How to Scale Automation?
A digital workforce is a scalable team of software robots that supports and augments the work that employees are doing. The robots can be set up to take on any repeated process that a human would follow. Most business leaders have accepted that workforce digitization and automation are inevitable and all companies will need to make the changeover sooner or later. That means redefining jobs and how work is performed and measured. In some cases, they take over the entire workflow, freeing up human workers to do more strategic, high-value work. In other situations, it’s useful to have humans and software bots working side-by-side. Leadership will need to build a compelling vision for the organization whereby the Digital Roadmap is positioned to embrace, stakeholder management and employees.
Laying the RPA Foundation….
Building an effective digital workforce requires the right software, people and attitude. RPA software should always start small. With the right software, you will be able to add more robots—in other words, more physical or virtual machines with your automation software installed—as needed. The new robots should be quick to set up and adjust. You’ll also want to have certain enterprise-class functions to help simplify automating at scale. These include security and audit features, detailed analytics and dashboards, and cloud automation capabilities.
Sometimes automation projects are held back by the fear that an expanding digital workforce means a shrinking human workforce. RPA will actually provide better opportunities for human employees by taking over tedious, manual, tasks and freeing up time for more strategic work that adds value to the business.
Identify Automation Opportunities….
So how do you determine if your organization or a particular process is ready for RPA? Typically, we’ve found that the processes ripe for automation all have several qualities in common:
- High volume transactions/activities.
- Use multiple systems or dual-data entry.
- Involve searching, collating or updating information.
- Require the matching or comparing of data.
Think outside the box. Each department is often concerned with its individual challenges, but the best automation opportunities might span multiple departments or locations. Sometimes it’s useful to have humans and software robots working together. Don’t be afraid to automate a process end-to-end if possible. The goal is to take the boring, “robotic” work away from your skilled workers to give them more time for the things that need a human touch.
Robotic process automation makes it quick and easy to add more robots and automate more processes. But make sure you’re getting the best ROI possible. A few suggestions for keeping your growth strategic are:
- Create reusable automation templates and process documents.
- Don’t let your robots mimic human inefficiencies—optimize your workflows before you automate.
- It can be easy to set and forget your automated processes, but make sure you check back in regularly about whether each workflow is necessary and optimized.
Employing a digital workforce allows the human workforce to take on projects that are both more useful and more rewarding. Software robots are efficient and accurate. They don’t take vacation or sick days, and they don’t get bored. Scaling your digital workforce doesn’t mean you have to recruit and train new employees.
Some advantages of using RPA:
- Offers huge cost saving when compared to employing people to do these tasks.
- The robot (virtual FTE) can outperform a human on quality, speed and error rate metrics.
- RPA will enable companies to manage existing databases quickly and accurately.
- Additional cost efficiencies due to learning curve; potential further accumulative cost reduction of up to 20% over time.
- Productivity & efficiency – far more accurate and quicker.
- Business Continuity.
- Ability to route work to alternative servers/ computers in other locations/ security.
- Reduce/ minimize human factor for fraud, intrusion and malpractice.
- Compliance, Data & processes can stay onsite.
- Sensitive data can be hidden from people, processed by machines.
- Continuous Learning & improvement.
- Disaster recovery.
More than Just Cost Savings…
Automation is not just about cost savings efforts – the impact is much broader which include Capacity, Reliability and Service Level improvements. Given the efficiencies RPA can deliver, our clients have started re-examining their operating models and IT investments with a fresh perspective. RPA is clearly a solution for current processes but beyond that, it can drive a level of efficiency that can potentially redefine future processes and operating models.
JifJaff is a specialised RPA/AI consultancy. We design, deliver and manage RPA solutions. JifJaff provides a horizontal/impartial view of the RPA/AI market – please contact us for more information.