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BTOES Insights Official
By
May 25, 2022

BTOES Financial Services Live - SPEAKER SPOTLIGHT: Uncover the Waste Costing You Money.

Courtesy of Blueprint's Matthew Dodgson & Matthew Agnew, below is a transcript of his speaking session on 'Uncover the Waste Costing You Money: How to Transform Problematic Processes into Real Business Value' to Build a Thriving Enterprise that took place at the Business Transformation & Operational Excellence Summit in Financial Services Live.

BLOGS COMPANY LOGO - 2022-03-25T161016.082pillar%20page%20line%201

Session Information:

Uncover the Waste Costing You Money: How to Transform Problematic Processes into Real Business Value

Financial services organizations run thousands of processes. 

They don’t know which processes are aligned with business objectives, which are contributing to a customer-centric approach, which are delivering value, which are losing business value, etc.

In this session, we uncover how Financial Services organizations can:

  • Consolidate and visualize all their business processes in one place
  • Analyze and assess process value with speed and ease
  • Discover and decide on the best process improvement strategy
  • Execute on that strategy – whatever the output might be – with total alignment and efficiency
  • Govern and control your business processes to maximize value

Session Transcript:

Speakers and that's Matthew Agnew, who is The Director Of Product Marketing Blueprint Blueprint software systems And is, first of all, I'd just say Blueprint, but a blueprint for software systems is the technical name. And he's responsible for understanding the challenges that businesses face when automating their processes.

And then articulating that real-world process problem into the rest of the Blueprint team. Everyone knows what a critical role, that is to be the interface between the business and the inside of the company.

Matthew Dodson, we have Matthew in Matthew today I'm going to let them sort out how to determine which one we say to.

Matthew Dodgson is the Director of Solution Engineering and Blueprint and has developed a deep knowledge of what businesses need when they want to improve their RPA processes, which of course is so critical and accelerating those processes and uses that knowledge to support enterprise clients around the world. So without further ado, I'd like to turn the stage, and the screen over to Matt, and Matt, and I'll let Matt and Matt decide who's going to talk first. Thank you, guys. I'm looking forward to take care.

Thank you very much. And just making sure here Are you guys able to see my screen?

Yes. I can't see your screen.

Are all good, great. So thank you very much Summit, attendees and watchers and listeners for joining us today, so and thank you Chris, for that great introduction here. So, Matt and Matt, these are the maps here talking to you this morning. And we'll make it easier, everybody, a blueprint is named Matt just makes it easier. And we all wear blue.

So, I just want to give everyone a quick understanding of why we're here talking to you today.

Blueprint ImgSo, as in the product marketing role, the first thing that I need to do is understand the challenges in the market, understand what people are facing, what the problems are, and then how we can go about helping people solve those problems. And Matt's role is that he, day in and day out, talks to people that are coming to him with challenges, and looking for solutions.

So we have a lot of experience talking to different companies of many different sizes here, and we just, sir Really want to thank you for giving us the time to share that knowledge that we have with you guys. So, as Chris mentioned, Blueprint is a software company, and the best way to describe Blueprint is that we're here to help you improve work, help you improve your processes from many different angles.

And one of the first things that we want to talk about today is I want everybody here to take a few seconds and think about, what are the state of your processes.

Now, if you think of all the processes across your organization, whether they are automated processes, manual processes, outsourced, and think about where you are right now, from our experience, we typically find that companies fall in 1 of 3 categories.

First is that they are emerging. They have some automation, they're doing some RPA practices, maybe they have free for bots that are doing a few things now. They, I've looked into companies like UI path, they are evaluating things, they're getting bigger with how they are looking at the processes.

The second one we see, and really, still, a very common one, is the maturing one. These are people that have been automated for several years, That probably has a dedicated RPA team, or RPA practice, maybe 50 to 100 bots or more around there. And RPA is a big thing that they do and they promote the use of RPA within their organization.

And the last one we typically run into is the mature organization. These are companies that have an automation Center of Excellence in place. And they might also have a dedicated process improvement team or process analysis team, and they do a lot of process analysis as well. So, look at these three circles, and trying to think, you know, throughout the remainder of our presentation, where do you fall.

And regardless of where you are in these three circles, on one other thing that we have really seen a lot of, is this concept that we're calling automation overload.

