Why you should avoid overcomplicating business automation

Why aim for a rocket ship when you can’t even fly properly?

Robotic Process Automation is complicated. With so much venture capital investment; confusion surrounding where a robot starts, AI stops and all the bits in between (like Task or Process Mining, Monitoring); multiple vendors, start-ups and big companies getting involved; messages around whether it’s low code, do it yourself, or if you need a specialist developer/consultancy or have it delivered as a service; Tailoring the robots yourself to integrate with your systems or the connections from an automation superstore of pre-built API… It’s no wonder there’s so much noise in the business space and horror stories around business automation gone wrong.

It’s painful to listen to again and again. We like to keep things simple. Don’t run before you can walk. 

Despite what you may have heard, automating operational processes cannot be done by a Business Analyst or developer alone. Would you let an entry-level BA run payroll or accounts for the finance team with no training? If not, how can you let them build robots to run them without accountability?

There are two questions you need to ask yourself before investing in automation:

Phase 1: why am I interested in automation?

Simple answer:
I can use it to support my business and do more with fewer people. It has potential to reduce my salary bill, improve the quality of work (robots don’t make mistakes) and have the capacity to cope with busy periods. Increase my business resilience, so I’m not reliant on people to do my business admin.


Phase 2: what is my budget and the potential return on investment for automation?


Simple answer: Do you have the capability internally to approach this most critical phase correctly?  Without training (RPA COE frameworks), the answer is no- trust me. 


What choices do you have to get your business automation implemented?

 Option 1: Use a consultancy to implement this for you.

Result: A good option if you have something complicated to build and your new to automation.
Long term, it is an expensive approach as you will have multiple processes to automate and support. Long term, it’s best to have an internal support function (such as a COE), as you will use the bots to support various teams.

 Option 2: Undertake some training and acquire a basic framework to deliver through to do this yourself.

Result: a no-brainer. Do you believe that automation will be useful? If yes, then learn how to use it properly. RPA is just a tool; people who have success see it that way. Have a few people automate things as required, tweak/ change, and longer-term projects to automate bi-operational processes. 

Option 3: a mix of the 1 and 2. 

Result: also a no brainer if you’re in a hurry or want to start with critical processes to automate. Learn to integrate intelligent automation yourself through a framework (RPA COE) and ramp up quickly with our support.  


Don’t overcomplicate things. Yes, we can use bots to automate/learn/build themselves, train/test themselves- people, fly but is that what we need now?

Will we ever get round to seeing any value if the expectation is to have a rocket ship when you haven’t learnt how to fly yet.

Look at what you’re missing out on if you don’t pick the right things to automate and plan to do it properly.

Business Process Automation works!