Retail’s Future Lies in Robotic Process Automation

It’s no secret that the retail sector is going through a monumental transformation, whether bricks and mortar or online. Consequently, it has never been more important to take stock of business processes, assess where efficiencies can be made, and determine how technology can be maximized to offer a compelling proposition of both superior customer experience and operational improvement.

Automation in the Workplace

Big-ticket IT upgrades, replacements, and integrations are often risky and prohibitively expensive. However, transformative technology exists that can work within an existing IT ecosystem to create a platform for long-term innovation and success. This is driven by the Robotic process Automation (RPA) and AI. RPA harnesses the power of fast and highly efficient software robots to emulate human employees’ actions within digital systems, in order to execute business processes.

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The Opportunities of RPA for Retail

RPA is of particular relevance in retail, given the level of automation on which the industry depends, and the vast data management required. In a retail environment, software robots can automate essential, standard, high-volume, repeatable, rule-based processes, from supply chain right through to post-purchase.

RPA and Customer Satisfaction

The notion of customer experience as a differentiator is not new but isn’t being taken seriously enough in the current retail climate. UK retailers currently lose £102 billion each year due to poor customer satisfaction – but AI and other new technologies could help improve the consumer experience, increasing repeat business and minimizing abandoned orders. Here, RPA can help – automating time- and resource-heavy customer-focused activities, including complaint handling and loyalty scheme management. RPA can ensure customer complaints are addressed quickly and effectively, turning disgruntled customers into brand advocates and improving customer loyalty.

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