Updated: Mar 9
London and New York — January 17, 2018 — Blue Prism (AIM: PRSM) and TrustPortal Solutions, have joined forces to deliver an integrated Digital Workforce that combines Human to Robot (H2R) technology with Blue Prism’s trusted RPA platform, enabling users to dynamically interact with any given automated process in real time. TrustPortal has integrated its secure, dynamic front-end user interface with Blue Prism’s Digital Workforce Operating System so customers can take advantage of a wide range of new automation capabilities resulting in a complete end-to-end experience.
These new capabilities unify front and back office processes while helping extend Robotic Process Automation (RPA) deployments to more complex and time-consuming work flows. By enabling real-time human interactions, organizations can collaborate and streamline decision making on any given automated process, including approval, sign-off, change and review.
By enabling digital services to interact with Blue Prism RPA, and allowing human interactions to be implemented by robot-driven workflows, this solution extends Blue Prism’s Digital Workforce to all functions across an organization. Front office employees and omnichannel customers can now utilize fully digitized, automated services to replace a wide range of manual customer service and technical support scenarios, increasing productivity without requiring cumbersome client installs.
“Blue Prism continues to expand its partner ecosystem to deliver best of breed capabilities on its Digital Workforce Operating System,” said John O’Brien, Research Director, RPA customer experiences, HfS Research. “The aim is to seamlessly integrate front, mid and back office automations, and dissolve legacy operational silos, which will drive better business outcomes and enhance customer experiences. Removing these artificial barriers through automation is a key plank of HfS’ Digital OneOffice vision.”
The TrustPortal/Blue Prism integration enables the creation of browser based dynamic forms, from any Blue Prism workflow, interacting process activities across multiple IT platforms including legacy systems, web front-ends, mobile applications and chatbots. Customers and partners also have the comfort knowing that all data transactions are highly secure, leveraging RSA private 4096-bit key encryption and Advanced Encryption Standard (AES-256) data security. The combined TrustPortal/Blue Prism solution is also highly scalable and provides drag and drop configuration to reduce deployment times whilst extending automation capabilities throughout an organization.
Customer benefits include:
● Increased Productivity: Dynamic front end increases front office productivity allowing for automated provisioning of Blue Prism software robots in real time while dealing with clientfacing operations. This speeds up the delivery of tasks and improves the customer experience benefiting both the customer and the organization.
● Easy to Use & Intuitive: Digitize legacy systems through new web front-ends, mobile applications and chatbots. This enables human interactions and decision making throughout the automation process helping streamline the decision-making process.
● Ultra-Secure: Leading encryption technology ensures that only authorized “key” holders can access the data and all data held in TrustPortal is secure (this includes UK Government / ISO27001 hosting and security, data in UK, AES256 encrypted).
● New Services Capabilities: Enables companies to rapidly deploy new automated services to their customers by building processes from the customer or front office environment across back office systems and operations.
David Moss, CTO and co-founder of Blue Prism, added that, “to scale RPA, organizations need an end-toend process view. Our partnership with TrustPortal delivers easy, secure & scalable front office assisted automation, powered by our leading, enterprise grade, Digital Workforce Operating System.”
Martin Meikle-Small, Managing Director of TrustPortal, commented, “our strategic partnership with Blue Prism will provide the market with new enterprise offerings which leverage the power of their Digital Workforce Operating System to offer unrivalled automation opportunities.”
About Blue Prism
As the pioneer, innovator and market leader in Robotic Process Automation (RPA), Blue Prism delivers the world’s most successful Digital Workforce. The company’s software robots automate complex work processes while meeting the requirements of the most demanding IT environments, where security, compliance and scalability are paramount.
Blue Prism provides a scalable and robust execution platform for best-of-breed AI and cognitive technologies and has emerged as the trusted and secure RPA platform of choice for the Fortune 500. Billions of transactions and hundreds of millions of hours of work are executed on Blue Prism robots from renowned companies including Aegon, BNY Mellon, Commerzbank, IBM, ING, Maersk, Nokia, Nordea, Procter & Gamble, Raiffeisen Bank, Siemens, Westpac and Zurich. For more information about Blue Prism (AIM: PRSM), visit www.blueprism.com and follow the company on LinkedIn and Twitter.
About TrustPortal Solutions
TrustPortal is a dynamic software company focusing on innovative developments in the Robotics Process Automation (RPA) industry. With proven industry wide solutions, TrustPortal is well positioned to become a world leader in enabling Human to Robot (H2R) digital services. TrustPortal’s secure and scalable solutions deliver new levels of productivity and cost savings to enterprise wide automation strategies.
Our industry tends to thrive on hype and marketing noise. I suppose that as industry analysts, we should be grateful for this state of affairs because much of our job is (or rather should be) about cutting through the smoke and mirrors. A key element in those discussions is guiding stakeholders on the shifts in technology and how these shifts impact the way organizations source and procure solutions and services. The life of a sourcing and IT services analyst used to be “easy”: We used to listen to the quarterly calls of sourcing advisors on the state of the outsourcing market, we found solid ground to tread on by collecting contract data, and the supply side was dominated by a select group of large caps that offered a good visibility because they were publicly traded companies.
Digital Is Chipping Away from the Sourcing Lifecycle
With the onset of “digital”, this comfort zone started to dissipate. The sourcing lifecycle underpinning those large deals began crumbling. As an industry, we never explained what was replacing this traditional sourcing lifecycle. Digital largely meant talking about SMAC technologies and getting hung up on customer experiences. HfS is tirelessly trying to change those discussions by talking about the Digital OneOffice – which is about changing mindsets to understand that “Digital” here is about connecting the back, middle, and front office to enable a digital experience.
