The benefits of implementing RPA in finance

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RPA works well for simple processes that operate in relatively high transaction volumes -- and finance and accounting are ripe with them, said Craig Le Clair, vice president and principal analyst at Forrester Research. "One bank that I interviewed had 1,400 people closing the books monthly, quarterly, end of year, and they felt they could automate [the work of] about a third of those full-time employees with RPA." Imran Sabir, the senior manager of RPA at OZ, a consulting company based in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., agreed that RPA can improve an organization's end-of-year closing, which is the most hectic time for finance. The financial close and reporting process encompasses numerous tasks that involve many systems, departments and individuals, from closing out subledgers to creating and delivering financial filings to regulatory bodies, Sabir said. The process requires posting data from sources such as Microsoft Excel to these subledgers -- a tedious undertaking that RPA can mitigate and solve efficiently. Reporting is another common use case for RPA in finance, according to Sabir.

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