It’s a new year, which means new technological developments, especially in the realms of artificial intelligence, machine learning, robotics, automation and business software. As the new year begins, your organization may be considering investing in new technology, like a robotic process automation (RPA) solution. And we're here to say that that's a great idea!
Implementing new technology takes planning and careful prep work. And this prep work can't just be done by your team. It takes members from across your organization to make the implementation of RPA software a success. Here are our top tips to prepare for a smooth RPA integration in 2019:
- Get buy-in from the bosses. You don’t want your boss to simply give you the OK, sign the invoice and leave you to your own devices; you want them to be involved as much as possible in the process. Assuring that they understand the benefits of an automation solution will set you up for ongoing support in the future. If your boss clearly sees how the software will affect staff and understands how the software works, you can feel confident than you have a boss who has your back.
- Prepare your controller ahead of time. The controller is responsible for your company’s finances and, therefore, will likely be the person who experiences the greatest impact from an RPA implementation. This is because most RPA solutions are implemented into accounts payable or receivable departments - departments that traditionally process massive amounts of paper and are burdened by manual and tedious processes. By preparing your controller, you can ensure that processes and procedures are honed and ready to be automated so that they can set them and forget them. Remember: RPA does not improve inefficient processes, it simply makes inefficient processes faster. So, before you even install automation software, check in with your controller and make sure that staff and procedures are ready for implementation of RPA.
- Understand that RPA doesn’t eliminate humans. Make sure your staff knows the impact RPA will have on their jobs. The common misconception is that RPA will make human employees obsolete, replacing them with sci-fi-style robots. However, while automation will replace some tasks, the idea that the human worker will be unnecessary is far from the truth. It will not eliminate the need for the one thing humans have that machines don’t: cognition. Letting your staff know this is important to assure them that their jobs are not being lost to the robots. In fact, RPA will free up their time to focus on more high-value projects rather than menial tasks.
- Mitigate risk and set yourself up for opportunities. There is a risk with any big software implementation, but by preparing yourself for those possible risks and mitigating them before implementation even takes place, you can set yourself up well for the opportunities that RPA technology can bring. Preparing your current processes and procedures before implementation, gathering a team from various departments to be involved with the implementation, and setting attainable goals for both hard and soft ROI is essential.
New year, new tech. Prepare for your technology resolutions with these RPA implementation preparation tips and tricks!