Robotic Process automation (RPA) is one of the top ten technologies that every CXO of the world is asking for. In the running decade, the market of RPA has grown faster than popular technologies like analytics, CRM and ERP. Every big of small organization is keen to keep up in the race of automating there back and front office processes to enable a true digital workforce.
While the demand of RPA is more than what various RPA service providers could supply, it is definitely taking toll on the quality of implementation. Moreover, unlike implementation of other technologies like ERP and CRM, the domain knowledge act as a less vital criterion while choosing the right RPA implementation partner, but decision makers are still counting on the traditional IT project awarding norms for RPA as well.
To aid this dilemma here is a compiled a list of parameters and scales that you need to ask your list of shortlisted service providers before awarding RPA project to one of them.
- Commercial Model
The primary objective of implementing RPA is cost saving. Implementation partners proposes various commercial models to create an army of bots for you. While discussing these commercial models, you want to ensure that you get promised cost savings and your service provider wants to ensure that it gets paid for services efforts fairly.
The thumb rule in this is to prioritize the service provider that puts more skin in the game than the others. In other words, choose the service provider, who is ready to guarantee promised cost savings before sending invoice to you and puts payments dependent upon benefit realization in the payment terms. This reduces the risk of robotic process automation implementation and establishes the service provider as your chosen partner in implementing automation projects related to your domain.
- Bot Maintenance Model
Failing bot is like stopping of an assembly line. The productivity immediately drops and defeats the purpose of your automation. Understand your process criticality, it’s running shifts and your SLA needs. For example: If a bot fails in a front office where a human agent is dependent upon that bot to verify signatures immediately while processing a cheque, the SLA to repair that bot will be very short compared to a back office bot that runs during night to upload previous day’s data in a core system. While selecting right bot maintenance partner, closely compare their offering to your needs.
- RPA Platform partnership
Most of the RPA service providers partner with platform providers. These platforms award service providers with various partnership levels like silver, gold, platinum. These partnership levels are earned by maintaining a required number of certified developers, solution architects etc. in their practice. So, while selecting, you can give more points to the service provider who has better level of partnership with the platform of your choice.
- Ready-to-Deploy bot components
When bots are implemented for any application, a large number of reusable components get created. An experienced RPA service provider will have a good library of bot reusable components in their RPA practice. For example, if a service provider is experienced in automating SAP, they will maintain multiple SAP reusable bot components. So, while selecting your implementation partner, you can incline towards the one who has better bot library for the applications you are targeting to automate.
- Delivery Plan
An experienced RPA service provider will always prioritize straight forward processes that can be delivered in short period of time, over complicated processes. Bot delivery plans should always prioritize small benefits early rather than targeting big benefits from a complex process.
- Process Reengineering
A bot is a magnifier of a business process. If you automate an inefficient process, it will magnify its inefficiencies also. So before automation, a process must be looked from the eye of process reengineering. More points to the service provider who show’s capability and interest in process redesign along with automation capabilities.
- Bot decommissioning
For most organizations, implementing bots is more of a tactical solution to speed up the operations meanwhile there more strategic solutions kicks in and start giving results. If your organization is also following similar plan, then ensure your bot lifecycle is planned comprehensively by your implementation partner. Your partner must layout plan for bot decommissioning after the bot expires and helps in transitioning operations from bot to new strategic solution.
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