Ways to get started with RPA

Featuring Danielle Supkis Cheek, CPA, director of entrepreneurial advisory services at PKF Texas

Video transcript:

There is a couple of different kinds of RPA components. So you can have a local installation on just your individual computer. Actually, a lot of the RPA platforms allow for you to have a personal use license where you don’t have a server installation. You can’t have it memorized on a schedule. You just hit “run” when you have a certain task. So a lot of people that may not be in an organization that wants to implement a full RPA or they want to do a little test can actually automate some of their actual tasks that they’ve been personally assigned through RPA through some of the licensing. They just need to make sure that they’re not violating their own company’s security protocols for the software that they’re downloading.

So you can actually partner with other organizations and other groups that just offer this as a service. A lot of our clients are looking at it, bringing it into their IT teams and training their internal IT departments at their clients’ sites on how to use it, and we’re just helping on the controls component because, if you think about it, these are digital workers. Well you have to have segregation of duties with the digital workers, but this adds a whole other framework and layer because you have somebody that’s creating the bots, and then you have somebody that’s scheduling the bots and running them, and usually your IT teams have super admin rights. So you have rights to the back end of the systems that you have in place as well as to the user interface because the bots are touching the user interface. Looking and making sure you’re not violating your own segregation of duties and controls is actually a really important space in this deployment.


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What RPA is and how it works

Robotic process automation is like an Excel macro that can work on multiple applications, says Danielle Supkis Cheek, CPA. RPA can complete routine, repetitive tasks such as data entry, freeing up employee time from lower-level chores.