Finding the right solution to automate processes is a challenge.
Throughout large organizations, departments are operating on dozens of processes that have been digitalized or automated to varying degrees.
These departments are begging for IT’s help to fix their outdated workflows. Others have “solved” their own problems with freemiums and macro-rich spreadsheets. Both scenarios are risky and need to be addressed with a sustainable, long-term solution. (Which one is scarier is kind of a toss up).
Navigating your automation platform choices
With high demand for full-scale digitalization in the enterprise, IT is under tremendous pressure to automate widely and quickly — especially those lingering manual processes. There are technologies that offer a speedy pathway to automation, but speed in the short-term doesn’t add up to a long-term automation strategy.
Other organizations are in a digital rut with legacy automation solutions. IT departments take a “this is the way we’ve always done it” approach and assume what worked five years ago is good enough. It’s not.
Frequently Asked Questions
How is Intelligent Automation different from “regular” automation?
What separates intelligent automation from traditional process automation is that it extends automation past just digitizing rote and repetitive tasks. With Intelligent Automation, the inclusion of services (like artificial intelligence and machine learning) enables solutions to recognize patterns, surface insights, and execute decisioning. Intelligent Automations enables processes to adapt in real-time, based on inputs that can range from data points as broad as language to biometrics to telemetry.
What skillset is necessary to deliver intelligent automation solutions?
The most important ingredient in successful intelligent automation projects is collaboration across different skillsets. Projects that include business domain experts in the development of solutions succeed at a higher rate because processes are much more clearly understood by all the people involved in delivering the solution. Platforms like Mendix that include sophisticated collaborative development tools foster the type of interactions necessary for these projects.
What kinds of processes are the best candidates for automation?
Any process that can be identified can be automated. In fact, tools exist that can even mine for and surface undocumented processes. Some organizations start by automating processes that increase operational efficiency internally. Others start with processes that represent customer interactions. Some examples of process automation are Complex Approval Workflows, Incident Management, and Customer Onboarding.
How does Mendix support process automation for both employees and for customers?
Many Mendix customers find that the processes that they are most interested in automating run across both employees and customers; positive customer experiences are highly correlated with positive employee experiences. For employee-facing portions of an automated process, access to all the data they need, and that data being reliable and consistent is paramount; similarly, tools that make it easy for employees to see the status of work in a complex process is key to their satisfaction. For customers, expectations are consumer-grade: being able to connect to organizations on different devices, through different methods (e.g., chatbot), and with up-to-date status and action options.
When should I use Mendix for process automation versus RPA?
Mendix application development and workflow, and RPA can be very complementary. Several Mendix customers have combined these technologies to achieve high degrees of automation and cost savings. While RPA is best for automating data entry and similar repetitive tasks, Mendix can connect to numerous core systems, model workflow outside of basic tasks, foster deeper collaboration across business experts and developers, and embed workflows is sophisticated multi-channel solutions.
When should I use Mendix for process automation versus iBPMS?
There is an overlap in the types of processes that Mendix and BPM vendors can address. Mendix customers report choosing Mendix for process automation for a few key reasons: (1) Simplicity in accessing data across a panoply of core systems, (2) ease of incorporating business domain experts (citizen developers) into enterprise process automation development, and (3) Ability to expose different pieces of a process to appropriate audiences on a variety of devices and technologies without rework.