Business operations are significantly impacted in unprecedented ways in these challenging times. Manufacturers are at the helm of this disruption with extreme, unexpected changes in supply and demand. They are putting together strategic action plans and recovery initiatives to tackle the ongoing crisis with automation emerging as the silver bullet to help them lighten the load. 

Despite industry robots doing the heavy lifting to assemble, test and package products to streamline the assembly line, manufacturers are still struggling to maintain control over the management of its back-office and operational processes.  

The Manufacturing Industry has ample opportunities for Robotic Process Automation(RPA) that offers significant increase in efficiency. 

Furthermore, RPA in manufacturing is one of those innovative technologies that enables substantial reduction in time for order processing, product manufacturing and dispatching to customers. The adoption of RPA renders a competitive advantage to manufacturing firms. 

To tackle the multiple pain points that the manufacturing sector is facing as a result of the ongoing crisis, manufacturers are looking to implement RPA to achieve improved agility, enhanced efficiency and streamline operations, across the value chain leading to a cost savings of up to 20%. 

Many Fortune 500 companies have jumped on the wagon to scale automation across businesses to unlock the full potential of RPA and boost their productivity. 

Intelligent automation not only enhances the operational capabilities of manufacturing firms but enables them to improve the speed of operations and stay on top of connected manufacturing by integrating RPA, cognitive automation and built-in analytics. 

So, let’s take a loot at some of the top use cases of RPA in manufacturing. 

  • Bills of Material 

Bills of Material is an important document in manufacturing. As the name suggests, it contains a comprehensive list of required materials and components to build a new product. The primary purpose of the document is to provide workers with all the knowledge they need about building new products, i.e. what, when, how and where from to purchase. 

Errors at any of these points can lead to a negative chain effect on the rest of the production cycle, resulting in massive losses for your business. Therefore, RPA is indeed required with its capacity for quasi error proof task performance to achieve accurate and on-time completion of the procedure. 

  • Administration and Reporting 

Manufacturing companies encounter a number of difficulties especially when it comes to processing, which can cause a tremendous burden on the administration department.  This is where RPA comes into the picture and acts as the silver bullet  for managing administration effectively. 

With the use of bots, all the reports required to provide a clear and effective production image can be produced accurately and in time. This will also encourage enhanced decision making regarding the business processes to be followed to achieve the desired results for the organization.

  • Data Migration

Proper and timely upgrades are a must for a company to prosper in the manufacturing industry especially in light of the ongoing crisis. To ensure consistency of business operations as well as continual incorporation of novel procurement into the production cycle, shifting data from old to the new systems becomes imperative. 

If data migration is done manually, there is a high possibility of errors which could prove to be enormous and expensive, and with the systems being intrinsically interconnected, the possibility of compound errors also increases significantly.

Robotic process automation can accelerate the performance and mitigate the possibility of error, resulting in more productive results. RPA software integration can effectively streamline the process of migration from paper to a completely new digital system. RPA bots digitize paper files and seamlessly have them integrated into the new system. Such intelligent automation saves time and mitigates human errors. 

  • Regulatory Compliance 

Manufacturers who sell their products worldwide experience a time – consuming problem when it comes to managing compliance issues for each product and region. Implementing RPA can simplify this process. 

Apart from ensuring accurate data processing in keeping with compliance requirements, RPA tools also keep track of the current operations at any given time.

  • Inventory Control

The inventory process is one back-office procedure which can become very labor intensive when manually done. The inconsistencies in factors such as manufacturer delivery as well as consumer demand will contribute to a dearth of accuracy that muddles process completion, contributing to defective inventory turnover, as well as problems owing to the varying demand. 

Using bots for automating correspondence, procurement procedures, digitisation of paperwork,  monitoring inventory and consumer demand levels, and identifying and minimizing shortcomings becomes a much more preferable alternative. The bots offer enhanced operational efficiency, significant cost reductions and facilitate better interaction with both suppliers and consumers. 

  • Invoice processing

Invoice processing  involves interaction between several persons who have to perform numerous invoice reviewing and authorisation procedures that exist in a variety of formats and languages. Here, the possibility of error is compounded by the tediousness of the tasks and  undermined attention of the employees. Using RPA  leads to seamless invoice processing and management. 

  • Customer Support

Customer service is an integral part of business development. Robotics Process Automation can be used for better communication with the customers in the front office.

Leveraging an RPA platform allows employees to access data stored on multiple systems in one place. It allows employees to better serve the customers and can also be used to position a reminder while the salesperson continues to communicate with clients, upholds a contact schedule, and so on. 

Conclusion

RPA is emerging as a game changer in the Manufacturing industry. Manufacturing firms looking to unlock the full potential of their firm’s productivity, management and administration, should perhaps implement RPA in every functional area.

RPA solutions are easy to implement and it seamlessly integrates with the existing legacy systems. The role of RPA in the manufacturing industry is continually evolving with the growing number of functional areas it can benefit. 

At Tevince, we can help you develop a long-term RPA strategy to match evolving business processes with technology and automation. Connect with us to deploy a successful enterprise-wide RPA implementation.