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Now You Can Manage, Monitor and Create New BOTs with BOTs

Posted by: Chaithanya Pulugurtha On January 10, 2018 02:36 PM facebook linked in twitter

So, you have already embarked on an exciting journey with RPA (Robotic Process Automation). By now, you have identified processes which are viable for automation through RPA. While there are processes on the verge of getting automated, many others will follow suit, depending on how well the pilot runs.

For some, a virtual workforce to execute transactions earlier managed by a human workforce is now becoming a reality. With the power of this virtual workforce, you will be able to run or execute transactions/processes faster, make them error free and prove to be economical as well.

The next immediate questions which needs to be addressed is

  • How do manage the BOTs & what steps are required to perform & manage BOTs?
  • What does it take to manage BOTs?
  • Can I automate BOTs management as well?

Since most processes that get automated were earlier driven by agents, you now have the scope to free up your agents’ time and energy to unlock new value for the organization. It, therefore, makes perfect sense to automate operational transactions which are in huge in volume. Now let’s come to those tasks that are run by Team Leaders or Operations Managers or Administrators? Even in this case, many of their tasks are repetitive and there is a very good chance we can automate them. You must be wondering if there any solution or approach that can simplify these repetitive tasks? The answer is a big “YES”.

You can automate management of BOTs as well if you are smart enough to identify the steps involved in this process. For example, you can think about how to automate the very process of new BOT creation itself instead of wasting time and investing in hiring an expensive administrator.

Typically, on the operations floor, you would see Team leaders/Ops leaders getting involved and spending a decent amount of time on onboarding, monitoring/training, providing guidance to new members of staff, etc. If we draw a parallel to Administrators managing BOTs, we find similar kind of activities like creation of a new BOT.

When you deploy a BOT in production environment via an orchestrator/control room/ console, etc., you go through the following steps:

  • Naming nomenclature of BOT
  • Deciding the process/workflow required to be executed
  • Scheduling of the BOT – how and when it must execute transactions?
  • Placing Virtual Machine ID where the BOT needs to be deployed
  • Validating the environment in which the BOT must execute
  • Scanning the location of configuration files supporting the workflow
  • Configuration of Log files & reports

At each of these steps, you will realize - Most of these steps are repeatable and are defined by specific business rules & associated validations. Once you apply guidelines and create a BOT, it will be capable enough to recognize the input for the creation of a new BOT.

Done the right way, it can execute the BOT creation steps by applying business rules to successfully complete any given task. Such automation ideally saves about 3-4 hours of time per transaction for an Administrator. By creating a BOT capable of monitoring performance of other BOTs, you can automate any given function completely. This takes you to the next level of virtualization of the workforce.

Apart from this process, you can also automate other repeatable administration tasks such as Daily monitoring of logs, Activity of log interpretation, Locate & identify issues, Dispatch issues for resolution to the respective process owners. Although, these processes are a bit complex to execute, again these are driven by a pre-defined set of rules and follow a definite set of validations.

These activities constitute on an average 70% - 80% of an administrator’s time. All these processes/activities are repeatable and by automation, you will be able to free up Admin time and Admin focus on other critical activities that require application of cognitive thought.

Having said that, there are some risks which you might have to look out for:

  • Coding must be standardized
  • There should not be any need for hard coding
  • Best practice for coding has to be followed
  • Configuration files need to be deployed in a specific place so that the Admin BOT can pick-up with ease
  • Access credentials to the applications where BOT needs to be provided

Once you have streamlined the above-mentioned activities, consider that you have finally arrived with “BOTs managing BOTs”… Happy Automation!!!

About Author

Chaithanya Pulugurtha, RPA Principal Consultant, Tech Mahindra

Chaitanya has 17+ years of experience in business process consulting and advocating process automation in various domains like., Telecom, Banking, Manufacturing, Healthcare, Pharmaceuticals & Utilities. He is an Automation advocate & serves as a RPA Principal Consultant in Tech Mahindra. Chaitanya has exposure in areas such as process Consulting, Pre-Sales, exposure on various RPA technologies like, UiPath, Automation Anywhere, Blue Prism & Pega Robotics.

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