Implementing RPA: Challenges & Obstacles

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Change is never easy. There are always unforeseen difficulties when you start on a new path. Even if you’re getting great advice from those who have already forged the way, you still have to deal with your unique situation and challenges. So it goes with robotic process automation: the implementation process is bound to come up against obstacles.

The single greatest challenge with adopting RPA is getting buy-in from key players in your organization. Depending on the size of your workplace, it might mean pitching to the CEO or it might mean getting the head of IT on your side (the CIO in a large company). You’ve got to know the right channels to go through, but you can be positive that IT will be one of those channels. Getting RPA off the ground depends on them.


Maybe you’ve seen it in your own workplace or field, but RPA can get some really strong pushback. There are those who are dismissive (“What’s so different about this? Can’t we just use a macro?”), those who are hesitant (“Let’s play it safe and wait until everybody else has it before investing”), and those who panic (“It’s the beginning of the end of our jobs!”), to name a few viewpoints. You might also come up against concerns, especially in the IT department, that RPA will only add work to their already overloaded plates or that it will mean a loss of control over the way things are run.

For example, even though it’s a great thing that desktop automation like UiPath allows any employee to create their own workflow, some employees will complain about added responsibility and some IT staff will grumble about the lack of standardization in business processes.

These are both fair points. That’s why it’s so important to develop a strategic launch plan for RPA, complete with time for testing the software and training employees. You need to build a complete framework that addresses questions like: Who’s in charge of making changes to the workflow when necessary? Who decides when robots are scaled up or scaled down? How will you run quality assurance checks on the processes? Task a small team or committee with creating policies ahead of time to make sure all automation happens the same way or collects the same data. And educate your employees on the long-term benefits of having automation at their fingertips.

While the challenges for adopting RPA may seem daunting, keep in mind that it’s much different from any other IT change in the past. Switching takes mere weeks, not months or years. You can start small by automating minor tasks and easily expand when you’re pleased with the results. Plenty of organizations have implemented RPA, and we are happy to answer your questions as a service provider – you won’t have to walk this path alone.

Katie Behrens headshot
Katie Behrens

Client Service Representative, Arts People

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