What Is Intelligent Process Automation (IPA)?

5 minute read | 05 Jan 2024

By Boomi

Your business can’t afford to fall behind when it comes to increasing technological efficiency and using innovation to solve problems. However, finding the right solution to optimize and streamline your complex business processes is challenging. You need a versatile and precise approach – in short, intelligent process automation (IPA).

This technological breakthrough combines the ability to deal with routine, repetitive tasks and complicated decision-making. IPA empowers organizations to automate a broader range of activities and enhance productivity. Discover how IPA revolutionizes business operations by harnessing the synergy of RPA and AI to tackle diverse challenges, from data entry to sophisticated decision support.

What Is Intelligent Process Automation (IPA)? 

IPA is a cutting-edge technology that integrates robotic process automation (RPA) and artificial intelligence (AI) to streamline and optimize business processes. IPA combines the rule-based, repetitive task execution capabilities of RPA with the cognitive abilities of AI, such as machine learning and data analysis.

This allows IPA to automate a more robust range of tasks. IPA enhances efficiency by automating routine tasks and offers advanced analytics and decision-making support. This makes it a powerful tool for organizations seeking to improve productivity, reduce errors, and drive innovation.

Technologies Used in IPA

Technologies used in developing intelligent process automation include:

  • RPA (Robotic Process Automation): Software robots or bots automate rule-based, repetitive tasks in business processes.
  • AI (Artificial Intelligence): Systems capable of performing tasks that typically require human intelligence, such as problem-solving, learning, and decision-making.
  • ML (Machine Learning): A subset of AI that focuses on developing algorithms and models that enable computers to learn from and make predictions or decisions based on data.
  • NLP (Natural Language Processing): A branch of AI that enables computers to understand, interpret, and generate human language, allowing for interactions with text and speech data.
  • Computer Vision: AI that enables machines to interpret and understand visual information from images or videos.
  • DPA (Digital Process Automation): Automates end-to-end digital processes, often involving complex, dynamic, and rule-based workflows.

What’s the Difference Between IPA and RPA?

The primary difference between IPA and RPA lies in their capabilities and scope. RPA is primarily designed for automating rule-based, repetitive tasks, relying on predefined logic, rules, and structured data. This makes it suitable for processes with clear, repetitive steps.

IPA leverages RPA and AI technologies to handle a broader range of tasks, including unstructured data, complex decision-making, and dynamic, variable processes.

Benefits of Intelligent Process Automation

IPA offers many advantages for businesses. It enables better resource optimization by automating processes, allowing organizations to allocate human resources more strategically. This leads to significant cost savings by eliminating repetitive tasks, freeing up valuable time for employees to concentrate on more strategic and innovative endeavors. IPA also ensures greater accuracy in tasks, reducing errors and enhancing the quality of work. Its scalability empowers companies to automate additional processes as needed. By streamlining operations and reducing errors, IPA enhances the overall customer experience, ultimately improving satisfaction and loyalty.

What are Examples of Intelligent Process Automation?

There is a growing number of use cases for IPA throughout various industries. In the insurance sector, IPA can be used to analyze claim data and identify patterns indicating possible fraud. Insurance companies move more swiftly and with greater accuracy in detecting irregularities.

In the healthcare industry, IPA is crucial in extracting information from invoices, meticulously validating details, and routing them for approval or payment. This streamlined approach reduces administrative overhead and ensures the accuracy and timeliness of payment processes.

In human resources, IPA automates the screening of job applicants. By analyzing resumes using predefined job qualifications, IPA efficiently surfaces the most suitable candidates, freeing HR teams to focus on the most promising applicants. IPA can also streamline onboarding processes and create better employee experiences.

In the dynamic ecommerce landscape, businesses can engage IPA to trigger inventory replenishment and forecast future demand. This ensures businesses can efficiently manage their stock levels and meet customer needs effectively.

Implementing IPA in Your Workforce

The Boomi platform makes it easy to leverage IPA in your organization. Boomi’s core strength lies in its ability to seamlessly integrate systems, applications, and data sources across complex organizations. This connectivity empowers IPA, by unifying disparate systems to ensure a smooth flow of data and processes.  Boomi paves the way for reduced manual intervention, minimized errors, increased accuracy, and optimized resource allocation. With Boomi, your organization can enhance operational efficiency and develop a competitive edge in today’s fast-paced business environment.

See how IPA bridges data gaps in our ebook, “Why Supply Chain Analytics Are the Key to a High-Performing, Resilient Supply Chain.”