Building your RPA Business Case
Producing a robust business case is vital to engaging the support of senior executives. A business case should demonstrate the opportunities, alternatives, project stages and financial investment required to generate business value through the use of RPA.
Why is a business case needed?
When the time is taken to develop a solid RPA business case, the investment proposal can be presented in a clearly defined plan as to what can be achieved and the timeline of when the benefits can be realised.
An RPA business case typically outlines the following:
- Key objectives of the RPA program and how this will align to company strategy
- Clearly defines the business needs
- Provides important background and supporting information to put the RPA investment into context
- Describes how the investment into RPA aligns with the organisation strategic business plan
- Provides a robust estimate of the whole-of-life costs of the investment, and the financial benefits
- Outlines non-financial benefits
- Describes the approach to be used, including timelines and resources
- Summarizes the risks, including how they are likely to affect the RPA program and outline actions to mitigate them.
Things to consider when building an RPA business case:
- All costs of the RPA programme vs. the lifetime benefits that will be achieved not just year one e.g. if the process is required to be run for 5 years then you need to calculate 5 years benefit of not employing people into those roles for 5 years
- Always calculate on a fully loaded salary benchmark
- Focus on financial benefits first but don’t forget the other non-tangible benefits of RPA, such as risk avoidance, revenue drivers, improved data quality, quality improvements, reduction in human error and service to the customer (Net Promoter Scores)
- Do not select the most complex processes to start your RPA journey, as tempting and beneficial, as these are likely to be your pain points, this is it will impact your speed of delivery and the length of time to achieve ROI. You need to learn RPA with high volume/low complexity processes before you move into more complex processes
- If you are building your CoE from the beginning, ensure you have a strong case for the investment required vs. the length of time and effort to achieve ROI
- Ensure your IT costs are factored in, e.g.
- Virtual Environments.
- Application Servers.
- IT support.
- Database Servers.
And finally, it is recommended you outline in the business case how you will track the all associated benefits of the RPA program and how you plan to communicate these to the investment sponsor.
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