Starting an Automation Center of Excellence – A Roadmap: Map existing assets and capabilities; Build the Initial CoE; Run the initial CoE; Scale up operations
Use of Service Delivery Automation (SDA) – which refers to various types of technologies that can automate inputs to a process, the process itself, or the outputs from a process – is surging in the global services industry. When scaling beyond proof of concept, organizations are finding it’s important to bring together the SDA skills and knowledge into an automation Center of Excellence (CoE). Doing so enables the business to develop its SDA capabilities and competencies in a controlled and centralized manner, in turn helping ensure maximum success from the SDA initiative.
Through our research into automation Centers of Excellence, we’ve identified several areas in which organizations struggle.
While there are numerous possible structures for a SDA CoE, we’ve found that a pyramid structure is ideal, as it helps bring the CoE governance in-line with its customers. The pyramid should have three distinct layers, each with its unique set of responsibilities and clearly defined line of communication with the client organization. Clarity around roles and responsibilities across different layers in the pyramid is critical, not only to avoid miscommunications and missteps, but also to help maximize operational efficiency.
Demand for SDA skills has far outpaced the talent supply. Some are filling the gap by locating the Center of Excellence in locations with mature, trainable talent. Others are partnering with specialist firms, e.g., technology vendors and service providers, to leverage their domain experience and access to skilled talent, collaborating with startups, and seeking talent from technology groups and professional communities.
Multiple leading global companies are also training their existing employees on SDA. They typically engage technology vendors and/or external consultants to conduct extensive training programs for three to six months. Further, they encourage employees to join and participate in professional networks /communities and other events to learn from other SDA professionals’ experiences. This approach not only helps build internal skills for automation and reduces dependency on hiring from external sources, but also provides FTEs impacted by automation with alternative career paths.
The traditional offshore-centric sourcing model based on labour arbitrage has limited relevance for SDA. Because of SDA’s unique requirements, organizations are investing in a diversified location portfolio for SDA in order to leverage the best propositions of each. For example, mature talent markets such as India offer a relatively larger talent pool, are suitable for a large-scale centre, and can deliver quick ramp-up pace. Onshore and nearshore locations offer greater depth and breadth of skills, enable greater interaction with business stakeholders, and provide accelerated time-to-market. And co-locating the SDA CoE with existing global services/digital technology centres can help the organization benefit from greater collaboration and economies of scale.
To learn more about various aspects of the talent model, delivery landscape, and global location hotspots for SDA CoEs, please read our recently published report, “Talent Model and Location Hotspots for Service Delivery Automation (SDA) Center of Excellence (CoE),” which we developed based on deep-dive discussions with leading GICs, service providers, and automation technology vendors. And if you’ve established an automation Center of Excellence, we’d love to hear your story. Please contact us directly at [email protected] or [email protected].
The centralized model maximizes standardization but may not capture BU/regional differences; the hub-and-spoke model can enhance automation operations in additional geographic regions but limits standardization
The pyramid has three distinct layers that define the governance structure of the CoE; each layer has a unique set of responsibilities, and clarity around roles and responsibilities is essential to identifying the right talent for the CoE
Tuesday, 12 July 2016 | 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. EST
What’s next if you have already done a few RPA proofs of concept and have automated a handful of processes? How do you scale up, make the most of any lessons learned and the skills that you have gained? What about smarter automations – how do you trial those?
Designed to help enterprises leap onto the next stage of SDA maturity, participants will discuss with peers and experts the best practices for setting up and running an SDA CoE. We’ll also address challenges such as scaling up automations and resourcing. An SDA Center of Excellence (CoE) could be just the ticket for organizations that have left the RPA starting block and want to do more and maximize the returns from a broader set of automation technologies.
Who Should Attend
Global services and process transformation executives of enterprises wishing to discuss and learn more about scaling up and broadening service delivery automation (and RPA in particular) by setting up a CoE.
What You Will Learn
Participants will discuss and learn about where to start and what factors to consider when setting up an SDA CoE.