And it really what's happening is that I would say, when RPA really started getting big, people really got excited about it, and they started automating everything. And I know Matt Dodson, you've seen this as well right? Where companies What are some of the problems that you've typically seen that where people are kind of doing this concept of automation overload?

Btog CTAYeah. A lot of it is it's kind of forcing the technology to sometimes do things it's not designed to do.

We see this with just, you know, there's a few major and just quite a selection of automation platforms and tools you can go with. And some of these tools work better in different situations and with different technologies and systems.

And we sometimes, you know, see, people taking automation as a hammer, and they just see, everything is a nail.

And they just try to hit everything, and they try to automate as much as they can, which is a very noble idea, but it's really understanding. Is it the right process to automate?

Is it actually the right technology to use that time to actually turn that into an automation and are you going to get continued ROI? Are you going to sync all your Roi from its budget of now trying to keep that automation running?

Exactly, exactly, yeah, it's like the concept imagine in your house all of a sudden you decide that you really love plants, right? And you buy a plant, then you buy another plant, you keep buying plants, and it's great. Everything's there, but then, you know, you want to go on vacation, and no one's there to water it, or you're realizing how long it takes to water it or the maintenance. It takes a byte plant food and you have to trim your plants and make sure they have the right sunlight.

So it's, you know, the no one thought of doing anything poorly here. It's a great idea, automation, But there's a couple of problems that happen.

And a couple of things that we've seen with customers and prospects that come to us is a big one here, automating processes that don't need to be automated. Again, people just got excited. Right, it'll go, let's automate that. And what happens is it costs more than they think they're saving, and they don't realize that right away.

That's a really common thing with people that are in one of those first two circles, the the emerging or the maturing where they're like, Yeah, my automated us, it's great, But nobody really looked and said, should that have been automated in the first place.

Another thing that we see is when we don't properly evaluate the cost of the automation upfront, a lot of times, we believe this is happening.

I spoke to a very large Canadian organization, where they believe that they're doing this really thorough review of, to justify the cost of the automation. And really, what they're doing is they're looking at how much time it takes for an individual to do this now, and then how much time they think they'll save. And then they equate that to a dollar. And then they go, great. And the automated process, and they go, and they're really happy and high. five, each other. And then they take that automation, and they send it over to the development team and they never think about it ever again.

And what's happening is they didn't fully evaluate two main things. They didn't evaluate the maintenance cost fully.

And they didn't evaluate the licensing costs fully. And again, sometimes, you know, a bot is a person, right, digital worker and they need to have access to all these things.

And sometimes the cost that it takes to build this is a lot more than our savings, And when we don't evaluate that properly upfront, we run into excessive spending later on.

Another problem is not optimizing a process first. You know, as Matt said, we, people got excited with this, and we, they're jumping into process. Automation and not looking, you know, it's just the right process first, or just taking it exactly how it exists and automating it. No one's saying, can we shave a couple of hours of this, or what are we doing with this process?

Big, big one here. Not aligning a process to your strategic business goals.

Again, think of your own organizations for a second.

I imagine all of you right now can think of something in your organization that gets done. Maybe you do it yourself, or something in your team.

And if you stop and think about it, why are you doing this?

Is it just something you've always done? Is it something a former manager that's out there anymore asked you to do? Is it aligned with your goals? And that's a really common thing where the work gets done and no one's saying, should we be doing this in the first place? Or should this work be tweaked to better suit? What the business needs?

We mentioned this earlier, not factoring your maintenance costs into your success criteria, a big one here, and a hard one to management. Sometimes, these bots have really, really high maintenance costs after their live.

And they're getting stuck on legacy systems. This is the big thing that we see as well, where people are using software that they been using for years, and they have a big, huge deployment of it. And they want to start looking at other things. So they want to start looking at UI path or Microsoft Power, automate, or even new versions of older software, and they just look at it. And they say, oh, hi. So many automations on this platform, it's not even worth moving.

And then you're not getting the return that you could be getting.

Hmm.

So, what does this causing for our business? Why does this matter? Why are we here today listening to the Maps talk about this?

one is business ways, right? When the wrong process is getting done, or you're doing redundant work, you're losing money.

I've heard from a couple of different sources, you know, big solutions integrators and analysts in the space, roughly 20 to 30% of your automated process landscape is redundant, and I know Matt, I think you had some firsthand knowledge talking to companies where they find a good chunk of their portfolio of automated processes. Is redundant, correct?

