Being Strategic with RPA and your Organization
- April 22, 2019
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If you are looking for signs that RPA is catching on, look no further than the fact that the Wall Street Journal is covering it. In this article, the author examines how Intuit leverages RPA bots to improve their business in an article titled “Intuit CIO: Be Strategic About the Bots You Build”.
Eighty-five percent of CIOs are investing in automation software deployments over the next two years, according to the 2019 CIO Survey from Grant Thornton LLP in partnership with the Technology Business Management Council. Seventy-five CIOs were surveyed from companies that ranged in size from fewer than 1,000 to more than 10,000 employees.
As you might expect, after two years of investment, with sponsorship from the highest levels, Atticus Tysen, CIO of Intuit, has some advice based on what he’s learned, that I think we can all learn from:
- It can’t be IT-driven. Mr. Tysen encourages collaboration with business and IT to get the job done. I would note that he doesn’t say to do it without IT either – I think given he is on the IT side of the house you can assume he is advising CIO’s and IT personnel to bring the business into the process.
- Start with a small team. This is great advice for the adoption of any new technology – it gives you a chance to build organizational knowledge in a core team, from which it can spread.
- Teach the business how to build bots. In the same way that the business will have folks who make critical spreadsheets, they’ll have people who have a knack for creating useful bots – and you want to empower those folks.
- Rethink how a process works. “The biggest challenge is getting employees from various business divisions to step back and rethink how a specific process works and which parts of it should be automated, Mr. Tysen said”
I’ll add a bit of advice that wasn’t included:
Pick something that matters. Your organization may have all the money and people in the world – you may feel that you’re organization isn’t resource constrained. But *all* organizations are constrained in terms of how much focus they have. So spend that focus on something that really matters to your business. If you need to build a bot for a test or learning exercise, pick another one that you know will have significant impact on your team’s perception or ROI. Don’t waste the opportunity to make an impact!