A Primer on Robotic Process Automation

Whats the big deal around RPA? - How is it different from traditional automation? - Can it really reduce labor costs up to 40%? - Is this real? - How much of this is real vs voodoo? - What impact will this have on outsourcing? - Who is actually using RPA now? - What is the first baby step I can make to determine if we can benefit from RPA?


These are question that I've been asked every week since founding the Institute for Robotic Process Automation in December of 2013.


While there is a sizeable and growing wave of interest in the most recent advancements in process automation the majority of the market place is still struggling to better understand what in essence will be the greatest thing to happen to most IT and process leaders and a double edged sword to the service provider community.


Imagine a world in which the meaning of “work” has been redefined for millions of people. Where our service economy can actually focus on providing services, delivered by an engaged talent pool that is innovating on such service. In this new world, work would no longer be a “four-letter word” associated with functioning within repeatable systems and mundane transactional processes. Instead, this other world would have workers who rethink end-to-end processes on a more holistic level with the goal of simultaneously impacting several factors: quality, compliance, functionality, best practices, regulatory functions, customer satisfaction, human error, and the all-important bottom line – all while continuing to create “the next” in the form of remarkable products and services.


Things are changing quickly; the key is to be aware and be prepared.

Frank Casale

"And as we look to history to help us predict the future, we cannot deny that automation; in particular, robotic process automation is today’s version of outsourcing – unstoppable."

Frank Casale, Founder & CEO, IRPA

Hard Facts and Hype:

The Data and the Drama Behind Robotic Process Automation

This primer has been written to help you become informed on how you might prepare to make the pivot, to understand better what RPA does and will do in the future, and learn how it can affect the redesign of processes and increase quality and value while decreasing costs.


Making the pivot to RPA is a decisive moment for service providers. The benefits of digital labor are rapidly eclipsing the benefits of physical labor, and service providers can choose or decline to translate that into success. I forecast that by 2020 as much as 40 percent of information technology outsourcing (ITO) and business process outsourcing (BPO) service providers

will be out of business or acquired by larger enterprises, if they fail to embrace the change and reinvent their business models.


For the buyer community, RPA is appealing because it is quick and cost effective and doesn’t send jobs offshore. It is my hope that our work at the Institute for Robotic Process Automation (IRPA), along with the information in this primer, will help business leaders on both the buyer and service sides position themselves at the cutting-edge of knowledge work technology, turning what they thought was a dystopic “humans need not apply” ending into a utopic beginning for the future of work.

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