Many automation journeys of companies start with the same intent; however, most vary from each other in terms of implementation and success. Some organizations take longer to implement the bots or face an unforeseen roadblock, while others scale and transform into a center of excellence (CoE) in the stipulated time frame. This difference can be attributed to the strategies required to assess and advance in the automation journey. That is why having a robust strategy across different stages of automation maturity is a prerequisite when thinking about maximizing RPA success. In a bid to help companies understand the steps at each stage, we have listed some steps to help you achieve the most out of your robotic process automation (RPA) investment.
Stage 1: Begin
Perhaps the most daunting step of any automation journey is the start. It is the first stage that requires heavy lifting in terms of management buy-in, change communication, RPA implementation vendor, process discovery, etc.
Also read: Why Choose An RPA Implementation Partner
You can consider yourself in this stage if you have automated less than 10 processes within one department. To scale to the next level here is what you should do:
- The first step is to identify the “low hanging fruits,” implying that you continue automating high-volume, repetitive, rule-based processes that require minimal dependencies and have low risk but maximum impact.
- Identify the tools: Set your RPA team up for success by determining the right training, courses and certifications required to get the job done.
- Measure, optimize and standardize: Create success parameters that allow you to accurately calculate ROI and a handbook that lists practices based on your experience with RPA.
Stage 2: Scale
The second stage of RPA maturity is scalability. Businesses can claim to be in this stage if they have already automated mission-critical processes, centralized governance, and realized the advantages of automation. If you are at this stage, you need to emphasize on:
- Getting executive buy-in: For scaling your automation journey, you need to create a list of your executive team that will champion more projects in the organization and increases your automation pipeline.
- Assigning responsibility: If you have a center of excellence, then this is the stage where you have to up-level it and assign more responsibility to the team members. Empower them to make decisions such as imposing company-wide governance and guidelines to ensure security and compliance.
- Continuously optimizing: Secure more funding and re-engineer operations, if required, to achieve the full potential of RPA.
Phase 3: Transform
The most advanced and complex stage, RPA process transformation includes end-to-end automation of several thousand processes and the application of intelligent automation (which is RPA combined with Artificial Intelligence). In the transformation stage, you continuously identify new automation opportunities to implement intelligent automation in complex tasks. If you are at this stage, then this is how you need to plan out your future automation journey:
- Centralized COE: Promote a centralized COE that encourages staff development through ongoing training, certifications, and various courses.
- Benchmark: It is important to measure, analyze and optimize each process to calculate and accurately measure the success of your RPA initiatives for the senior management and RPA sponsors within your organization.
- Strategic alignment: Create automation plans aligned with your corporate objectives and help the company achieve its short- and long-term goals.
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Irrespective of the stage of your RPA journey, there are several things you can do to advance to the next stage. RPA is not an end goal, but a means to achieve the objectives. These strategies are sure to take you to the next level. If you are in the last leg of your automation journey, then there are still immense opportunities to reduce costs, streamline processes, increase employee satisfaction and productivity as well as up-skill and up-level jobs.
To help you deploy these RPA strategies, contact one of our RPA experts today!