Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is a true genius that’s present itself in the form of technological advancements in this decade. The fact that RPA drives relationships is beyond doubt, through the numerous studies that research organizations and institutions conducted over the past few years. However, there are still some questions over how banks should automate their processes, as more often than not, banks have made a few errors in implementing RPA in the right areas, which has cost them. Nevertheless, the promise of RPA remains alive – with paybacks starting within 5 days and giving returns within months of implementation

The First Bottleneck – Customer Onboarding

Manual processes still encompass many of the activities that a bank conducts in its front, middle and back office. For example, let’s start with the beginning of a customer’s journey with the bank – customer onboarding (i.e. front office operations). Traditionally the customer onboarding journey takes an average of a week during which several forms, manual compliance checks and background verification along with in person identification takes place.

Did You Know: According to several reports, 38% of new customers are ready to leave their bank in the middle of their customer onboarding process and 26% feel easy enrollment and login is the most essential aspect of choosing a particular bank over another?

Neo Banks and challenger banks are competitive because of their faster customer on boarding processes. Traditional Banks can up their game through RPA, strengthening their on boarding process and ensuring that everyone who signs up, stays!

The Second Bottleneck – Loan Processing and Mortgage Loans

Another aspect where banks get caught behind schedule is when customers line up for loans and mortgage loans. The manual processing of loans causes a massive increase in terms of labor costs and backlogs of files that are left for customer verification process. Simple processes such as loan request approval, by itself takes a long period of time, while automating the process can provide the customer with a notification of the same within minutes.

Each of the various other processes such as risk assessment, decision making and monitoring processes can each be automated, and hence can enable the bank to use their human workforce for more intelligent tasks and at the same time, can save in terms of cost and time.

Interesting Fact: In the United States, mortgage loan processing takes about 50-53 days. – Such a long period of time for loan processing would be devastating for a bank’s reputation in the current millennial banking age.

Bringing in robots into mortgage process can bring down the time taken by nearly 75% – that’s a massive cut down on time, and the costs.

The Third Bottleneck – Fraud and Risk Compliance

“Automation is the future of fraud risk management” – Deloitte

Everything has its pros and cons and technology is no different. With the various technological advancements in the current decade, there has also been a tsunami of fraudulent activities. With banks having manual monitoring processes, suspicious transactions could easily go unnoticed. Another reason for worry is that, according to experts, banks generally end up spending 80% of their time aggregating the data and spend the remaining 20% of their time analyzing it, without brings into highlight the elephant in the room – long, repetitive and monotonous tasks that use up several working hours for completion.

Did You Know: 65% of respondents in a survey believe that driving more profitability and higher quality and accuracy in the data is the biggest value proposition for RPA – Well, data accuracy can increase to 95% with RPA implementation. 

For cases, when the system crashes or needs to restart, RPA can automatically make back-up copies for core processes to continue taking place and can quickly obtain data from off-site locations in order to keep your system secure. In other words, 90% of all processes involving fraud and compliance management can be automated through RPA – it just requires the initial inertia by the bank to start going forward.

Final Thoughts

With the millennial banking crowd creating a demand for millennial services, RPA can truly redefine banking; can invigorate banks through increased employer and customer satisfaction and can ensure that banks play smart, by introducing bots for repetitive tasks. The movement has started with over 53% of banks having started their RPA journey and another 21% of banks expected to take the plunge in the coming year.

With the current banking climate, economic meltdowns crying wolf every now and then, the journey of getting on the RPA bandwagon can be considered as the leap of faith. It’s up to banks to figure out if they’re ready to put everything for a better banking future for the employee and the customer. It’s time for banks to write their story and ours to listen and help them on their way.

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Ashish Ninan Cherian

Ashish Cherian is a marketing enthusiast who has an extreme interest in analytics and in studying customer behaviour. He wants to progress deeply in these areas and is keen on learning something new every day. He also loves to read, travel, and debate and is a huge foodie.
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