- As you'll recall, I described organizations as a natural product of their history. What I mean by that is, as organizations naturally grow, expand, acquire and evolve, they inherit complexity. They do this in order to support the business as it grows, often by implementing systems, software, processes, and teams where necessary. What results is often a spaghetti of systems and processes that consume a great deal of time to maintain and support. What comes to mind are, immense enterprise applications that are often pulling from even older mainframe systems, are altered by modular Bolt-On applications, enhanced by necessary Homegrown plugins and patches, all to support inefficient workflows that have evolved organically over the years.
If any of that sounds familiar, rest assured, you're not alone. This is the scene I've encountered countless times before. As I study a company's current state, I can't help but imagine an enterprise archeologist digging down layer by layer, uncovering historical artifacts and evidence of prior eras as they go. Working with an organization can bare similarities that actually are not so absurd. Depending on the industry and business function, it's not uncommon to come across mainframes, green screens, fax machines, COBOL, and a raft of Homegrown Excel Macros, Access databases, and even Post-it Notes documenting everything from passwords to work procedures.
To deal with this excitement, enterprises employ people. Passionate, hard-working people who do what we call swivel chair integration. Manually receiving and transcribing faxes, executing wrote transactional processes, and performing repetitive tasks. But, the fact remains. These tasks have to get done. It's just how businesses run. And in the last two decades, organizations have looked to solutions like shared services and out-sourcing to handle this work effectively and efficiently.
But there's a new disruptive option available. By using a class of automation technologies, including RPA, the routine, mundane, and transactional are all ripe candidates for digital transformation. Enterprises realize there's a huge opportunity to unleash value by conducting this work a different way. In a way sometimes referred to as the fourth generation of work.
- Explain what swivel-chair integration includes.
- Recognize when RPA would be most effectively employed.
- List the factors to consider when evaluating different RPA software.
- Name the three stakeholders who benefit from RPA in a triple-win model.
- Recall the two factors used to evaluate the merits of a process becoming automated.
- Identify subtasks that can disqualify an entire process as an RPA candidate.
- Summarize why automation is not always a good choice for a process.