Yeah, we worked with a few very large companies that have essentially these huge Estates of things, like automation, anywhere, processes in the order of, you know, 3000 plus ATM exe files, and not in analyzing that entire state.

We found, you know, or, you know, you can see 4 to 500 of those processes were just redundant. There was something as simple as copy and pasting problems and copy and pasting years. Or they have multiple processes that might have different names. But they're doing the same thing.

So we found that, you know, that's very true when you really start looking hard at these larger states.

Any state you're starting to build up, organically over time, And think about what that means for a second 20 to 30%. So, one in five of your automated processes don't aren't doing anything, so think about that, That's a huge problem.

Right. You know, for those of us that don't have that, many of you might think, OK. You know, but we all want to grow, We all want to grow this practice. And some imagined that at some point, if you continue on this path, you know, you're going to have, you know, 200, 300 processes that aren't doing what you think they're doing. And that's a huge, huge, problem. That's a massive waste of time, effort, and resources.

Obviously, this all leads to lost money. You know, when when we have these high maintenance costs and bought outages and the success of licensing fees, we're spending money.

That we don't need to be spending again, know, of one in five of these processes that all have access to systems that have an Active Directory license and access to your ERP system and access to your marketing software.

These are licensing that you're using, that you don't need to be use it.

And really, again, what it's all for, is we want to reach our goals, you know, the business has something they want to do, Your business wants to move into new markets.

They want to expand into new areas, introduce a new product line, make more money. All right, and everything that you're doing on the process side should be lining up with this.

But when it's not, that's really going to be causing you some problems.

So don't worry, it's not all doom and gloom, I know what we've been doing and glooming a bit this morning and it's a bit but cloudy out of my window here in Toronto.

But you know, let's talk about how we can get better, and before we can talk about how we get better, why did this happen?

And really it's what Matt and I were talking about, people got really excited.

And if we think of this concept of improving work as a linear goal, you know, we start here, we end here, people jumped and way too far on the path, right. There were kind of cheating a bed, or in the race. So they were jumping in, oh, let's automate some stuff.

28But really, what they should have been doing is taking a step back and looking at process improvement and process analysis firms.

So, how can we continue to do this? And how can we improve improve?

So there's a few things that we can do.

one thing is consolidation, and there's this idea of looking at all of your processes in one location, RPA tended to be a very siloed process when it first started, one department was using it, and another started using something different.

And that's great, but it really leads to a lack of the right information that helps you make good decisions. So, you need to have the ability to look at everything in one spot.

Next, we need to not allow that siloing to continue to happen. It's, it, was good that your finance team move forward with a UI path or whatever, and they automate us and stuff, But everyone needs to be doing the same thing. And it needs to be managed by a central department, your organization. Or you're gonna keep running into problems. You're going to keep having these redundancies and these processes that don't line up, and also, let's just learn if one department's doing it, Well, let's do it. Somewhere else.

Optimize, Let's continue to look at our process, and it's not all about automating I mean, we just shave an hour shave a day, you know shave you know a week off something that someone's doing right now. Like it doesn't always have to be an automated process.

Then of course, modernizing lets use the best technology available.

Just because you have a bunch of bots on a system doesn't mean you can't look at something else and move forward like don't be scared to think I need to be moving forward to another system. There are ways.

So in just a few seconds, I'm going to turn it over to my daughter who's gonna show you know there's a lot of me talking now about Matt is going to show you how blueprint is designed to do what we're showing here. So everybody can leave here with knowing that there's another option out there, and there's some other ways that can help you improve.

And this is all about doing what, you know, this is really what Blueprint wants to help businesses do have this consolidated view, identify your bottlenecks and waste, reduce this access that's happening and really be able to develop new processes faster, all while working together as a company. So, this is really how Blueprint works.

This is a quick visual representation of it and it's really what we just talked about, taking what you're doing now on the Left, putting it in the blueprint in, the middle, analyzing it, and then making some decisions to get better.

And those decisions typically fall under modernizing, optimizing, standardizing, or automating and then we put it back into our work through a variety of ways.

So that was the very quick five second View of how Blueprint Works, and I'm going to turn it over to Matt .... who's gonna give you a view and demo of how it works. So just bear with me a second here, so I remember how to do this.

So we're putting that on the spot.

Yeah, all right, I think I did it here. I just made you the presenter. I think.

