Robotic Process Automation, RPA, has not been here for very long. Back in May 2013, McKinsey predicted that robotic advances will transform life, business and the global economy. In a short time since then, RPA has made rapid strides across a range of sectors, so much so that RPA has reached a stage of maturity where it is now a must for companies determined to pursue a real competitive advantage vis-à-vis their competition.
Each company looking to implement RPA will have many questions they are looking for answers on, the main among them being the challenges faced when implementing RPA at organisations. This article shares what are the major challenges faced during RPA implementation, and how you as an organisation can overcome these. These are the top challenges an organisation faces when implementing RPA:
Let’s face it. We all want to generate revenue for the company, and by automating most processes that can be automated, we can bring loads of benefit. While this is important, keeping realistic expectations is key. It is not possible to adapt all processes in your organisation to RPA, at least not at first. It needs to be a step-by-step process.
Proper understanding of the organisation hierarchy and existing processes is key to identifying how RPA should be implemented. Based on this study, RPA implementation will need to be planned in a phased manner, starting with a single process to be automated, which brings us to the next challenge.
Prioritising processes for automation
Not all processes are suitable to be automated. It is necessary to identify processes with clear instructions, based on standardised or predictive rules. A good idea would be to pick a business process that is more stable, in that it is less error prone and has less manual intervention. An added bonus would be if the process has measurable savings that can be evaluated. Once the challenges that come with this process implementation is overcome, it is easy to plan on next process automations.
Managing employee resistance
A very known RPA challenge, and it pertains to all companies due to a simple fact, humans fear change by nature. Any change that accompanies implementation of a new technology is stressful as they experience shifts in their responsibilities. Frequent communication by business leaders will help employees know what is expected of them through the implementation process. This is key to essential adoption of RPA by the organisation.
Ownership and change management
The question on who owns RPA within the organisation, during and after implementation. Would it be the business teams or the IT team? It is imperative that both business and the IT teams are on this together. The business teams need to set goals for themselves to enhance the business processes progressively through RPA, by providing requirements that foster growth. The IT teams should work with the business teams to ensure use-cases are properly implemented and the infrastructure is stable for use of RPA across the organisation.
Industry-specific use cases
Your concern can be: will it take long to implement RPA at my organisation, given the processes at my organisation or sector are unique. The RPA has reached a mature stage within many sectors like Banking, Insurance, Healthcare, Energy, Telecommunications, Government/Public sector among many others. RPAs have in-built templates that are easily adaptable for use by your organisation. If processes at your organisation are different from those the templates, RPA tools can be adapted easily to your organisation process needs – with hundreds of drag and options available.
At the outset, implementing RPA might seem daunting. Yet, careful planning helps side-step these concerns and fully leverage what RPA has to offer. The competitive advantage RPA offers far outweigh the pain-points, if properly planned and implemented, and can give your organisation the boost it requires to pursue its competitive advantage.
Finesse provides smart RPA solutions to organisations across the GCC. Finesse has been certified as a Centre of Excellence for implementation of Automation Anywhere, a state-of-the-art RPA tool that has users across BPO, financial services, government and public sector, healthcare, insurance, life sciences, manufacturing, and telecommunications.
By Francea Lobo, Digital Business Analyst at Finesse.