDP tool can help streamline your mortgage workflow.
An IDP tool helps you speed up the underwriting process with automation. It automatically reads and extracts relevant data and relays it to your bank’s credit evaluation system.
However, the claims processing workflow can be complex. Claims data comes in various formats—customers might send data as word files, PDFs, and images. Plus, you might receive the data via multiple channels—you might receive it via email, chat, or over a call.
Unifying this data without manual effort is a massive challenge. Traditionally, banks used OCR to process physical documents. However, the lack of accuracy required manual review.
An IDP tool is a great alternative to OCR for claims processing. Thanks to technologies like NLP, computer vision, and deep learning, it provides greater accuracy than traditional OCR.
Customer onboarding is one of the most resource-intensive processes for a bank. Banks spend an average of $280 to onboard a single client according to Backbase—the cost can add up when you’re onboarding hundreds or thousands of customers every month.
Many of these expenses go towards processing documents, including the bank’s forms, credit reports, or tax returns. Sure, you can try automating this workflow. However, the automation will break down as soon as a new document type is introduced or you change your form’s template.
An IDP tool can help tame your customer onboarding costs. Your customers will appreciate a fast onboarding experience, and you’ll save money, increase productivity, and make an excellent first impression.
Financial Document Analysis
Banks handle thousands of financial documents every day. From financial statements to tax returns, carefully studying financial documents is critical to a bank’s operations.
Financial analysis is a cognitively heavy task. Why make your team spend time on mundane tasks like manipulating data when you can use an IDP tool to automate this process and enable your team to concentrate on their more complex deliverables.
Using an IDP tool helps analysts automatically structure and populate relevant financial data into their system. You’ll do your analyst team a favor by eliminating a lot of their manual work, allowing them to focus on analysis.
KYC Process Automation
KYC (Know Your Customer), Re-KYC, and C-KYC are critical for compliance. Banks might need to refer to a customer’s KYC details at various stages during a customer’s journey.
However, handling hand-written KYC forms is a hassle. Migrating a customer’s KYC data comes with challenges like human error and work overload. Committing errors when underwriting a mortgage or onboarding a customer costs money, but failing to comply with KYC requirements may increase the legal, compliance and regulatory risks.
Using IDP ensures accuracy, so you never have to lose your reputation and pay a fine for failing to comply with KYC norms. The McKinsey KYC Benchmark Survey found that by increasing end-to-end KYC-process automation by 20%, an organization could enjoy the following positive outcomes:
Increased quality assurance by 13%
Improved customer experience (by reducing customer outreach frequency) by 18%
Increased the number of cases processed per month by 48%
The Bottom Line
Banks process a colossal amountnumber of documents and data each day. Getting new customer data into the system, processing claims, and analyzing financial statements are heavily data-driven tasks that involve dozens of documents from hundreds of customers.
The probability of committing errors is high. Banks also need a large team just to process documents and structure the data in those documents.
Banks need an IDP tool to automate this process and remove the risk of error from the process. It also integrates with applications to make migrating the data easier. An IDP tool also validates data and alerts team members in exception cases, when it requires a human to review accuracy.
It is important to select an IDP tool that offers the right solutions for your industry. Better yet, find a partner who can create a custom IDP solution tailor-made for you.
Blanc Labs partners with financial organizations like banks, credit unions, and fintechs to automate operations.
We can help you create robust automation solutions that minimize manual effort, reduce errors, and improve productivity. Our team helps you use the most advanced technologies including AI and ML to automate complex, resource-heavy processes like document processing.
Book a discovery call with us if your financial organization deals with plenty of documents daily. We’ll come up with a tailor-made solution to minimize the friction in your document processing workflow.
Transforming a Bank’s Value Network with Automation
Transforming a Bank’s Value Network with Automation
August 11, 2022
Michael Porter’s value chain has been one of the top seminal business management ideas that saw business operations with through a new lens. Just like the value chain resulted in concepts like value creation and value pricing leading to phenomenal growth in global business scale and operations in the last 50 years, we are now seeing a similar scenario in the financial services industry with intelligent automation.
At the turn of the century, we saw a new concept emerge that resulted in changing the business dynamics in the Y2K. This new business concept came to be known as value network, a series of interactions between individuals, entities, organizations, departments, and systems that collectively work towards benefitting the entire group or ecosystem. This new concept had an astounding impact on how businesses and markets operated and paved the course of today’s business ecosystem. For instance, the rise of Apple and its ecosystem can be attributed to this shift.
A similar shift is also taking place in the financial services industry, where the digitization, embedment, and now decentralization of the payments ecosystem with the commercialization of blockchain, cryptocurrencies, procure to pay (P2P) lending are being touted as the next big thing.
