Key decisions in an RPA Implementation

RPA Implementation
RPA

Transforming business and implementing process automation is a strategic approach. Any gap or incorrect decision can impact the desired RoI. Let us have a look at some of the mistakes organisations make while implementing an RPA project are-

1- Wrong Tool selection
2- Incorrect process selection
3- Gap in Risk Identification
3- Incorrect Planning and financial Modelling

What should organisation do, To avoid such failure-

A typical Pre-Sales road-map for any RPA project all through includes the following project initiation steps-

1- IVP-Initial Value Proposition
2- Due Diligence
3- Solution Designing
4- Contracting
5- Implementation
In each of the above stage several decisions have been made but there are few critical decisions which decide the success of RPA Implementation.
Some of the key decisions in the above stages are –

1-Tool selection for automation-

Tools need to be identified based on the complexity of your process and its business value,It’s done in Due-Diligence stage.

If there are lesser number of FTE (Full Time Employee) working on your business processes and replacing your feasible processes with RPA is not giving RoI then there is no point going for a commercial tool like AutomationAnywhere or BluePrism. In such cases identify a free available tool like
UI Path, Workfusion.

On an average, RPA tools need 23 hours to develop 100 steps (L2 Process Map). However, such numbers differ occasionally as per complexity of L3 process map. L3 Process map is derived from L2 Map. There can be chances that the derived L3 Maps from an L2 map are complex in nature and that the web/desktop controls are more than average in number. In such cases effort mentioned above (23 Hours) can be increased.

Below are the values of tools individually-

Ease of Development– How easy is it to create a Bot in the tool
Ease of Handover-How easy is it to handover Bots from one person to the other for maintenance

2-Correct Process Identification for automation-

Finding correct candidate for process automation is the next critical step as the success of RPA largely depends on the correct automation candidate. If a process with inappropriate automation candidate is chosen it can ruin your effort and result in failed RPA implementation. There are chances that a process may not be fully automated and that some manual intervention may be required. Therefore, option to partially automate a process also needs to be considered for such cases. Certain tools have features to handle such manual intervention business cases.

Detailed analysis needs to be done with Subject Matter Experts of business processes. Some of the examples of good automation candidate are-

a) Repetitive tasks which are structured
b) Tasks that are rule based
c) Tasks that have definitive output

3-Risk identification

An RPA implementation without proper Risk Identification and mitigation planning is prone to failure. To identify risk it is required to have detailed L3 process map available for all processes which are good automation candidate.

Based on the L3 Process Map risk and related RPN-Risk Priority Number can be identified.
How to identify RPN Risk Priority Number of a process?

RPN = SXOXD
S-Severity of risk in a process
O-Occurrence of the risk
D-Depiction of the risk

After the RPN number is identified, mitigation plan needs to be created.Mostly development efforts are increased just to handle identified risk in a process as mitigation action

4-Financial Modelling

Now comes financial modelling which helps in identifying and calculating Profit and Loss of every RPA Implementation. If L3 process map is defined in detail then the same reduces chances of failure as well as correct development effort can be identified. During financial modelling every aspect of process execution needs to be taken care which can help in correct effort calculation and financial modelling. There can be pre-execution stage when data preparation activity is required and post execution activity like re-conciliation.
Before every Implementation, detailed cost benefit analysis and financial modelling needs to be done which can help in bringing figures (savings) however if an organisation is implementing RPA for the first time these figures might not be the actual achieved figures after Implementation.

If organisations keep on implementing RPA financial modelling actual benefits can be achieved. However, for this pre implementation needs to be done wisely. While designing solution, mention detailed L3 map that will help in identification of risk and RPN –Risk Priority Number.

Summary-

Unlike other automation, RPA is quite simple and structured. If it is planned with correct approach huge savings can be achieved. Looking at the current transformation which the industry is experiencing RPA can soon replace human tasks which are standard and rule based in most of the clerical processes.
Next level of RPA will be Smart Process Automation (SPA) which will be artificial intelligence enabled and that can even replace human intelligence.

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