Suffice it to say that this is not yet terra firma; large parts of the market are either stuck in the legacy sourcing world or are largely front-office-centric notions of Digital. Add automation to the mix and terra firma becomes a hazy daydream. The market appears stuck discussing RPA rather than the broader notion of Intelligent Automation. Unfortunately, the broader market is struggling how to scale those deployments.
Hold on! AI surely is the answer to all those unanswered questions, right? Machine learning will deal with unstructured data, chatbots will do all the necessary conversation, and you can even throw the big beasts of virtual agents, like Watson and Amelia, into the mix. Certainly, that will make sure all of the gaps and missing pieces of a process chain will be effectively dealt with!
Against this at times frightening amount of hype, it was cathartic sitting down with executives from EY to discuss the real issue: how to scale by integrating TrustPortal, a digital front-office and back-office platform with RPA. The discussions with EY were cathartic because it was all about the lessons learned on the automation journey, not about the aspirations or the hype of what innovation conceivably could do. The discussions were also intriguing as they were about the fundamental principles of the OneOffice, albeit in all but name. In contrast to many of its peers, during the early phase of the RPA market development EY shied away from positioning RPA as a silver bullet. By many it was positioned as non-intrusive, low code, intuitive for business analysts to handle, and low risk, but more than anything else it guaranteed short-term cost take out. Rather, EY was looking at how it could make RPA work with unstructured data and connect it with digital channels. EY was trying to scale RPA deployments and take a holistic view on automation by integrating a broad set of capabilities.
TrustPortal Connects RPA to the Front Office at Scale
In a nutshell, TrustPortal provides multiple methods for digital front ends to access legacy systems via RPA, which in the case of EY is through Blue Prism. The platform is completely configurable; forms can be created as objects through Blue Prism with no coding involved. TrustPortal had initially been built for projects in the public sector, so security and the ability to scale was a mandatory prerequisite.
An illustrative use case for TrustPortal is claims processing; EY suggested that clients could reduce costs by up to 90% for simple products, and irrespective of their legacy environment. To provide more color on this use case, all of the customer policy information and documents are available immediately in the portal. Customers can start the claim process online by entering only key information. A bot then starts the claim in the claim system (which could be a legacy mainframe application or a state of the art system like Guidewire). The agent can request additional evidence via the back-office use of TrustPortal, which the customer can provide by uploading files/taking photos to the online claim application. The bot then pushes the document into the insurer’s document store and updates the claim system workflow. If the customer has several products TrustPortal will notice when policy data is out of sync and ask the customer to confirm what is correct. Consequently, a bot will update all policies associated with that customer, which could start a new process (such as a re-quote). The customer will receive updates at all stages of the process and won’t have to call the service center, significantly reducing costs as 60% of all claims calls are chasing progress.
The configuration time for this approach takes about three weeks. In contrast to the significant costs for calling an agent (typically £10-£15 per call), the cost to run TrustPortal for all products and services is as low as £1 to £2 per customer, per year irrespective of the number of interactions or products. The technical details for scaling with TrustPortal’s “resilient queueing system that connects to BluePrism’s Dynamic Scheduler” are complicated and beyond the context of this article. What’s standing out as more important are the strategic approach of connecting front-office platforms directly with RPA and integrating broader cognitive capabilities at a competitive price.
TrustPortal Provides Color for How the OneOffice is Evolving
The title of this article is meant to grab your attention rather than to suggest there is a binary choice between a platform like TrustPortal and chatbots or virtual agents. On the contrary, EY is leveraging a broad set of cognitive tools such as ABBYY and Arago’s Hiro for parsing, Workfusion and Azure Machine Learning Studio for machine learning, and big beasts like Watson for a broad set of services including virtual agents and chatbots. This approach brings to life how the OneOffice is evolving: RPA is providing the digital underbelly while cognitive capabilities enhance the intelligent digital processes. As we have tried to outline in Exhibit 1, what it all boils down to is how a customer request is routed through a delivery backbone.
Exhibit 1: Routing a Digital Customer Request or Interaction
Source: HfS Research 2017
A virtual agent or chatbot can be part of that approach, but as we have suggested, TrustPortal can also be used to enhance most types of digital interaction including:
Web portal or Mobile Apps – either standalone, or embedded in existing sites
Chatbot, IVR, Virtual Agent transactions (e.g. enabling “how much is in my account” against legacy systems)
Contact-Centre Agents (enabling Blue Prism to provide agent productivity)
Back-Office Agent for work hand-off from RPA (e.g. RPA requesting approval, highlighting exceptions)
EY’s approach of leveraging TrustPortal is a compelling example for embedding RPA as part of transformational projects and not just applying RPA as a band-aid for process and media breaks in the back office. EY has yet to demonstrate to the broader market robust buyer stories and case studies to underline the validity of their strategy. We will follow up with more details once we have had the opportunity to speak to clients. It is also a reminder that the progress toward the OneOffice is all about service orchestration of disparate set of tools across the Intelligent Automation Continuum. Before the members of the RDA fraternity start moaning, it’s likely that the differentiation is the end-to-end process view along with the scale of the deployments. As always, HfS would love to hear about other examples for progressing toward the OneOffice – which explicitly includes the RDA community.