The spike in pressure among the financial services industry is one that today’s organizations have to get in front of. When digital transformation, the demands for modernization, and fierce competition began in recent years, proactive approaches became the requirement. Companies that still react to change are likely to struggle in the current, trailblazing landscape, and they may even fail to reach business-critical goals.
As a true value driver in financial services today, IT teams must spearhead transitions and initiatives across their organizations, involving decision makers and other stakeholders.
The power to boost the business potential of financial services firms is in the hands of IT – a must-have force as customer needs and expectations get tougher to meet. The growth of online banking, digital currencies and more mean organizations must meet customers where they are: on their devices; not at traditional teller windows. They’ve come to see uninterrupted availability of services, security, and streamlined processes as the norm – not the latest and greatest, next big things.
It means IT teams are bringing home big wins for their organizations through tools like self-healing automation, the combined efforts of robotic process automation (RPA) and IT process automation (ITPA), and the orchestration of automated processes.
Automation and Orchestration: Complementary and Capable of Big Business Results
Now that organizations are better understanding the ease of starting automations and building onto them, including those they already have, they’re getting curious about orchestration and the hype surrounding it.
The definition of orchestration might be unclear to some, given it has become such a hot trend in IT. Orchestration, referred to automation applied to entire IT-supported processes, is highly reflective of the value automation can bring.
Basically, connecting automation to business success is growing in importance because of distributed IT teams, heightened IT request volume and how tickets are addressed. And so, IT and stakeholder focus is turning to end-to-end process automation rather than that of individual tasks. This doesn’t mean that task automation is no longer needed; instead, it serves as building blocks of orchestration and enables orchestration of larger processes, like employee onboarding and offboarding.
Chances are, your scripts IT professionals have been writing can assemble orchestrated processes, which results in getting more value from them. Organizations can group a few automations, and even cross-siloed IT processes together into smaller orchestrated experiences and drive significant business value – all by adding automation and orchestration together.
IT teams are on a continuous automation journey and opportunities for orchestration will develop over time. You’re likely to find them when mundane, repetitive tasks start to limit your IT team’s productivity. When this happens and task-based automation is applied, you’re at a good place where IT can match their effort with the most possible business value, and then identify automations to orchestrate that will align with business goals. The key is to give it a big-picture view rather than a one-and-done mindset.
A Holistic View of Automation for Financial Services
Automation and orchestration are a package deal for the now-required holistic approach to automation success in financial services.
Today’s automation toolkit isn’t your average toolkit. In financial services, it has evolved to house a collection of technologies that range from RPA, AI/ML, workflow automation and more. These tools specifically aim to drive innovation, rev up efficiency, and set up and grow a competitive advantage – things many financial services institutions need just to get by.
If each automation technology provides an edge around a set of boxed constraints, but as a whole, are they disruptive enough to truly be transformative? With a holistic view, you can see that to digitally transform key processes from end to end, you must take it a step further than automation basics to orchestrate at least some of them.
Financial services firms can get a host of advantages from end-to-end process automation in addition to the jump in innovation, efficiency, and competitive edge. It also brings in lower operational costs, better customer experiences, and enhanced compliance, as well as drives digital transformation goals firms must have today.
What Automations Can Be Orchestrated in Financial Services?
Using scripts is nothing new to IT teams, and in financial services, scripts certainly have a big job of facilitating various tasks, like automating routine processes to enabling complex data analysis. Automations like these are task-specific; however, and so it’s harder to handle such high demands.
As such, as IT organizations scale and these tasks become more complex, scripts also become more challenging to maintain. As they evolve, scripts can be difficult to comprehend, especially if multiple teams are dealing with them. Such complexity leads to errors, which make debugging and troubleshooting quite taxing and tough. And to add on another layer, oftentimes, a lack of proper oversight or documentation opens doors for insufficient control and visibility of automaton efforts.
Today, leading organizations are well into making advances by automating many of their back-end processes. They use RPA to augment human actions by interacting with digital systems.
RPA bots automate common tasks like extracting data from customer documents, and then processing and verifying the information; filling forms with relevant data from outside data sources; and reconciliating data to verify every entry against the bank data and other records.
RPA bots are handling today’s stable and repetitive tasks, but they can fail when tasks are unpredictable. Just like any technology. IT teams must fully understand how RPA can deliver the greatest results, ramp up throughout, and discover existing weaknesses.
However, when IT complexity takes the form of intricate design logic, distributed IT systems, and the need to connect to hundreds of systems, RPA bots might not be the best choice.
AIOps, another popular form of automation, leverages artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to optimize monitoring.
AIOps automation is highly important in the fiercely competitive and regulated financial services landscape because it provides a significant edge by enabling real-time decision making, by correlating alerts and lowering the number of alarms IT must manage.
Many financial services today still rely on manual processes for incident detection and resolution, but AIOps has the power to change the entire game.
While technology has enormous potential in helping IT teams get ahead of potential production issues, the benefits can only be realized if they read the alerts and are able to act on them.
The End-to-End Process Automation Key Takeaway
Each of these automation technologies provides innovation within its boundaries, but to digitally transform key processes from end-to-end, you need to not only automate, but also orchestrate some or all of these different automations.
End-to-end process automation in financial services offers a range of advantages that contribute to increased efficiency, reduced operational costs, improved customer experiences, and enhanced compliance. It is the catalyst to digital transformation.
Employee Onboarding: See it in Action
Join us January 30, 8 a.m. PST/11 a.m. EST for our webinar, “Mastering Modernization: Automation Tips for Financial Services to Digitize Core Processes,” to learn more.