5 Critical factors to a successful RPA implementation

What is RPA

Robotics Process Automation (RPA) is the change you need to boost your performance. This is a technology that allows us to automate processes mimicking the employee’s actions on their computer (laptop or desktop). The automation doesn’t require changes in your systems but lays on the top of your currents systems (ERP, BPM, Core Banking) interacting with them.

How RPA helps your business

RPA will help to your business to decrease the resources in the execution of the daily routine tasks and free up time for a better human Customer service as well as you can re-distribute your workforces towards increasing the Salesforce capacity. With RPA you can automate many processes of yours like downloading, input, transfer and validation of data,  generation of documents, writing letters and emails and others in the areas of Customer Service and KYC, Operations, Compliance, Finance, AML, Risk Management, Human Resources, Sales.

What should you be careful about while planning and implementing RPA

You can implement RPA for some of the processes for a really short period of 3 months. However, this sometimes misleads and RPA implementation project could be underestimated. Here we go with the 5 tips which can help you to achieve the expected improvement.

Tip 1: Preparing the RPA Business Requirements

Before preparing the Business Requirements Specification for the automation make sure that you carefully reviewed the processes you are going to automate. The step before the design of the automation should always be the process analysis and improvement. It would be a wrong approach to automate the process as it is. In the process analysis phase, you will find many steps which it’s better to change or skip, simplify templates, decrease exceptions and optimize the process. The more standardized your process is more benefits from the RPA you will gain.

Tip 2: Deep Process Understanding

Deep process understanding and listening to the process owners will guarantee the proper incorporation of the business needs in the automation. One of the most important things is to understand the “reason and result relation”- why the employees are currently performing the specific activities and what is the outcome. Hence, you will identify why some steps are critical for the business and how you can redesign them increasing the productivity and leading to the best results of the automation.

Tip 3: Details in the process

Detailed describing of the process in the Business Requirements Specification is of great importance for the precise delivery of what you have ordered. Put enough effort and attention to this step of the project. This is the document which will be the guiding light for the development team. You have to describe the requested “To be” process in deep details. Each part of it has to be clear. Then it will be reproduced correctly by the Robot after the automation goes live.

Tip 4: Handling the Exceptions

Here is the rule – The fewer exceptions you have in the process the greater impact you will achieve with the automated process. Handling of exceptions requires significant manual efforts. Even if you can automate most of the process steps, the number of the exceptions plays a critical role in the process efficiency of inefficiency. Keeping too many exceptions is contradicting the idea of a lean process.  That’s why the best approach is to decrease their number and to make the process simpler. All exceptions that you can’t avoid – try to specify them extremely precisely. Decide whether there is an option to either automate them as an extension to the core process, or you will continue to perform them manually.

Tip 5: Project Management

Last but not least – the strong Project Management is always a prerequisite for the success of any project. In the RPA projects, it is even more important because of the short timelines of the projects. In a 3-4 months projects, there is no room for deviations from the plan. Each deviation will put at high risk the delivery within the planned and promised dates. It is harder to control all activities. Many of each are really short-term and performed in less of a day. And because of the projects never run smoothly you need to be ready for an extreme flexibility and fast reactions to the changes.

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Written by Milena Ribarova