Procurement and RPARobotic process automation (RPA) is software that automates manual and repetitive tasks. It works by mimicking human activity and replicating it as the user takes actions. When it comes to RPA, procurement leaders see the biggest return from their investment when it comes to repetitive, time-consuming, lower-value processes. These include contract management, category management, risk management and supplier relationship management. This article explains the process in more detail: read it here. RPA’s main goals are to cut costs and free-up procurement’s time to partner with the business on more strategic matters. In spite of this, recent studies show that procurement organisations are at a very early stage in understanding how RPA technology can help automate their processes. Just 8% of procurement teams are using RPA — and 73% still have no plans to adopt RPA at all. The benefits of using RPA are obvious, and the implementation costs are not as high as many companies would expect. It might just be a matter of teaching organisations how to get started.
Where to begin?When talking to procurement leaders, the interest in RPA is obvious, however, for many of them the challenge comes from the lack of expertise and proof of concept needed to implement the technology. Here are some steps to help procurement leaders take the first steps to adopting RPA.
- Draw lessons from other departments
- Evaluate opportunities for automation
Remember: When going through the evaluation phase you should also determine the type of data that will be necessary to train the robots.
- Incorporate RPA into your procurement strategy
- Create a solid business case for RPA technology