Hyper automation is one of the emerging macro trends in the Financial Services industry and it represents a strategic resource to drive growth in modern organizations.
According to IBM “Hyper automation is the concept of automating everything in an organization that can be automated. Organizations that adopt hyper automation aim to streamline processes across their business using artificial intelligence (AI), robotic process automation (RPA), and other technologies to run without human intervention.”

Automation vs hyper automation

But which is the difference between “simple” automation and hyper automation?
Automation aims at automating the repetitive tasks of a process while hyper automation aim is to automate a process from end to end. While automation is an idea that accompanied human beings for centuries, hyper automation became achievable only with the latest technological developments. An important push to this trend arose from the pandemic: new digital-remote work setting accelerated the shift from automation to advanced automation.

Implementation best practices

In order to implement hyper automation in organizations it is fundamental to have a holistic business approach. As previously exposed, hyper automation aims to the automation of entire processes, from start to end. In modern complex organizations, these processes normally encompass different departments and activities. For this it is important to avoid a “silos” approach.
Moreover, the focus should be on scalability, in other words, on the ratio between the volume of demands and performance. Implementing hyper automation should ideally allow the company to skyrocket its performance in processes that involve large volumes of activities.
Having well-defined objectives when implementing hyper automatization is another key to success. The company should have a clear view of which KPI should be improved. This will allow to objectively measure results and margins at a later stage.
Each hyper automation journey should be shaped on the peculiar features of the company. Consequently, each organization should formulate their own mix of tailored tools, according to their specific growth aims.

Financial Services focus

Hyper automation represents a disruptive asset in numerous business activities that are fundamental in the Financial Services industry.
For instance, due diligence checks can be assisted by bots that keep track of regulatory changes, guaranteeing conformity to legal requirements and minimizing the risk of sanctions. Moreover, when the client onboarding process is automated, the possibility of inconsistent human behavior is reduced.
Leveraging on hyper automation positively influences data governance and reporting. Large quantities of data can be summarized and analyzed in an efficient way, giving more opportunities for gathering insights and for well-founded strategic decision making.
The impact of hyper automation on customer experience should be pointed out too. Clients’ needs and requests can be effectively managed, enhancing customer experience. This will reflect on the financial institution’s reputation and, finally, on the overall business development.

Luxembourgish instances

Some banks installed in Luxembourg are already enjoying the opportunities offered by hyper automation.
The English Group HSBC considers hyper automation as a key enabler to transform customer experience by a clever orchestration and streamlining of complex business processes.
ABN AMRO, one of the Netherlands’ largest financial institutions, created a clear organizational structure in order to centralize the management of hyper automation and eliminating duplicated efforts.

Finally, the Italian private bank Fideuram, as declared by its COO, adopted tools such as Robotic Process Automation and Artificial Intelligence “in order to stay abreast of the market and to continue to stay close to a clientele that evolves and changes at a rapid pace.”

Pros and Cons

Hyper automation brings enormous advantages to companies that decide to adopt it. The increased process efficiency represents one of these perks. Time reductions speed up business processes with positive impacts on costs. At the same time, clients can perceive an improvement in company reliability, as answers to their questions or requests are promptly and accurately provided. Consistency in processes and human errors reduction support the organization in meeting target KPIs or SLAs. The composability of the solutions allows companies to reuse and assembly components to create a coherent end-to-end business tool. This makes hyper automation an interesting instrument to add up to organizational agility.
On the other hand, the adoption of hyper automation should be carefully implemented.
The initial investment can be high, especially for relatively small organizations. In addition, some ancillary costs should be expected in order to maintain the systems and to train the employees on the new operating model. The fact that the solution is composable often implies a certain degree of complexity, that should be properly mastered by the company or third parties. Another aspect for consideration is the one about the biases that each algorithm inevitably replicates and embodies, as it is based on previous human inputs and data.
In conclusion, hyper automation is the new frontier of automated growth. Given that it represents a compelling challenge for companies that aim to stay relevant on the market, it is not risk free. Ethical concerns such as possible discriminatory outcomes, lack of transparency and personal data breaches represent the main elements against which the legitimacy of the trend must stand.

Any organization that claims to be at the forefront of innovation cannot ignore the challenges and growth opportunities offered by hyper automation.