Employees in the organization have information needs beyond monetary needs. The organization has to serve employee information by providing required information from time to time and on time. Employees become upset and do repeat follow-ups for the information, in case of delays in providing the required information, indirectly impacting his/her productivity and employee motivation.
A Case Study
A mid-size manufacturing company with 700+ employee strengths has well known ERP implemented for business operations, including Human Resource(HR) module with features that can be extended to all employees for accessing required information about leave, travel, attendance, allowances, performance, holidays, etc. for the individual.
The organization was deliberating having Self Service licenses procured for each employee Vs Managed HR Helpdesk to respond to employee information requests. An organization-level survey was conducted to make a decision on Managed Help Desk Vs Employee Self Service Application licenses Vs other options.
Findings show that employees need information in secured mode and with a reasonable lead time of up to two hours, with some exceptions. While options were evaluated for named licenses, the cost factor was adverse considering the usage maximum of 20% of total availability.
It was decided to adopt the option of the Robotic Process Automation (RPA) tool to respond to employee requests by providing required employee information in digital format and secured mode when requested thru a pre-defined mode i.e. thru registered E-mail Id.
Employee Help Desk services managed by RPA Bot: A dedicated RPA Bot developed and deployed for responding to employee information requests, with the following preparations, based on employee survey responses:
- ‘Request Code’ is defined for every request type as a one-time activity.
- Exceptions scenarios, that need manual actions e.g. Signed salary certificate
- Email Layout, File Naming format & Password security features for attachment
- Service account in ERP with required authorizations to generate reports or fetch information.
- One-time exercise of Email Id registration/validation in the ERP System.
- Email exception scenarios to share with HRMS Admin.
- Email rules for queuing emails to process by priority.
High-Level Process of ‘Employee Help Desk – Managed by Bot’
While one-time efforts for building Request Codes, output templates, email ids validation, Email layout, handling the exceptions, and taking corrective actions, the RPA Bot is stabilized in a shorter period of two months. As well a feature is built to attach a document covering updated ‘Request Codes‘ for easy reference.
With the deployment of RPA Bot managed Employee Help Desk, the organization could achieve the following:
- Improved employee experience to receive information within lead time in a secured format
- Giving time back to employees from follow-up for information with consistent response from RPA Bot
- Saving on ERP named user License cost for employee self-service modules
- Saving on resource costs to manage employee help desk
- Sharing Bot for other schedule/monitoring/follow-up activities with other functions
Unlike the human-managed help desk, Bot managed help desk is working 24 x 7 and providing information in a timely manner to employees, which makes them focus on their work and saves time on follow-up, and made them more efficient.
A software robot is a tool that will work well beyond business process automation, viz., help to improve the employee experience by providing them on-demand information in a secure manner. There are several ‘Art of possibilities’, i.e. use cases for automation using software bots, which can be explored to improve customer, vendor, and employee experience by providing consistent and accurate responses in a timely manner.