Given the pervasive technical and innovative initiatives that are emerging at breakneck speed, it is a necessity necessary to keep transforming and innovating. This is especially relevant for the financial services industry which have millennials as customers and will soon begin catering to GenZ.
To digitally transform a bank’s value network let’s start by stating the three core areas of a bank’s value network namely, network promotion & contract management, service provisioning & billing, and platform operations.
With a two-sided value network, the bank fundamentally connects a borrower with a depositor and thus, becomes the enabler of value creation for such a network. In doing so, a bank delivers core banking and back-office operations, payments and lending functions, and risk and treasury management activities.
For each of these areas, hundreds of functions and duties must be seamlessly executed with precision. Today, the increase in business volumes and scale of operations has led to bankers asking, “What if these complex and time-consuming operations can be boosted with robots (bots) assisting humans to accelerate speed, increase productivity, and assure the precision of key banking functions?”
Some of the key operational areas where bots can and, in many cases, are assisting humans to realize the true potential of an enterprise are customer service, compliance accounts payable, credit card processing, mortgage processing, fraud detection, know your customer (KYC) process, general ledger, report automation and account closure process.
By embracing bots, banks can improve the customer experience while reducing costs and improving efficiency. Increased automation combined with more efficient processes makes the day-to-day easier for teams and individual contributors as they will spend less time on tedious manual work, and more time on profitable projects. Let humans contribute to high-value innovation, and robots help in maintaining and running operations to ensure an efficient and effective enterprise. To realize the true value of bots, and for a bank to embark on its digital transformation journey, the right approach, executive sponsor, business alignment, process discovery & design, pilot, roadmap, and a center of excellence (CoE) is essential to succeed. By using tactics such as data alignment, problem framing, road mapping, and piloting new robots, a bank will be well poised to reach its automation goals.
Blanc Labs has deep industry knowledge and proven experience working with leading banks to gain efficiencies through intelligent automation solutions. We take a holistic approach, helping financial services companies build the necessary foundation and setting them up for long-term success.
Book a consultation with Blanc Labs to discover the impact of our Intelligent Automation solution.
In the last two years, we have witnessed a consumer engagement revolution. The pandemic has seen a rush toward digital channels in all facets of life, including the banking industry. The need for instant gratification and round-the-clock support means that lenders must process customer or broker requests faster while balancing security, compliance, and risk management. Data released by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) suggests that in the first half of 2021, the mortgage industry in Canada saw its fastest growth in the last 10 years. Given the rising demand of the market, the “need for speed” in the loan origination and decisioning process is at the top of the list.
Staying ahead of the competition requires a digital transformation that often begins with intelligent document processing as the first step. Financial institutions must partner with the right intelligent document processing (IDP) solution provider that will deliver both speed and accuracy to meet consumer expectations.
Tedious and time-consuming processes
The process of mortgage approval or renewal involves many, many documents. Before a mortgage is even approved, a mobile mortgage lender must collect and organize documents (sometimes handwritten), send them to various personnel in the financial organization to be vetted, and finally return to the customer with a yes or no—a process that can take up days or weeks. If a bank takes too long to respond to a borrower, they may turn to offers from other lenders. Such a situation is easily avoided with the help of intelligent document processing. Once a document is received, the right IDP program can classify it, extract data from the document, and store the data in a way that is accessible around the clock, not just to employees of the lender but to RPA (robotic process automation) processes as well. If additional documents are required, the RPA process can notify the mortgage agent or borrower. If the application is complete, then the RPA can send the data ahead for auto-decisioning. Using IDP in combination with RPA can ensure a quick turnaround on an application without consuming too much time.
Organizations with no digital document processing reported 10x more at-risk customers and 2x more at-risk revenue compared to other companies. (Forrester, 2020)
Inability to scale
One way to address the growing demand for mortgages is to hire, train and retain more employees. However, increasing the size of the team may result in a higher time to value (as new employees will take time to ramp up to desired levels of efficiency) and increased costs too. Lenders can benefit from IDP solutions that may be scaled up quickly with a marginal infrastructure cost.
Just digitization isn’t enough
Many lenders today receive applications through mortgage portals. While the first step of digitization of documents is taken care of, banks do not follow through to ensure the proper classification, extraction, and storage of these documents. As a result, an employee must still go through the documents to verify and authenticate their contents to ensure they are adequate for an application. It is no surprise that knowledge workers lose 50% of their time preparing documents and therefore, experience a 21% loss in productivity because of document issues.
Security and risks
Worldwide, the digital fraud attempt rate grew by 52.2% in 2021 compared to two years earlier. Banks or financial institutions that do not have intelligent document processing capabilities may be caught off guard or may not be able to respond in time to stop transactions. IDP, on the other hand, can reduce the incidence of fraudulent transactions by assessing large volumes of historical data accurately and in real-time. By identifying the patterns, an automated system can immediately flag a suspicious transaction and stop it if necessary.