He did, as well, you have the power, this mm.

Hopefully, you can see my screen Let me know once that comes up here.

Yep.

I can see it, Perfect.

So I appreciate, I appreciate everyone's time today and thank you Matt for for that kind of context.

And so what we wanted to do is show you a bit of how Blueprint really helps with these, kind of let's put it in two simple buckets.

one is helping you understand the work that's getting done and then the second is helping you improve that work or make an improvement or action on that improvement strategy. So what you're seeing on your screen is Blueprints. Now, Blueprint is a web based solution. It's cloud hosted.

You know, it can be hosted by us, most of my customers and their own sites, on prem, on premise.

Whatever is needed in this. Again, the whole idea is to give organizations back this ability to understand the work that's getting done in a variety of ways.

So today, I've of, I have a process that I want to analyze and understand. Specifically. In this case, I have a process. Let me actually pull it up here.

I have an automated process that's running an automation anywhere.

This is a hotel meeting, complexity automation, that runs reports from Excel. And it's fixed, no, to a general location.

But we don't know exactly how this process works, and this is a common thing with, with any processes that get run today, especially in the automation world, because a lot of these processes get understood, and they get built up. And then we have this repository of processes that kind of take care of themselves until they don't, until they break, and we have to go deal with them. So what blueprint does is we help you first analyze and understand your process and your work today. And we do this by ingesting it or pulling into the system.

So what I mean by this, and in this case here, I'm actually going to import from automation anywhere. And you can see I can import from a variety of places, whether it's process information in traditional format, like Word, Excel, and Visio, whether it's, you know, more modern platforms, like automation platforms, a automation, anywhere Blue Prism, UI path, or even process discovery tools.

Here, for example, I have one from Fortress IQ, but at any rate, what we're doing is, we're going to take that information, in this case here, we're going to take a package of all of the raw code, the ATM exe files, and we're going to pull it into Blueprint and turn it into what we call digital blueprints.

And a digital blueprint essentially is a way to take that process and understand it in a consistent format that we haven't blueprint. That helps us analyze and interpret, not just the file as a whole, but the individual steps. The individual commands in this case because it's automation process, the individual commands and systems that are being executed on this step.

So why is this, you know, significant?

It means that when you want to understand process that's being done today, usually you have to deploy a manual worker to go and understand that need to look at code. Read through diagrams, read through images.

What we're doing here is actually digitizing all of that information into a consistent format that we can then report on and provide detail as you'll see here, in, in minutes as opposed to the days or potentially a week, day or weeks that it could take for someone to go through and understand those processes.

Let me just do a quick refresh.

So here's the automation or the process that we've pulled into Blueprint that we sucked in.

Before we decide what we want to do with this, we need to really understand what this process does. So we're going to use blueprint reports and this dashboard that's built into the system to give us some context in detail. I'll explain at a high level what you're looking at.

But, at the click of a button, what this is doing is, this is telling me exactly, what this process does. It tells me, in this case here, and this is very common with automations. How many flows or processes are part of that? Entire automation.

How many steps are actions that is actually taking? So, in total, this is about 500 steps. It's a fairly, you know, it's a medium, complexity, medium sized automation.

And then it starts to give me a breakdown, the average number of elements, the maximum number of elements.

And these become very important.

Because in working with companies, we've actually established some industry baselines that really help you understand specifically for things like automations, hey, are we building these automations too complex? Are we taking what's called a micro tactical approach, meaning we're building each section of this automation to be independent and consumable, but not too, too complex.

I can tell you in this case here, a threshold for some of the baseline is usually around like 150 steps. So anything above 150 starts to get more complex. And in other words, it starts to cut into the ability to meet came and ultimately starts to cut into the ability to deliver that Har are high Roi. So when you see something like a number, like 320 steps, that becomes suspect, and again, that concert to point to a way to optimize your process, in this case here, as you might want to refactor that particular ATM exe file at that particular flow to be more effective and more efficient.

Screenshot (4)And we do this analysis, not just on the size of these automations but also on the complexity.

This graph, here on the left-hand side, is giving you a basic scoring around how we've scored, and this is up calculation, we do, we pull it in. We score the complexity of each process, and we tell you, Hey, if it's above, something like 20, it's actually in a range of high complexity. That, again, it's gonna cut into the ability to maintain and drive high Roi.

If it's above something like 50, it's extremely high. You should definitely consider refactoring.

So, this analysis, and I am giving you a detailed dive here quickly to really help you understand that the work that gets done today Is, Is, is tricky to understand. Especially when you are deploying Manual people to go, you know, manual effort to go through and understand it. Because you can only understand each process one at a time with Blueprint. We can pull in not just a single process but an entire suite of processes whether it's automations, manual, processes, and we can do this analysis. And really start to get a sense of, OK, with all of this understood. Where do we have problems? Where do we need to invest effort? And then to our second point, how can we improve these processes.

In this particular example here, what we're going to do is we actually want to look at maybe modernizing this Legacy, this is this is a process that runs an automation anywhere violette it and we actually want to move internally. We want to move over to something like Microsoft Power automate Desktop.

Well, one of the things we've done in Blueprint is not only provide you the ability to or provide the ability to help you analyze those, that process and that automation, or that work, if you will, but to start giving you a sense of, hey, how well is this going to be able to be modernized or re platform this? We actually start to give you a score and a percentage around moving to more modern platform, something like the power to a desktop platform or UI path.

In this case here, you can see, this actually has a mapping percentage of 97% behind the scenes in Blueprint.

Because we've broken down these automations to do a very granular set of steps, we understand what those steps are and we understand how those steps map into different RPA platforms, different technologies. And so we actually can give you a score. And then from that score, you can actually decide, hey, this is a good candidate to move over.

And it helps you, in the actually, replatforming, so in this case here, what I intend to do is I'm going to take this particular automation.

And what you're seeing here is the actual digital blueprint is a simple graphical representation of that process.

And just so you guys see what I'm talking about, every step in this gets broken down and decomposed into the detailed granular pieces of the actions, the commands and the systems that are being interacted with.

So this, what we call common object model is kind of a generic RPA language that we've built as a sort of translator in Blueprint. So, again, this is one of those optimization or improvement strategies, and we've built into Blueprint.

And what this all means is we can not only understand this automation, but then we can turn around and in the same breath, in the same day.

In the same hour, I can actually export and push this entire automation over into, for example, power automate desktop that will package up.

all of the, um, that process that was kind of harvested and pulled out of automation anywhere, it will rewrite that in the format syntax and structure and commands of something like power automate desktop and in doing so, it actually, Let me pull this up here quickly.

It actually will export it over into my power automate desktop environments.

And what you're going to see here just a quick rundown is, it's actually rewritten that entire process flow, an entire automation, in a power automate desktop structure.

It's turned it from ... files into a main flow with sub flows. It's translated all of the variables. It's translated all selectors all the commands. And anything that isn't compatible because you saw that example 97%, so there's a 3% difference between those two platforms. We provide a report. We provide some details that help the developers now example, in this example, go in and actually fix the remaining steps. And so these efforts, this effort here, organizations are going through things like replatforming initiatives.

A lot of them are just, you know, jumping in feet first into the deep end with cement shoes on and trying to swim. They're trying to just pick up all of the automations and move them over as quick as they can.

What we're showing here is a more measured and calculated approach where the first step in any improvement strategy is to analyze and understand what you have.

So you can prioritize it.

You can figure out what you have to do before you want to actually, then what your choices are.

In this case here, when we want to improve, we can actually use that analysis to tell us which of these automations is going to re platform easily. Which of them is going to convert and be supported well in the new technology, which might not have compatibility, which we might want to improve before we even do any of that replatforming. For example, if you had an incredibly complex process, you might want to do some refactoring before you did that. Or you might want to include the refactoring as part of that replatforming effort.

And so, I want to wrap up here, But this is really to give you an example of how that analysis drives the improvement.

And I leave you with 1, 1 final thought here where over time, This analysis I showed you today is just around one process, one automation.

Blueprint ImgWhat you're looking at, in this example, here, is an entire repository, where we're starting to not just pull in one type of automation from one particular system, but we have UVC, is a very common thing today in your organizations, and the landscape where there is multiple technologies. There are multiple automation approaches, multiple approaches, to processes, Whether they're manual, whether they're, you know, Blue Prism, automation, anywhere, Power to the Desktop UI Path, I've seen organizations that have all of them and then, still, write your own custom automations.

Blueprint becomes a central, consolidated view for all of that information.

It allows us to provide a consistent view of understanding and even help us monitor and centralize all of that information so that we can action on how we improve those processes and keep our business running most efficient and most effective way it can.

And with that, I will pass it back to Matt.

Wonderful. Thank you, Matt. And that's really what we have for you guys today, So we do have a little bit of time here for some questions. So please use the question feature here, and we definitely have some time for that.

So Chris, I don't know. Can you guys hear me? Hopefully, again.

I've, OK, I have heard you guys present different different versions of this, and every time I learned something which tells you that this is a complex, important subject. So I have a question for you. It feels like you're balancing. And yes, I'm building on one of the written questions that I've gotten in front of me that somebody asked, but, and I must deepen this tribe, as you guys are. I think, in many ways, I feel like there's two things that there are many things, but two things that I want to think about.

one someone is, is where they are today, and they say, well, we want to get better, so we're going to just throw out our RPA tool and start over.

There's a school of thought, right, that says that.

And then there's another school of thought that says, no, that's a crazy idea. And there's too much going on with that. So we're gonna figure out how to optimize and work with our processes, with the existing tool we have.

Up until such point.

That maybe then, makes sense.

When I first started an RPI. sorry, RPA.

It was about 2015. So RPA was very new at the time, as you guys know.

So can you guys, can you guys talk to me about that? There you're, you're an operations lead, your process lead and you're looking at the two choices. What do I do to my processes other than throw out my RPA tool?

And when does it come time to say, no time to change RPA tools?

Yeah. I can, I can speak to that a little bit here. And I think there's a third thing that happens as well, and I think Matt's experience as well, is that it's so complicated that we just talk about it for six months to a year. We do nothing.

You know, just just the hard reality of it. Where it's people, they talk, and they talk to vendors, they talk internally.

And then nothing happens because they think it's so impossible to do anything. Because, I'm like, we're in this mess here. Right? Where we have 5000 automations You know that I'm talking of very large companies and have no idea what they are. We have no idea. You know, if they're efficient, we know what you know. We're not really sure what to do so, So, yeah. So there's a third one as well of the Dutch just beside and do nothing.

But, um, yeah, and I think, you know, we talked to a lot of people that are in that second bucket, you manage mentioned, where I do want to move forward. And really, what we hope that this session provides is just letting people know that there are other options.

Alright. So it doesn't have to be as hard as you think it is. So.

I mean, I don't really think you need to throw out everything. I know Matt, when you think about that, like I would recommend not because it's so work. Valid work that you did, so I think it's really about that, analyzing what you have. first. Let's take a look like that's probably your first project is let's take a look at what you have before you do anything.

Let's just see, OK, What do we have what's working? What's not working? What do you think we can save? What can we retire? Right. Matt, what do you think on that? Subject. Yeah, so, what I've seen is organizations have a lot more useful data and intellectual property than they realize.

Take, for example, a take, for example, an existing set of automations that you're kind of looking at these two, I would call them hyperbolic options of, you know, I'm going to throw out the baby with the bathwater and start from scratch. Or, I'm not going to do anything until the whole thing rust to a halt and the machine has to be just scrap and rebuilt.

And what we've seen is that, actually, there's, those options are two extremes, because you don't have understanding of your data, of your intellectual property, and that's really where we come in for a lot of these customers Is they say, Listen, before you go in and try to hypothesize about these two very catastrophic scenarios.

Why don't you actually, do you know what you, how? We think we know we have, We Kinda know we have, the reality is people don't know how work gets done.

And that's a very, very, hard to the very therapist, sort of on the couch situation. When you're like, why, I kinda know stuff, get the, gets done at the organization. I don't know exactly how, and when, we want to go to this. You know a cloud update next week, and next month, but we don't know how much it's going to rip through all our processes. All these challenges are, because of a lack of disability, and a lack of understanding. And that lack of understanding, And it's really this analysis phase that we come to with every organization saying, before you go and jump into the deep end of either one of these situations, wouldn't it be better to understand what you have it.

The reality is, it's probably a mix of the two.

There's a lot of organizations that are doing things like they are rebuilding parts of their automations because they don't know what they have. But in some cases, they should rebuild parks in any way. It just because there's an improvement process. And there should be some, some ways to improve that. We help organizations do that. At the same token, there's some of those automations that should just be left in those old platforms and should be retired and should be other initiatives taken up in parallel. But both of those decisions should be based on understanding what we have today, and how things work, and how things operate.

