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Robotic Process Automation for Risk Management
Let bots do the heavy lifting while lowering compliance costs
Have you ever been frustrated by the number of compliance-related activities you are required to do on a regular basis that take away from your real job? Have you ever wished you had an army of interns that could follow you around and take care of all of the routine, mundane tasks that get in the way of you truly being productive?
Now imagine what you could do with your time if you really did have that army of interns doing those repetitive tasks for you—24 hours a day, seven days a week, without complaint. How much more enjoyable would that make your job, and how much more value could you provide? The only catch is that these interns are not human, but instead software bots.
That is the essence of robotic process automation (RPA), a simple, but powerful, technology tool that growing numbers of organizations are using to streamline compliance costs while liberating talented, experienced employees to solve more challenging problems. Across organizations, RPA enables organizations of all sizes to efficiently scale operations with minimal impact to existing business processes.
RPA employs software robots, known familiarly as “bots,” to complete structured, repeatable and logic-based tasks by mimicking the action taken by existing human staff.
How RSM can help
RSM can help you both implement bots to reduce your overall cost of compliance, as well as assess and improve your organization’s use of bots. We not only understand the risks that organizations face in adopting new technologies, but also have firsthand experience in helping clients develop, implement and optimize their use of RPA. Our RPA risk management services include:
RPA strategy workshop. We can advise leaders on prominent practices for implementing bots and how they can be used to streamline compliance and audit processes across all three lines of defense.
RPA implementation. We can work with you to either pilot or fully implement bots designed to reduce the cost of managing, monitoring or providing evidence of control performance.
RPA optimization. Going forward, we can help your information technology (IT) team improve bot performance and mitigate risk through periodic review and assessment.
RPA audit and risk assessment. We can conduct a comprehensive review of all bots your organization is running to identify possible risks and develop appropriate risk mitigation strategies.
Mitigating bot risk
While implementing bots can help significantly streamline your organization’s risk management and monitoring programs, they can also introduce risk, regardless of the process for which they are used. When implementing RPA, management needs to answer a number of questions to ensure that its use of bots is under control. These questions include:
- How many bots are we running and who authorized their use?
- If we make a change to our IT environment, what bots might be affected?
- Have we enabled logging so that we can track bot activity and establish audit trails?
- What evidence do we have that our bots did what they were supposed to do?
- How do we know what the bots did was accurate?
- What kind of testing do we need to do to know that our bots haven’t changed since the last time we certified their performance?
As accountants and technology advisers, we at RSM understand how to both create bots that can lower compliance costs and help you manage RPA processes to mitigate associated risks.
Most of our professionals have held positions in the industry before coming to RSM, so we know what it’s like to be in your shoes. Furthermore, we are not checklist auditors. We take a practical approach to risk management, tailoring our services to our clients’ specific needs, and often introducing you to IT solutions that may be less costly than those some other organizations use.
Finally, we understand your industry, and make it a priority to learn what is unique and different about your organization.
We would welcome the opportunity to learn about your specific needs and demonstrate our ability to serve them. Please contact us today so that we might begin a conversation.