Robotic Service Orchestration (RSO)
Whether you crossed the automation chasm early, or are just starting your journey into digital service delivery, you’re not alone if you’ve got questions surrounding technical ecosystem choices. Generating ROI—and how exactly to go about proving the value of numerous small automation projects versus one giant re-platforming initiative—is a common challenge.
Open vs. Closed Ecosystems
Towards the end of 2017 and early 2018 we attended the ‘UiPath Forward: The User Summit on RPA at Full Speed,’ in New York, London and Bangalore. The conference offered valuable insights surrounding automation and digital service delivery—here are our key takeaways.
The ‘Automation Odyssey’ is About to Begin
In 2017, organisations started to get serious about automation. Research from the wider automation industry has revealed a lot about how businesses are developing and controlling their automation programmes. I was recently at the RPA (Robotic Process Automation) and AI (Artificial Intelligence) in BFSI (Banking, Financial Services and Insurance) show in London; here’s a snapshot of the top automation concerns amongst the event attendees I spoke to:
Using a diverse set of intelligent automation tools together to achieve your business aims isn’t always easy. More often than not, it involves figuring out how to integrate these different tools in what can become a very complex IT project.
In 2009, I was a Director in the Project Management Office at Blue Cross/Blue Shield North Carolina, when we launched an initiative to build a Robotic Process Automation (RPA) application that mimicked the functions of human claims examiner. Overseeing a team of eight software engineers, analysts and testers, we developed a robotic engine and, over the next 18 months, systematically expanded the application’s capabilities.
Three blogs in already and we have yet to tackle the elephant in the room: what precisely is robotic process automation (RPA)? Basically, RPA is a new type of software that acts as a virtual workforce. It is configured to replicate the activities previously carried out by human workers, delivered by ‘robots’ or ‘bots’ or ‘virtual engineers’. There are a number of emerging software providers that sell RPA platforms, such as Blue Prism, Automation Anywhere, UIPath, OpenSpan and others - including some of the large outsourcing companies.
In our quest for robotic process automation (RPA) enlightenment, we will come across a lot of speculation and hyperbole on the way. In such a young industry this is perhaps inevitable, but on this journey we will try to separate the wheat from the chaff and pick out real evidence as much as possible. Let’s start as we mean to go on: Last month I saw the most startling and fundamentally new demonstration I have yet encountered of how RPA is turning the old world of outsourcing upside down.
Automation is unquestionably the flavour of the month in business chatter today. Robotic process automation (RPA), and a storm of other smart automation approaches like Artificial Intelligence, are being pitched and perceived as the NEXT BIG THING, akin to the emergence of outsourcing some 30 years ago, and offshoring 15 years ago.