Around 50 years after the wave of industrial automation, the digital transformation is permeating all sectors of economy and all areas of business. Robotic Process Automation, the processing of digital routines by software robots, is proving to be the superstar among transformation technologies.

We are all aware of physical robots from many different industries: Since the 1970s, they have been assembling vehicles and aircraft as well as electronic devices, testing reagents and packaging food. They work fast, error-free and precisely. They cost-effectively increase productivity and create high quality standards for car manufacturers, pharmaceutical companies and food wholesalers. The degree of automation is continuously increasing globally, and Germany is at the forefront of the race: With a robot density of 309 per 10,000 human employees, Germany ranks third among the most automated industrial nations after South Korea and Singapore.

Automation in a digital context: trend technology RPA


In the digital age, the next wave of automation is rolling through the corporate landscape and the robot is evolving into the digital assistant. Similar to their siblings in industrial production, software robots take on high-volume, standardized routine jobs – and give companies a competitive edge by performing previously manual tasks faster, more efficiently and automatically around the clock. This can be the digital co-worker in the customer service department of an energy provider just as much as the virtual clerk in the financial accounting department of a car manufacturer: all sectors of the economy and all corporate divisions contain recurring, highly regulated digital processes and thus enormous potential for automation. Consequently, companies in the DACH region with an affinity for automation are already investing heavily in the trend technology RPA: According to an ISG survey, more than half of the companies surveyed were piloting their first RPA projects in 2019, and around a third were already automating up to ten processes. For 2020, two thirds of the companies have 10 to 25 process automations on their digital agenda.

RPA Business Cases: Jobs for Digital Employees


Software robots are used across industries and departments, with current focus on finance and controlling, purchasing, logistics, supply chain and customer service. Suitable business cases are well-structured processes that contain a series of repetitive work steps that can be described with the help of clear rules and that are currently carried out by humans via user interfaces. Typical tasks include searching, collecting, summarizing and updating data, making simple decisions based on precisely defined criteria and transferring data from one system to aenother. Such monotonous, error-prone “swivel chair” tasks consume large amounts of resources – these are the jobs that software robots do better and more efficiently.

We have identified and implemented a wide range of cross-industry and cross-functional use cases for RPA in numerous customer projects. Draw inspiration by gaining an overview of the wide range of possible applications of software robots and the positive effects for every business: