CIODigital Disruption

3 Ways Robotics Affects the CIO Role

A survey has found that IT decision-makers believe that “59 percent of business processes can be automated in the next five years,” so the challenge right now is just to figure out how to get there. Robotic process automation (RPA) is one of the next big frontiers for IT. In an article for the Enterprisers Project, Dennis Walsh pinpoints three ways that RPA will affect the CIO role moving forward:

  1. Added opportunity to be strategic change agents
  2. Renewed focus on people and training
  3. Demand for long-term thinking


About that first point, Walsh writes this:

From back-office operations in finance to procurement, supply chain, accounting, customer service, and human resources, nearly every position within an organization is plagued with at least some monotonous tasks. For CIOs, this opens up an opportunity to unite the business with IT and spearhead strategic change with RPA.

Having evolved far beyond screen-scraping technology of the past, robots are now customizable, plug-and-play solutions that can be built to an organization’s specific needs. With such a process-centric approach, companies can automate not only tasks previously executed by humans, but also application and system-specific tasks, such as ERP and other enterprise applications.

Along those lines, it is important to emphasize to the workforce that RPA/automation exist to make life easier for the employees using them. Toward that end, CIOs should identify ways to upskill employees and build training programs to make optimal use of automation. Any solutions that are landed upon will have to be built with a long-term focus in mind; in other words, they will have to be scalable.

Any RPA implementation that begins from a standpoint of “Let’s reduce the headcount around here as much as possible,” is going to be met with massive hostility, and it will not yield the best results anyway. So cast aside any notions like that before you begin.

For additional thoughts, you can view the original article here:

John Friscia

John Friscia was the Editor of Computer Aid's Accelerating IT Success from 2015 through 2018. He began working for Computer Aid, Inc. in 2013 and grew in every possible way in his time there. John graduated summa cum laude from Shippensburg University with a B.A. in English.

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