The first Robotic Process Automation (RPA) Virtual Bot in KAUST goes live in Finance!

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In collaboration with KAUST IT, the Finance Division would like to announce the successful rollout of the first Robotic Process Automation (RPA) Virtual Bot, which is tasked with performing invoice clearances.

RPA is a software solution that mimics an individual’s activities across multiple software packages, enabling repetitive tasks to be automated by Virtual Bots.  Using a Virtual Bot reduces the risk of human error and allows people to spend their time on more important activities, like customer service. Some of the benefits a Virtual Bot offers are:

  • Errors are minimized by fully automating the process
  • Productivity increases as no human involvement is required
  • Processing is unaffected by high-volume peak periods
  • Employees avoid monotonous tasks, freeing up time to work on more meaningful cognitive tasks/activities
  • Business activities are less impacted by events such as COVID-19.

After a successful proof of concept program to understand the capability of RPA technology, KAUST IT, along with the Finance Division and HR, partnered with Automation Anywhere to carry out a longer-term program to see what opportunities there are for an RPA platform at KAUST.

With several processes in the pipeline, we are happy to see the first Virtual Bot now in action, where in the first month, the Virtual Bot has successfully reviewed and processed almost 500 invoices.

Certainly, we see many future opportunities to incorporate other Virtual Bots into the Finance Division’s processes to gain more of these benefits.

If you think you have opportunities for robotic process automation in your areas and want to learn more about RPA, please feel free to contact KAUST IT at RPA@KAUST.edu.sa

Rob Fekete, KAUST CFO

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