• Implementing a robotics process automation governance model is essential to navigating the complexities and uncertainties of automating business operations.
  • Providers commonly offer unattended robotics process automation tooling to process large batch processes via set schedules.

Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is centered on automating repetitive and rule-based tasks by deploying software robots. These robots, or bots, work tirelessly on assigned tasks without the need for breaks, distinguishing them from human workers.

Nevertheless, the efficacy of any automation system hinges upon a robust governance model that ensures optimal speed, accuracy, flexibility, consistency, and scalability.

In this context, robotics process automation governance establishes a structured framework to steer planned business objectives toward successful outcomes.

This involves crafting a clear strategy for business processes, adhering to disciplined practices, demonstrating unwavering commitment to projects, implementing necessary tools for process enhancement, maintaining meticulous documentation, closely monitoring both human and digital workforces, conducting thorough evaluations, incorporating a robust risk management plan, and safeguarding operations through strong security measures.

In essence, governance models serve as the navigational compass, guiding RPA implementations toward seamless and efficient business operations. RPA governance stands as a pivotal cornerstone in the world of RPA, shaping the landscape for successful automation initiatives.

By establishing a robust RPA governance strategy, organizations unlock the true potential of automation and ensure a structured and sustainable approach that drives efficiency and innovation. How else can it help?

Why Do We Need Robotic Process Automation Governance?

As organizations integrate IT automation into their operations, a well-defined governance framework becomes essential to ensure RPA initiatives align with strategic objectives, comply with regulations, and mitigate risks.

Implementing a robotic process automation governance model is essential to navigating the complexities and uncertainties of automating business operations.

It grants authentic control over processes, safeguarding against failures, risks, and challenges when working with automated bots. This framework ensures the security and reliability of business processes, offering a well-structured roadmap for current and future objectives.

Any endeavor devoid of a genuine governance structure is prone to falter. Without a governing model, RPA processes can become frustrating, disjointed, and lack discipline.

Furthermore, RPA bots can access an organization’s sensitive data and information. Without proper regulation or governance, this can jeopardize the integrity of the business.

Hence, the importance of a robust, operational, and effective governance model cannot be overstated.

The “6×6 Robotics Process Automation Governance Framework” by KPMG serves as an all-encompassing roadmap tailored to steer through the complex terrain of RPA governance.

Within the realm of automation and human interaction, this framework acts as a guiding beacon, mapping out six pivotal dimensions across six foundational pillars.

What is the 6×6 RPA Governance Framework?

The highlighted differentiators in RPA are not stand-alone occurrences; instead, they are aligned with the broader trajectory of continuous digitalization and a growing need for adaptability and agility. Let’s understand the components of the framework better.

  1. Organizational Structure and Governance

For successful RPA adoption, careful planning of the organizational structure and roles is crucial, backed by a robust governance setup. RPA combines business process design, operational excellence, and Information Technology automation, making this aspect paramount.

Adjusting governance for flexibility, agility, and business-drivenness is wise. A common mistake is creating a new governance structure alongside the existing governance and control systems. Instead, it should be added to the governance framework to promote organization-wide consistency and collaboration.

Also, deciding between a central delivery team (CoE) and decentralized teams in business units is crucial. The differentiating factors in this situation are the trade-offs between specialization and control versus flexibility and business integration.

Properly designed reporting mechanisms, roles, and responsibilities are vital. Involving IT, Risk and Compliance in governance ensures robotic process automation compliance and controlled processes, boosting success.

  1. Process Delivery and Deployment

Process delivery and deployment encompass creating demand mechanisms from top-down and bottom-up perspectives. This involves setting up clear process analysis, selection, and delivery systems.

It is necessary to pinpoint which processes are feasible for robotization and align with our business case and value drivers. The key lies in integrating robotic process automation capabilities within a broader optimization framework.

RPA automation of end-to-end processes is uncommon, but maximizing value by automating the most transactional process components is frequently possible while improving the more difficult or inefficient manual process stages using OpEx, Lean methodology, or IT change requests.

The advantage of RPA in terms of delivery is the capacity to adapt swiftly to business needs and the fast pace of development and implementation. Apply some best practices, such as using correct development standards and conventions, to fully unlock these benefits. This enables the reuse of ‘building blocks’ and consistent ‘layering’ of the robotized processes, allowing for same-day business rule adjustments when required.

  1. Technology

In implementation, pivotal aspects encompass preparing the technical infrastructure, establishing application servers, configuring resources for robotic runtime, and aligning database settings for seamless test and production environments.

RPA introduces a unique emphasis on user ID and credential management. Addressing potential security vulnerabilities is essential as RPA mirrors manual tasks through employees’ graphical user interfaces. Robots might possess multiple system credentials, which could lead to fraudulent actions if compromised.

Mitigating this risk involves encrypted credential management and well-defined role separation agreements, ensuring a secure and efficient development process.

  1. Vendor Management

Another key success factor when scaling up to full implementation is selecting and managing the robotic process automation vendors.

There are many options for contract and license agreements, offered support levels, and service level agreements (SLA). In terms of offered functionality, significant differences exist between the various suppliers. Some specialize in so-called attended front-office robots, allowing individual employees to run ad-hoc processes in real-time, particularly suited for client-facing call center employees.

Providers commonly offer unattended robotics process automation tooling to process large batch processes via set schedules. A thorough analysis of the vendor requirements beforehand will be beneficial to finding the best-suited vendor for the given organization.

  1. Performance and Risk Management

Measuring and visualizing the benefits is important to manage the adoption of robotics process automation throughout the organization.

Formulation of the right KPIs is key; avoid focusing solely on work reduction, but concentrate on value-adding KPIs such as quality, predictable service levels, first-time-right, and client satisfaction.

Documenting automated procedures and writing clear process descriptions helps maintain control. This is a compliance and (external) audit requirement, but it also allows task handover and process maintenance and forces the CoE and business to frequently analyze production processes for improvement.

  1. People and Competences

Integral to successful implementation is a clear vision that justifies the need for change and outlines its impact on the workforce – this is the case for change.

Leadership must carry and communicate this case, serving as a prerequisite for two key outcomes: 1) securing adoption and cooperation from affected business units, and 2) ensuring clarity regarding expectations and how employees can actively contribute to and embrace the transformation.

Equipping employees to collaborate with and leverage robots is a vital aspect. How can we engage them and enhance their future employability?

Additionally, long-term resource planning is crucial: How can we effectively utilize existing staff and anticipate the required new skills? What will be the influence on current learning paths and educational approaches?

The introduction of software robots may also impact career paths and compensation structures for teams where both humans and robots collaborate. Hence, strategic workforce planning is pivotal in establishing a sustainable organizational framework.

Ultimately, employees will shift from pondering, “Will robotics improve my effectiveness?” to inquiring, “How can robotics enhance my effectiveness?” – marking the true fusion of robots and the workforce.

Closing Lines

Robotic Process Automation (RPA) streamlines repetitive tasks through software robots, offering a distinct edge over human labor. Yet, the key to RPA’s efficiency lies in the governance framework of robotics process automation, which ensures speed, accuracy, flexibility, and scalability.

RPA governance forms a structured strategy, steering business objectives and safeguarding processes against risks and challenges.

In this light, the 6×6 RPA governance on robotics automation emerges as a comprehensive guide to navigating the intricate governance of the RPA landscape. Illuminating six dimensions across six pillars paves the way for successful RPA adoption.

As organizations embrace automation, a well-defined governance framework must align RPA with strategic goals, adhere to regulations, and manage risks. It orchestrates an agile and secure future where RPA and human collaboration thrive.