We have reached a point where automation is a way of life. Today Robotic Process Automation (RPA), Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IOT) and all things cognitive blend seamlessly in our day-to-day activities. In fact, we have become so used to automation that it has led a massive shift in the way we think and strategize, giving rise to the “‘Automation First’” era.
‘Automation First’ – as the name suggests – can be defined as an approach, strategy or mindset which moves beyond traditional operational strategies and keeps automation at the nucleus, while integrating it with other aspects like people, technologies, processes and so on. It has made democratization of cutting-edge technologies such as RPA, AI and Cognitive even more imperative.
So, what’s democratization?
Simply put, democratization of automation means making automation accessible to everyone. It involves delivering opportunities and benefits of automation to each employee at every level. Democratization is the first step in creating an ‘Automation First’ culture in your organization. As enterprises grow and expand to newer geographies and remote locations, sharing of standardized processes, different technologies and diverse frameworks becomes difficult yet key. For any organization to be collaborative and inclusive, involving employees in decision-making process is important.
Leaders do not have visibility into every minute detail of all the aspects of the organization. When employees are equipped to think from an ‘Automation First’ point of view and have access to democratized automation, they start to notice the minutest anomalies in their day-to-day tasks and can come up with the best ways to resolve them. Together, this has a very inclusive impact on the organization’s digital transformation journey.
Democratization of RPA in an organization
Any organization can bring about RPA democratization by taking the following steps:
- Making RPA trainings accessible for all the employees
- Giving them access to RPA software & tools
- Inhouse talent creation by training the trainers who’ll in turn train more people
- Empowering them with a bot-buddy to try out automation use cases on their own. This also increases the employee affinity towards automation
- Creating Automation Champions – the Go-To people who drive automation across different locations
- Creating a shared community/forum where employees can share their experiences and use cases real-time on how human-bot convergence makes their work easier and better
- Creating an internal Bot market to share ready-to-use bots, thus leading to quick automation adoption
- Hosting Innovation days, Botathons to encourage healthy competition and awareness
RPA Unicorns have been consistently highlighting the importance of democratization – be it Automation Anywhere’s One Bot Per Employee slogan or UiPath’s Forward III agenda, which heavily emphasizes how the world’s most disruptive companies are adopting the ‘Automation First’ mindset. If you think about it, automation has more to do with the human experience and less about robots. Democratizing automation positively significantly impacts how employees feel about their newer, better roles. Going forward, democratization will be the key to successful organization-wide automation programs and will prove to be the door-opener to new business opportunities in the digital world.
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