Robotic hand touching a screen and controlling robotic arms in the background represents hyperautomation.
#Currency Management

Stepping closer to hyperautomation

Global Trends
6 Mins.

Automated processes have become intrinsically ingrained in almost all industries across the globe, including the cash industry. In order to make processes even more efficient, secure, and adaptable well into the future, experts are now looking beyond automation to the next step: hyperautomation.

Of all the strategic technology trends transforming industry in 2020 – from human augmentation to autonomous things – Gartner believes that one trend trumps them all: hyperautomation.1 While automation consists of a series of repetitive processes done without manual handling, hyperautomation goes a step further by utilizing artificial intelligence, machine learning, and data analysis to augment workers and provide a greater impact. Hyperautomation extends across a range of automated tools, while also increasing the sophistication of automation through analysis, designing, measuring, monitoring, and reassessing. Hyperautomation should integrate functional and process silos to automate and augment business processes, and enable organizations to visualize how functions, processes, and KPIs interact to drive value and business opportunities.2

Robotic process automation (RPA) conducted by software robots, complemented by AI and machine learning, is the key ingredient to effective hyperautomation. This would provide unprecedented levels of insight into operations by creating a digital twin of the organization (DTO), making previously unseen interaction between processes visible.3 Smart algorithms and continuous intelligence collected about the organization and its processes allow automated machines to learn and find new ways to improve and optimize processes even further. This could result in unprecedented cost savings and efficiency gains.

The road to a hyperautomated cash cycle

Hermann Gessler, Head of Global Pricing and Consulting in the Currency Technology business of G+D, says that hyperautomated cash centers will be more error tolerant and make processes much more flexible: “Hyperautomation is about analyzing the flood of information that can be taken up by the digitalization of process chains and coupling this flood back into the process. For the cash industry it can reduce processing times, optimize logistics processes, and reduce the overall cost of cash. This will guarantee cash as a competitive form of payment long into the future.”

Hand taps on tablet screen with imagery of small robotic machines and icons and text representing the hyperautomation of cash cycle
With AI, a larger share of software and greater integration will help to make automated cash centers hyperautomated

Gessler believes that although the cash industry so far is only using proven and solid automation technology – due to its small size and high security requirements – hyperautomation is undoubtedly picking up speed, and in the next few years will likely begin to be integrated into various functional areas. “This will require significant rethinking in the market and standardization of interfaces,” he adds.

The cash industry is already starting to think beyond the cash center in terms of standardized transport boxes that can be used by multiple players, implementing a software layer that helps cash centers to meticulously match capacity with demand, optimize transport routes, and streamline logistics. This higher share of software is one of the main elements that separates hyperautomation from automation. Another important element is AI. Sophisticated AI algorithms and machine learning have the ability to eliminate bottlenecks or repeated errors, identify problems sooner, and automatically trigger service maintenance, which would result in more integrated processes and fewer interruptions in the process chain.

“If the weakest link isn’t working, then everything in front of it is useless“
Ferenc Szelenyi
Managing Director and Group Vice-President for the Currency Technology business of G+D in Middle East and Africa

The importance of integration

One thing that is already taking place is integrated cash center solutions – optimizing processes from the outset via thorough analysis and sophisticated technology and maintaining seamless operations with constant reassessment. Ferenc Szelenyi, Managing Director and Group Vice-President for the Currency Technology business of G+D in Middle East and Africa, worked on a project for the central bank of Rwanda, which involved designing and implementing the first fully automated vault management system. This meant that banknote processing operations, including supplying cash to the country, were conducted in the optimal way.

“The project in Rwanda showed us that integration is fundamental to getting the best value out of each solution, and also to optimizing the overall process chain in the best way,” said Szelenyi. “You can have the fastest automated vault in the world, but if you can't get the money in and out of the vault in the best possible way, it will be the wrong investment. If the weakest link isn’t working, then everything in front of it is useless.”

Gaining insight through software

Analysis – both at the outset of a cash center rebuild or revamp and continuously through software – is the key to such effectiveness. “You need to look at how much money the country needs at which points in time, consider inflation and population growth, and analyze logistics and distribution in the country before you can optimize processes. Utilizing software allows you to analyze and continually optimize business processes and address customers’ specific needs at each stage of the operation,” remarked Ferenc Szelenyi.

Aside from the advanced technological requirements, hyperautomation also requires a specific mindset: a willingness to embrace change at the most fundamental level, invest in new technology, and implement end-to-end integration. This will deliver long-term increases in efficiency and security as well as an overall reduction in the cost of cash. Although it will take some time for the cash industry to get there, integrated, automated processes intertwined with an intelligent software layer are already becoming the new norm. These standardized and collaborative processes must become the standard before greater steps towards hyperautomation can be made.

  1. Gartner, “Top 10 Strategic Technology Trends for 2020,” 2019

  2. Appian, “Gartner – Move Beyond RPA to Deliver Hyperautomation,” 2019

  3. Analytics Insight, “The Future of Automation Belongs to Hyperautomation,” 2020

Published: 13/10/2020

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