3 Steps to Jumpstart Your RPA Journey
Robotic process automation (RPA) has become a hot topic across several industries because of its ability to digitize operations and boost productivity. RPA is a high value, low-risk technology that can integrate with underlying systems through the user interface to automate high volume, transactional processes. Essentially, RPA mimics the work of a human sitting at a keyboard.
If you’re wondering if now is the time to evaluate your business processes, the answer is YES. Currently, RPA has the greatest foothold in financial services and the IT sector, and is also growing in manufacturing, government, healthcare, retail and telecommunications.
The maturity of RPA technology and how it’s applied to business applications is advancing rapidly. In the next five years, companies will shift towards cognitive computing, where robots aren’t just simulating human tasks but human intelligence. We’re in an exciting time where we can carry out business processes faster and more efficiently at a lower cost.
So where do you begin with deploying a virtual workforce? Here are three key steps that will help your company get started with RPA:
1. Find the Right Processes to Automate
Assess which processes are the best candidates for automation. Every process that can be automated may not be suitable for an RPA implementation. Focus your efforts on low-level tasks, or low hanging fruit, that has the highest potential to deliver outcomes you want. In summary, get the quick win. Accounting, customer service and human resources are a good place to start.
Whatever you choose must make sense from a technology and business standpoint. This initial step is key in getting your stakeholders on board with the project and its objectives. Automating the right processes with the most significant business impact will ensure your project gets off the ground.
2. Prioritize Change Management
A digital transformation in how your business operates can be a disruptive force for your organizational culture if employees are disengaged from the initiative. This includes project management and the core competency your company needs to effectivity adapt to a changing industry. It’s important that every member of your team understands the value they play in implementing change from an individual and organizational perspective. Employees should be engaged at all levels, so they understand the opportunities for more rewarding work. By prioritizing change management, staff will embrace change more quickly, allowing for a smoother and quicker adaption of RPA technology.
3. Partner with an RPA Expert
Let’s say you have all the key stakeholders on board in moving forward with automating certain processes. You may be tempted to jump right in and deploy the software yourself after the sales pitch from an RPA vendor because it can be done right on your desktop. But, that’s where RPA projects can go off track and take longer to implement.
Companies often waste time and effort with deployment because they have programmed dysfunctional processes, or selected the wrong tool. Processes require a degree of standardization or redesign during the automation journey. An expert can help your company standardize business processes, determine the right tools needed for your back-office needs and quickly identify automation opportunities. Additionally, an RPA advisor can provide guidance on the best approach to implementing change across the organization.
Once the software is up and running, you’ll notice how easy it is to add and modify new processes.
Start building a roadmap with RPA that will transform your business. Starting with small wins will lead to long-term opportunities for greater gains. Identify opportunities for new areas of growth so that your company meets the shifting needs of the market and your clients.