Buzzwords are everywhere – fads, methodologies and trends come and go, sometimes overnight. However, automation is one buzzword that deserves serious consideration for all businesses, especially in the highly regulated and ever-evolving Financial Services industry.

Welcome to the next instalment of our ‘Making the most out of your Microsoft technology stack’ series, where we will share examples that showcase the power of the Microsoft stack in delivering innovative, hybrid solutions to fit your organisation’s needs. This week, we will explore the benefits and use cases of Microsoft’s automation tool, Power Automate, with a focus on how Financial Services organisations can leverage this technology.

Automation is not a new concept by any means. Gone are the days of expensive, inaccurate or laborious automation – today we welcome low code/no code, elastically priced, scalable automation tools. These bring a whole new perspective on what organisations can achieve through automation without breaking the bank.

Power Automate’s cloud-based service provides a platform for users to create workflows to automate repetitive tasks, receive notifications, synchronise files and collect data.

There are two types of flows in Power Automate: cloud flows and desktop flows.

Cloud Flows

Cloud flows are workflows that run in the cloud and are triggered by events from various cloud-based services (such as Microsoft 365, Power Platform, Dynamics 365, SharePoint, OneDrive, and various non-Microsoft 3rd party tools) through the vast library of pre-existing connectors or bespoke custom connectors. These flows can be created, managed and executed from the Power Automate portal, and do not require any on-premises infrastructure or setup.

Desktop Flows

Desktop flows, also known as Power Automate Desktop, is a Windows-based solution that allows users to create and run workflows directly on their desktop. It automates repetitive tasks and processes that may not be possible with cloud flows, if for example they need to be undertaken or interact with on-premises technology. Desktop flows are ideal for automating tasks that require user input, run on specific schedules or need to interact with desktop applications like Excel, Access, or Windows. 

Automation, therefore, can drive huge time saving efficiencies and make employees’ day-to-day lives more productive and enjoyable.

Key benefits in using Power Automate*:

  • Reduced errors due to increased automation: 27.4%

  • Reduced workflow development effort: 17.2%

  • Faster time value realisation versus other solution alternatives: 25.1%

*According to Gartner's The Total Economic Impact of Power Automate report.

What are the main use cases of Power Automate that can spark excitement in the realm of Financial Services?

Customer onboarding

The customer onboarding process can be a time-consuming and manual task for banks and insurance companies. Power Automate can automate the process by creating a workflow that triggers when a new customer account is created. The workflow can then send welcome emails, verify customer information and update customer records in the database. This streamlines the onboarding process, improves the customer experience and reduces the likelihood of errors.

When automation is leveraged alongside the wider capabilities of the Power Platform, an impressive onboarding experience can be created. Read about our Virgin Money case study to find out more.

Power Automate icon

Loan and Insurance claim processing

Power Automate can automate loan and insurance claim processing by triggering a workflow when a loan or insurance claim application is received. The workflow can then route the application to the appropriate department for review, send reminders to customers to submit additional documentation and update the status of the application in the database.

This automation can:

  • Reduce the loan and claim processing time
  • Improve the accuracy and consistency of the process
  • Influence key metrics such as time to serve, the share of wallet and NPS and CSAT scores.

By leveraging automation via Power Automate, as well as wider Power Platform tools such as Dynamics 365 Customer Service, organisations can ensure that both user and customer experience is seamless, auditable and fit for the modern, increasingly digital-native customer base.

Compliance and regulation

Financial services organisations must adhere to strict regulations to maintain their licenses, whether through primary legislation, Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) regulations or otherwise. Power Automate can help ensure compliance by automating the process of monitoring and reporting regulatory requirements. For example, a workflow can be triggered to run a daily check of customer records to ensure that all information is up-to-date, stored securely and accessible in a single source of truth.

Historically, this would have been an incredibly manual process – borderline impossible to achieve on a daily cadence – due to the disparate nature of the systems involved as well as the governance ramifications that have led to data being held in on-premise systems. Today, by harnessing the power of Power Automate Desktop, organisations can train robotic automation models to work their way consistently through a workflow spanning multiple disparate systems to audit, reconcile and securely send compliance information to its intended location. Built-in notifications for success and failure metrics also ensure compliance is maintained.

This automation reduces the risk of non-compliance, ensuring that regulatory requirements are met and flagged where required, whilst avoiding a manual and expensive process across potentially multiple resources.

Make the most out of Power Automate today

In an industry where customer satisfaction and regulatory compliance are critical, Power Automate provides a powerful solution that can help Financial Services organisations stay ahead of the competition. With its ease of use, flexible integration options across both cloud and on-premise solutions and scalable architecture, Power Automate is a great investment  for Financial Services organisations looking to optimise workflow processes and enhance their customer experience.

For more information, get in touch with our team of experts today. Next up in our blog series, we will be looking at how organisations can make the most out of Dynamics 365 Business Central. Stay tuned!