KYC is another area where IDP software can help by minimizing human error. The IDP program can read submitted documents, verify the identity and details of the customer by searching through data repositories and even assign them a risk score, thereby helping the lenders meet regulatory standards.
Unaligned with consumer demands
Unsatisfactory products and fees, slow response to problem resolution, and a lack of convenience are some of the top reasons why financial institutions are are losing out to FinTechs and digital-only banks. One of the biggest contributions IDP can make is to automate repetitive manual tasks and free up lenders employees’ time in activities that will increase customer satisfaction—building trust & rapport and enhancing product offerings.
Automate document processing with Blanc Labs
There are many reasons why banks need intelligent document processing, and Blanc Labs provides a 360-degree IDP solution that can:
Automate workflows for document collection, digitization and analysis
Replace manual effort through intelligent data capture
Connect with third party data providers for analysis and insights
Analyze document data, provide status alerts, and flag fraudulent entries
Secure documents in a drop box
Deploy on premises, in the cloud or as a hybrid model
In recent years there has been a growing desire among financial institutions to automate processes as they move upstream to meet customer requirements. Before important decisions like loans and underwriting decisions are even made, financial institutions are deploying automation at the start of the process to provide a seamless digital-first experience.
Research shows that automation is one of the fastest and most efficient ways for financial institutions to acquire, enhance and deliver information, reduce costs and save manual labor. Then why is it that most automation initiatives fail?
4 Ways to Avoid A Failed Automation Journey
A survey by EY states that 30-50% of initial RPA projects failed to realize their expected returns. The diagnosis suggests some challenges the enterprises typically face in their automation journey which potentially cause the RPA failure. Here we explore 4 ways in which enterprises can avoid automation journey failures:
Automation cannot be successful without proper implementation of change management. Even if automation is a technical matter, it relies heavily on human relations. Intelligent Process Automation (IPA) is different than your typical IT project such as ERP/CRM etc.
These projects require engagement from business users because, in essence, the role of the very same individual will evolve with the adoption of automation. Organizations that have been successful in their automation journey have put a real emphasis on the training and mobility of their teams when implementing automated processes. One of the most common examples of this is the changes in the target user interface. Any changes to the UI interface of an RPA application or system will most likely halt the automation which can put projects in a critical condition. Therefore, some organizations ask their automation core team to regularly check for changes in the ecosystem of the dependencies (in this case the UI interface) to avoid any failures.
Create automation champions within the organization
Automation is here to stay and is evolving rapidly. However, many organizations still see their automation initiatives as a project and not as a journey. Automation today has moved away from being just a technology project and is more about data transparency and technology capability. Most organizations don’t approach automation with the rigor it requires, assuming the business workforce need only attend a few training courses and that they can, without the support of IT, generate enough extensive automation to scale a program.
IT is a critical partner throughout the transformation process. Their role is to ensure that the system is scalable, reliable, secure, and performs well. To make automation scalable, organizations should have a core team who are experts in the automation space. Successful organizations use such a core team to articulate the business value of automation well and get buy-in from key stakeholders within their organization. The core team articulates the need, advantages, and roll-out plan to each stakeholder before moving ahead with automation.
Use the right tools to understand what needs to be automated
Not all business processes are considered fit for automation. Choosing the wrong pilot process without understanding the needs can become one of the major reasons for failed automation initiatives. The success of any automation program strongly depends on a deep understanding of how processes will get handled on-ground.
Organizations are moving towards discovery tools such as process mining, task mining, and task capture which identify automation and improvement potential in end-to-end business processes and unleash the true value of automation.
Keep employee experience at the core of the automation vision
In recent years we have realized that automation is not about replacing human beings but helping them be more efficient and using them for strategic work rather than manual. Automation projects require even more engagement from these individuals (users) to ensure the stability of the automation program.
It is important that organizations have full management support to communicate and reassure their teams that automation is more about reducing boring/repetitive tasks so that they can focus on more interesting and fulfilling work. Think about a contact center agent in a bank who struggles daily with clients because they had to go through 15 or 16 applications to do simple resolutions. They will be better off with an easier interface where they can focus more on the clients rather than swivel chair operations. Automation can help these contact centers to reshape the experience not only of the customer but also of the team members, which will also lead to better talent retention rate.
There is no question that Intelligent automation has demonstrated exceptional results, from predicting behavior to streamlining operations. But its implementation needs to be thoughtful, effective, and pragmatic to ensure its long-term success. There are other factors that can cause a project to fail including the lack of testing and not following the best development practices. However, these 4 reasons are primary and should be taken into consideration before starting your automation journey.
Blanc Labs has proven experience working with organizations to identify and implement intelligent automation solutions. We take a holistic approach, helping organizations build the necessary foundation and setting them up for long-term success in a hyper-automation environment.