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February 27, 2020

Robotics Process Automation(RPA) - Priorities, Benefits, and Considerations for CIOs

By CIO Council Support

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By: CIO Council Support

On January 15th, The Federal RPA Community of Practice released version 1.0 of the Federal RPA playbook highlighting 6 themes as a primer to the world of RPA. These themes include

  • getting started;
  • ensuring collaboration;
  • establishing goals;
  • investing in process and improvement;
  • balancing governance and productivity; and
  • thinking strategically.

These are the basics when considering how your agency can pilot projects with RPA. Prior to this playbook being released, the CIO Council’s Innovation Committee developed a white paper to provide a strategic overview of RPA for CIOs and technology leaders throughout the federal government. This differs from the RPA playbook in that it provides a broader strategy versus discrete implementation and maturity guidance. Both of these artifacts are useful to the technology community when considering RPA.

The white paper takes a look at the benefits of RPA, use case categories, and considerations for CIOs.

Benefits of RPA

The benefits of RPA can be vast when used correctly. As the RPA playbook notes, RPA can be a good tool to meet The President’s Management Agenda (PMA) Cross Agency Priority (CAP) Goal 6, “Shifting from Low to High Value Work.” RPA allows agencies to automate or enhance tasks which allows employees to focus on higher value-add work. This can lead to:

  • cost-savings,
  • decreased need for large-scale IT transformations,
  • increased accuracy,
  • increase productivity,
  • increased scalability,
  • low cost implementations, and
  • a shift to high level work

RPA Use Case Categories

The RPA White Paper AND the playbook outline many use cases across many categories such as acquisition and procurement, customer service, human resources, IT management, internal operations, technology enhancements, accountability and audit and data analytics.Take a look at each for a broader understanding of how RPA can and has been used.

Considerations for Agency CIOs

Finally, the Innovation Committee’s white paper outlines a list of considerations for agency CIOs. These considerations include:

  • Developing a bot governance plan
  • Collaborate Government-wide on Bot Sharing Platforms and Tools
  • Consider RPA Market Factors
  • Prioritize Bot Credentialing
  • Join the RPA Community of Practice
  • Workforce Considerations

We hope you read the RPA White Paper and use the RPA Playbook in your projects going forward.

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