So you, you just pointed something out that I wanted to say that I've experienced and wanted. I'd love to be able to ask everyone who's listening if they've experienced this.

You're in an organization, and you're having a big debate what to do, should we tweak, should we adjust, should we go to a new thing, or this is big debate? And what you just described is what's usually missing in the middle of that debate.

I think of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.

There's a famous scene, there's a debate between these two people, the Class's system, the Romanticist.

And in the case of this example, it's the person who just wants to buy the brand new thing, have the right thing. In that case, it was a BMW part.

And the other person who says, we can make this work with a minor adjustment.

28But if you don't know where you are, if you don't know what the state of the business is, which you just so clearly described, Right? Then you're having a debate almost from philosophical opposites, which never gets anywhere, right? If it's a debate, philosophical opposites. And you don't even know what the true situation is. How do you resolve it?

OK, so I'm not suggesting that that Blueprint is Zen and the art of RPA. But maybe it is.

We help bridge the gap between those two, those two conflicting points of view?

Yeah, we, OK, Well, let me, Let's see, We've got, we've got some more minute. Did you wanna say something about that point? No, I was just saying, it's very, it's very, very accurate.

It's a very common thing, where the reality is somewhere in the middle, and you have to take an evidenced based approach in today's world.

I love that. And it's certainly, columns that debate down. Which leads to the next question I want to ask.

And this, this question is, actually, you can read into what the person is thinking when they asked this question, right?

What roles do you typically see IT playing in the process improvement space, which clearly, by definition, whoever wrote that is saying to themselves, Hey, there's some conflict here, T zero. All right?

So, what are your thoughts about that, The role of IT and the process improvement space, as a Lean six Sigma master, Black Belts. This is totally my world. So, go, the, the, the role of IT in the process space, you know, we see it a lot and automation. That's really force the issue of where does all where do I automations get developed inside outside of IT?

We see a lot of the operational and the support side of how do you keep these processes and the automation world running that still firmly falling in an IT center of excellence, sort of role.

So as much as you can have this kind of distributed citizen developer, federated model, all all roads lead to Rome. Right, everything comes back to you.

There's a technology group that is going to own and run this, and this is common in every organization at any stage of their, of their evolution and life cycle early on. It can be very federated. But very quickly, once it, once it grows it, starts to, it needs to kind of organically converge on a group and A team.

So we commonly see IT. The role is, you know, usually the gatekeeper and the, the, the housing of that of those automations and those processes.

And know, when it comes to improvement, they're usually the first to signal, or need to be kind of have the tools at their disposal to show, hey, these changes are going to have this huge impact on your processes that you depend on, that you're not aware of.

So sometimes the people holding the flag and trying to make people aware.

We're usually involved in trying to get the tools and the ability to do that analysis on reading process.

Yeah, I was just going to add, if you think of a large company at a picture, a large company was the CIO and, excuse me, And typically, you know, if you ask a CIO, a few questions that they know their high level strategy of like NATO, their server strategy, their cloud strategy, their support strategy from a high level.

They know the, you know, the telephone strategy, although there are using Microsoft or your Gmail. You know, they, they know those things. And even more now, so And I, it's really important that They also know their process analysis and improvement strategy and RPA strategy. So, it's, you know, they, they have to have a strong understanding of, that they might not be the ones hitting the buttons. But it's becoming almost as important as the other things I mentioned. Right, where that, it's such an important part of your business.

That your CEO, of your company, your CIO should have a good understanding of your process analysis tools, new RPA tools, and, and what's going on there.

No, I, I'd like to actually get your thoughts on this, in the 19 fifties to 19 sixties across the global auto industry.

A major realization took place, and it went like this.

Why are the design people in one building, the engineers in another building and the marketing people in the third building, Right? And forget the maintenance people who've had to build these things later.

They were just like an afterthought, and as a result, cars were pretty crappy, right? When that paradigm broke down.

And the engineers sat next to the marketing people who sat next to the, you know, the people who wanted to design it, or at least much closer in proximity, instead of throwing the idea over the fence and making somebody build something that can't be built in your experience as you're working with companies and clients.

First of all, does that resonate? Do you understand what I'm what I'm trying to say about the division of functions? And where would you say, Is there a realization in, in a significant number of companies have that problem, or we move through it? I mean, what would be your assessment?

So, this same problem has been going on for quite a few decades, but is really becoming prevalent and problematic.

