Five Steps to Scaling RPA
Learning to scale Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is crucial to realizing the breadth and depth of value it can deliver to your organization. The growth of RPA has been extraordinary. CMSWire estimates that the RPA market was valued at $250M in 2016 with 12X expected growth by 2021, equaling ~$3B.
The reasons for RPA’s success are measurable. An RPA software robot never needs a bio break and always performs what it is trained to do without a mistake. RPA also permits businesses to automate at a cost dramatically lower than previous strategies and in a fraction of the time of manual efforts.
Employing these automated mechanisms, and integrating them into any functioning system, is straightforward. Robots are easily trained to perform tasks seamlessly, providing feedback and reports on their actions, and offering useful and actionable data. They yield a nearly immediate competitive edge for businesses while also promising long-term benefits.
A high degree of flexibility and customization with RPA technologies makes it an ideal solution to implement and scale. Scaling your RPA can result in better accuracy, improved compliance, realized cost savings, and increased speed and productivity.
According to Gartner, RPA is the fastest growing technology that they track. Yet, scaling RPA success is one of the oft-mentioned challenges.
Best Practices for Scaling RPA
Scaling your RPA efforts requires a few, critical actions. Here are six guiding points for efficiently and responsibly realizing your RPA expansion goals.
RPA Success Starts Here
While RPA solutions are best-suited as an enterprise-wide, or automation-first, approach, initial implementations should not be exhaustive. Start with departments in the enterprise that are more likely to accept and benefit from automation. You may consider, as many organizations do, back-end operations like human resources or finance. Successes in these departments can be leveraged to further progress towards broader application in front-end operations.
According to Gartner’s Predictions for RPA and Hyperautomation webinar, “By 2023, there will be a 30 percent increase in the use of RPA for front office functions (sales and customer experience).”
Onboarding RPA Requires a Collaborative Approach
Soothing fears and anxiety, early on, is critical to onboarding RPA smoothly. Adopting automation of any kind depends on the cooperation and support of employees. But, it is common for employees to fear their jobs being replaced by robots. Clarify that RPA is intended to offer support and assistance. Employees will be empowered to focus their skills and experience on higher-level goals rather than the tedious responsibilities that will be managed by RPA. Ensuring the confidence of your staff will go a long way toward bolstering efforts at scaling RPA. Hybrid, or collaborative, human-robot teams are the inevitable wave of the future and it’s best to position it for long-term integration.
Create a Clear Vision for RPA End-State
We can’t predict the future, but we can broach the future with as much intention and effort as possible. Your plans to scale RPA should begin with an explicit view of your end-state goal. It takes time and commitment to implement and scale RPA. Having a clearly-defined path will steer the teams who implement, maintain, and use RPA towards a common goal.
A clarified operating strategy for scaling RPA enables the IT department — or an external RPA consulting team — to provide needed support for distributing software and writing scripts, managing configuration, and maintaining security access.
Govern RPA via Intelligent Automation CoE
RPA solutions can be stifled before evolving past the development and testing stages. Governance is a common and critical roadblock to RPA success and expansion. Establish an intelligent automation Center of Excellence (CoE) to oversee policy development and adherence, as well as assist with the selection of tools and vendors.
Scaling RPA Depends on Where You Deploy
How you choose to scale RPA has a lot to do with where you decide to employ it. One of the most efficient ways to benefit from RPA is to apply automation to your organization’s most complex areas, processes, and functions. The operational processes that occur among departments and business units are commonly more dynamic. These complexities create an ideal environment for RPA to thrive. Scaling automation in this way will also encourage further collaboration, assisting in the development of an infrastructure that is viable for scaling RPA.
Cloud Accelerates RPA Value
Any effort to scale RPA should consider the advantages of engaging cloud systems—especially large-scale RPA. Expanding RPA requires broad accessibility and easy integration, enabling businesses with little or no history with technology to produce software bots customized to their business needs. Cloud-based computing is a fundamental resource for IT infrastructure due to its widespread use by businesses worldwide.
The cloud provides quick, easy, and adaptive functionality. A single click can make it possible to deploy extra bots for sudden spikes in volume, giving users the power to quickly automate jobs with just a drag-and-drop action. Cloud-accessible data and software accelerate the value of nimble and precise RPA bots.
The Future is Human-Robot Collaboration via Intelligent Automation
Scaling RPA strategies and solutions will give your business a technological edge. They empower growth while cutting costs and streamlining operations by supplementing or replacing human activities and maximizing human contributions on higher-value tasks requiring intricate skills, creativity, problem-solving, and strategic thinking.
Explore high-value use cases in your enterprise with our team of RPA experts.