Recognise automation opportunities to avoid project abandonment

Photo by Octavian Dan
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The Aito Evaluations feature may seem simple on the surface, but it's a powerful reminder that every idea is worth exploring.

We read every day about new competitors in various business sectors, some close to home, many others in far-flung corners of the world. They are cast as innovators who drive progress and disrupt industries. They are bank startups, plant-based food manufacturers, media streaming networks, electric car designers, and so on. There are so many stories, it's easy to get an inferiority complex. Yet, for every successful business we hear about, there are so many that go unnoticed by the mainstream press. The truth is, hundreds of thousands (probably millions) of ideas and projects are regularly abandoned.

You may feel good about this because it means there's hope for you yet! It's a reminder that everyone is human and that your idea or project is just as good as anyone else's. But it's actually a shame to see so many ideas go unfulfilled due to unnecessary obstacles such as expense, scope creep, disagreement, complexity and uncertainty.

Aito CPO Tommi Holmgren mentioned this recently in his article, 'Evaluating intelligent automation use cases has never been this easy', when he said: "Good automation opportunities remain untouched."

And he's absolutely right, often because of the obstacles mentioned above, but also because of not recognising an idea or opportunity, which then goes unexplored.

How to avoid project abandonment

My experience working on various creative or business projects over 25 years means I've seen the ups and downs of project management. Great ideas crashed and burned before they even got going, while mediocre ideas flourished because they were the easy option. And while I've been writing about automation for the past year or so, I've noticed a similar pattern. Opportunities to automate processes are going unexplored because it's so new, potentially difficult, expensive to implement, or whatever other reason you can think of for not doing something.

The truth is that these are human frailties. The good news is that we're in the robotic process automation business, which takes care of our doubts and lets us explore new ways of working! For instance, we have a feature built in to Aito's main console that enables an RPA engineer to preview a potential automation use case using real data. It's called Evaluations, and you can read more about it here. Put simply, it's a small feature that helps you see if something is worth exploring before you embark on a path that might eventually feel like a waste of time, money and effort. Wouldn't it be great if every project team could do this?

In a relatively short space of time, a project team would be able to evaluate an idea to see if it's a realistic proposition. The outcomes (especially with automation sandboxing) would be based around solid recommendations for how to automate a process better, or to come up with solutions for problems you didn't even know existed. With similar thinking, creative problems that are more abstract in nature, such as projects that aren't easily fixed with RPA, could be explored with the right business or technology partner.

We tend to approach projects with trepidation rather than great enthusiasm, so a helping hand from someone who knows what they're doing is money well spent. And in a world full of abandoned ideas and wasted budgets, there's no room for ignoring or not exploring every possible opportunity, whether you see it easily or not.

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