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Disney Cast Taking Guest Experiences to Next Level with Innovative Robotic Tech

Jenna Tsakas

by , Communications & Experience Manager, Technology & Digital

On the Technology and Digital team, there’s a group of magic makers working behind the scenes to transform business processes using software and physical robotics, ensuring their fellow cast members have more time to create meaningful connections with our guests. As part of Global Recognition Week, I’d like to share some of this amazing team’s work!

Just under a year ago, a small group of technologists were brought together to form a new technology team known as the Business Process Automation (BPA) team. The concept for this work came from an executive challenge, asking this group of innovators to find ways to reduce the amount of time cast members across the company spend on repetitive tasks, to give them more time to focus on guests.

“Our guests don’t always see the innovative technology solutions our teams are putting in place, and that is by design,” said Pradeep Krishnamurthy, Vice President of Technology. “We have numerous teams in Technology and Digital who are working behind the scenes to create stress-free magic not only for our guests, but for our cast and crew as well.”

The team of technologists got to work implementing a Robotic Process Automation (RPA) platform – technology that can mimic monotonous tasks by using machine learning to read and process documents, mimic human interactions with systems and perform common machine-to-machine tasks.

My Disney Experience App Park Entry and Robotic Arm

While a cast member would previously need to step away from interacting with guests to process transactions or enter data into a computer system, which might take several minutes multiple times a day, adding up to hours each week performing repetitive tasks, that cast member can now fast-track these tasks by leveraging an automated workflow. Then, they’re free to get back to interacting with guests!

“The innovative automations and robotic solutions our amazing team create truly inspire me; removing impediments and freeing fellow cast members to focus on what they love to do: creating magic for our guests,” said Sean T. Murphy, Senior Product Manager on the BPA team.

In less than a year, the team has grown from five to nine cast members and is now taking on physical robotics as well. Sean and his fellow cast members identified almost 200 different use cases across the company where they felt RPA could give teams time back to focus on guests. Since starting on this journey of cast service less than a year ago, multiple business areas benefited from the BPA team’s support and expertise.

One of these areas is Disney’s Premium Services, where Business Manager Kim Gunther saw firsthand how advancements in technology like process automation can bring efficiency to cast behind the scenes.

“The Automation team enhanced our business efficiency by providing an innovative process improvement to a previously time-consuming workflow, freeing valuable resources so our cast can more readily assist our guests,” said Kim.

If you booked a trip on Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser, planned a gathering with Disney Meetings & Events, or stopped by Guest Relations for help with a Lighting Lane reservation, the BPA team was behind the scenes, making the process that much smoother for you and the cast members assisting you. These technologists are on a mission to minimize the time cast spend on digital and physical tasks, so they can turn their focus to guest interactions.

Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser and Lightning Lane

While members of the BPA team may not customize a celebratory button for a child, help a family with directions, or create magical moments for guests, they’re leveraging technology in a way that enables cast across the company to do these things and more with the hours they have back in their days.

Thank you to Sean, the BPA team, and all the cast members working behind the scenes to spread magic to our cast and guests!

Comments

  • “’The Automation team enhanced our business efficiency by providing an innovative process improvement to a previously time-consuming workflow, freeing valuable resources so our cast can more readily assist our guests,’ said Kim.”

    It’s like Walt Disney once said: “Disneyland will never be completed without improvements to previously time-consuming workflow as long as there are valuable resources in the world.”

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