Interview with the head of NFP RPA Department: how to prepare workplace for digital workforce

You should organize your business processes prior to RPA implementation

RPA is a relatively new way of business process automation using «software robots» which are capable of performing repetitive, clear and structured tasks: data gathering and input, reconciliation and consolidation, processing of standardized documents etc.

Nevertheless, the «simplicity» of RPA is two-sided: it can't be used if the business processes are not debugged and streamlined. Though the progress of technology development hasn't stopped yet: RPA is kind of a branch of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and you could have heard by now about concept called Intellectual PA – combination of RPA and AI.

During his interview attached to Russian «RPA 2019 conference» Head of NFP RPA Division Maxim Yatskevich has touched a few questions on topic of main RPA competitors.

- In my opinion, - he declared, - RPA has much brighter future in short perspective than other AI branches. Machine Learning (ML) technologies are just starting to show their application. From time to time ML is used as a solution for some pilot projects but those are far from industrial scale.

The main competitor of RPA is a human

- We are trying to replace a real human with RPA: when we discuss projects we always compare current results provided by manual work and potential boost of productivity with the usage of RPA. The second rival of RPA is so-called «classic automation» competing with it mainly in development and integration costs and delivery time, - said Maxim.

In Maxim's opinion other solutions of AI family are not in any way the barriers for wider RPA adoption, but actually vice-versa: they can be paired together in order to deliver synergetic results. If the «to-be robotized» process involves difficult and complex tasks like document processing, the Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology could be used. And even others like Deep Data, ML etc.

Though the Robotic Process Automation technology is considered to be at its popularity peak right now, Maxim is sure that it will find its place at common stack of automation technologies.

- It's not a secret that you'll always fall down from the peak. The real question is how badly you fall. You can go to the level of how Bitcoin plummeted or you can find your own spot among others. Between other factors the main disappointment in RPA can be the fact that it can't manage chaos. But the thing is - none automation can. Before RPA implementation all the processes should be regulated in order to fit it. That's why Robotic Process Automation is a good starting point for «Digital Transformation»: you should prepare the workplace for your digital workforce».
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