Andrew Howe, Chief Officer for Digital & Technology, hacks our Transformation Zone to tell us about a new piece of technology currently being developed at Aberdeen City Council – RPA.
When our collaboration with Microsoft was launched in August, we promised regular updates on the work of the team that’s embedded alongside our own within the Council.
The ambition behind the partnership is to harness the expertise of Microsoft and bring that together with the knowledge our own service experts hold about the processes carried out in every corner of the organisation – with the aim of innovating to free up resource to focus on key tasks and devote more time to customers.
One of the first areas the Microsoft team has immersed itself in is the opportunity within the Council to embrace Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and to benefit from the efficiencies the technology provides.
Following initial discussions with Chief Officers, services have been working with a team of business analysts to identify processes which would benefit from RPA being applied.
These are processes that are typically:
- High in volume or time to process
- Arrive in a structured format (e.g. through an online form or spreadsheet)
- Require data to be keyed into one or more system
- Are ‘rule/logic driven’ as opposed to based on individual discretion
To help highlight the opportunities RPA presents, a series of Lunch and Learn sessions are being offered by our partners to get people thinking about the way RPA could be applied across all areas of the Council.
These sessions will include some demonstrations of automation in practice and will also offer you the opportunity to hear from Chief Officers and managers who have already begun their automation journey. You can also learn how the automating of a process takes place– from the high-level design and detailed capturing of the process through to testing and sign off.
Although a number of potential options have been identified for early adoption, there are likely to be many more opportunities for RPA to be applied widely and the ideas and inputs of employees and teams will help shape its future use to better meet the needs of our customers and staff.
To find out more about RPA and its role in Council’s future, register for one of the sessions.