In, in the software world and the world of information.

When you talk about, well, we have to understand our process before we redesign our process. For we automate our process, Then we have to maintain those.

Each of those four exercises happens in different documents, in different systems, in different places, by different people.

And so, you've taken that same problem, you've made the problems more complex, because there are more people and more systems involved.

And you've separated all of that information with hard breaks of different systems and and file formats in between them.

And so this is one of the core things we've been.

You know, we've been kind of championing working on for years is it's not about bringing people close together. Yes, virtually. physically that always helps. But it's important about bringing that information closer together and have that life cycle be connected.

Everything that happens has to be a connected flow. There has to be a consolidated way to look at all of that and see how it went from one step to another, so we can trace it and ultimately, drive better transparency. So, it's very true And it's always the case. When you look at history, you can see problems repeating itself.

And it's the exact same problem that you've just mentioned, but it's been going on for years, and it's really prevalent now in the process and in the automation world.

So, go ahead.

I'm sorry, I'm just going to add to that a bit, you know, Brian Halligan, the CEO of HubSpot, a large global marketing company, has this concept where, you know, exactly what you're saying, where people tend to, the easiest thing that people tend to do is just think about their team, right. And then just like success of their team. You know, that it's, we're going to do this really, really well, and it's, I'm just gonna work on a team and that'll be good. And what he said was, instead of sticking our team, let's think about the customer.

So if we think about the customer or the client first, what they need, what will tend to re reaching our goals better, will tend to be more aligned, and that can do the exact same thing with RPA.

You know, it's, people just tend to think, how can I make my finance department as good as possible.

But if you think of it, how can I, we reach our goals and support our clients, people that are using us better.

Then you'll be more likely to vote, Yeah, you know what? We need to involve other departments or this alignment needs to happen.

It's the same thing a blueprint or a small company. But, you know, with the pandemic, you know, that people tend to just that's easiest thing.

Screenshot (4)Oh, I'm in the marketing team, I'm only going to talk the marketing people. But you know, Matt and I meet every single week, I'm meeting with the product team. And you're right after this. And we work hard on making sure that we have that alignment.

Because it's super important in every concept, not just RPA.

So I'm not I don't want to compare you guys to something that you won't catch the comparison on.

But after that mess that I described in the auto industry, we got the Ford Taurus, which was one of the most reliable Ford's ever built. We got the Honda Accord, one of the most reliable Honda cars ever built. We got the F 150.

Massively, the Ford F 150, which is obviously if you're an American, it's the most bought car in the entire country.

The quality, performance and price characteristics of all three of those, we're exponentially better than what preceded them and what I'm hoping.

And I see blue, you know, I literally see what you guys do.

I see what blueprint does, and say, you are the potential bridge to that kind of performance with business processes, et cetera. And the companies, as I started, started this session off, everyone's on a journey. They're either going into the Amazon, or going across the desert. Are going up Mount Everest and they need the right pick, ax, Tools, Guide, mentor, and sherpa. And I don't know which one of those you guys want to be.

I'd call your Sherpas that, that'd be my, I'd say Sherpas with a great tool. How's that?

For, for the analogy, for the day. Look, we're out of time. We're going to take a 15 minute break for the next session. I want to thank you guys every time I hear you.

I'm inspired by what you have to say. I can't wait to see more and more of this rolls out. More companies benefit from what you guys are capable of and what you're currently doing.

And if you could just one, where a polka dot shirt and one way or a striped shirt, it'd be fantastic on the next call, I deal with it.

I'll put everybody to join us back in 15 minutes to an hour. Thank Matt and Matt for a fantastic session and information. At least I thought it was fantastic. I hope you did see you all in 15 minutes.

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About the Author

more - 2022-01-29T210840.860Matthew Dodgson,
Head of Global Solution Engineering,
Blueprint Software Systems.

I believe in delivering quality solutions to customers that drive change and value for their organization. Cultivated through a background in customer service, quality assurance and software engineering I have seen first hand that the best solutions require dedication, passion and support from the whole team. 

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About the Author

more - 2022-01-29T210910.254Matthew Agnew,
Director of Product Marketing,
Blueprint Software Systems.

For over 10 years, I have been a go-to resource for sales, marketing, communications, and product management in the technology sector. I love tackling new challenges and using my creative background to help organizations thrive in new and innovative ways.

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