Why Support and Maintenance are also vital for Hyper-intelligent automation solutions?

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Have you ever thought about how many bots you come across daily? Imagine how things would turn out if all these bots stopped helping you! Will you feel like transporting yourself to early civilization days? 

Hyper-Intelligent bots are designed to handle all your business workflows end-to-end with a highly accurate and efficient process. With bots handling the business workflows we can expect a smooth functioning of the organization with no or limited incidents. But, if we go back to asking what bots are; simply put, they are software applications that imitate human activities and eliminate mundane repetitive tasks. Like all other software applications, these bots also require maintenance time and again to continue working efficiently, effectively, and in compliance with the company norms. The maintenance task becomes even more challenging when the business process undergoes some underlying changes. Hence, any company wanting to exploit hyper-intelligent automation solutions has to deploy a good number of skilled resources and define the support responsibilities clearly. 

 

Maintenance driven approach for a hassle-free process


Any humanly created process cannot be expected to run forever. But, the need of the hour is for all processes to run smoothly without any error round the clock. To fulfill the need for trouble-free processes, the top-notch solution is to take the maintenance driven approach. 

Even if the bot is built with the best programming efforts to handle any maintenance related issues, there is still a fair chance for the system changes to occur which requires a good maintenance process for the smooth functioning of bots. Hence, every company handling bot processes need to clarify maintenance responsibilities as the first step towards guaranteed smooth bot operation. 

 

Hence, a maintenance driven approach is required to handle: 

  • Process changes
  • Updating of interface applications
  • Implementing new functions of the software
  • Security patches for one or more software applications
  • Changes in the regulatory or business environment

 

The Support and maintenance team makes sense


Is having a maintenance solution approach enough to ensure the smooth functioning of bots? Once the solution is up and running, don’t you think your key stakeholders would like to monitor bot performance as and when they require it! Hence, it becomes all the more required to centralize the monitoring of bots by creating a support and maintenance team handling such activities. The maintenance team should focus on monitoring the software bots for the proactive handling of adverse situations. Such teams should be enabled with IT providing the necessary infrastructure for effective coordination in smooth operation. 

 

Different maintenance and control tasks


We all agree that the support team in any organization is responsible for planning the smooth operation and monitoring of production bots. They also coordinate with the IT infrastructure teams to check for the availability of automated processes. 

Along with this, the team solves all problems related to the execution of bots. Another important activity that a support team takes charge of is to ensure the maximum license utilization through effective planning, monitoring, and execution of process bots. 

With proper controls in place, the tram can thoroughly check if any unauthorized bots are running in the background in the production environment and ensure the smooth running of processes that are business-critical and complex require special skills to deploy the process. 

 

Predictive change management


Change is inevitable, and hence, a bot must be designed and maintained to update such changes in the process or system that the Automation is running. This makes the task of the Support Team even more challenging since they have to make sure: 


  • Detailed documentation is ready to manage any improvements. 
  • Meeting minutes are noted down precisely for any information about future updates. 
  • Bot sensitivity to certain changes is noted down which can be considered as minor in normal IT applications. 

Therefore, a Support team member should be in constant touch with process owners and users so that the team is well-equipped to handle any changes made in any of the bot-running machines. Also, upcoming changes to the application surface need to be proactively discussed and planned for the smooth functioning of bots.

To illustrate this further, let us take an example of changes in the login page. A normal human will understand the login interface even after it gets updated and can easily figure out where to input the username and password. Whereas, the same is not true in the case of a Robot. A bot needs to be redesigned to handle such changes so that the remaining automation flow is not hindered. 

Hence, there should be a constant communication plan for the RPA process where the Support team will make sure that the application and the process owners are informed about the type of change that needs to be updated for the bot to respond further.  

 

Quality problems in maintenance lead to external solutions


If you are thinking the Support team is solely responsible for making updates or fixing bugs, then think a bit more! A Support team member with development skills can showcase his expertise in continuously searching for improvements or modifications to make the existing automation process running in production still more efficient. Also, identifying bottlenecks and other problems during the maintenance process is again a part of the responsibility of support staff. 

Also, the Support team has to ensure quality is maintained in the production environment of the automation process. When the team fails to adhere to the agreed protocol or different team members with different skills react to the same problem differently, the quality of the process is compromised. When such situations are faced by the team, they have to outsource RPA consultants to handle such bot failures which will add to the overall cost of the company. 


Full control through Bot center (BC)


Are you finding trouble with traditional support models? These models with service tickets cannot provide an immediate fix to damage caused by an event of bot failure. Hence, to overcome this challenge, here is a recommendation to use Bot Center (BC) to handle your Support models. If you are wondering what other advantages will you get using Bot Center, here is a list of few other benefits that BC offers:


  • Full control of automation activities in the production environment. 
  • Identifies gaps, resolves conflicts and bridges downtime during the bot’s working cycle. 
  • Responsible for developing a framework for all necessary support and maintenance processes. 
  • Proactive in Incident Management Process: 
  1. Describes how incidents have to be managed at different levels. 
  2. Handles malfunctions of intelligent solutions during productive operation. 

Hence, the BC is here to provide an all-in-one solution to all problems faced by the Support and Maintenance Team with effectively handling disasters and improving the overall efficiency of the team. 

 

The basis for effective scaling of bots


We all know what Automation CoEs (Centers of Excellence) does! They help companies identify which processes are automatable and strategically develop robotic processes to automate the same. Similarly, a Bot Center (BC) focuses on scaling the digital workforce and develops effective strategies to maintain bots and accomplish governance. 

But, for such BCs to be set up, there is a requirement of qualified resources to support and maintain the bots so that a quick fix can be enabled whenever the bot malfunctions, changes, or fails. Such BCs also guarantee a flawless automation solution to be delivered over the entire life cycle adding the desired value for the company.




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