Robotic Operating Model (ROM)

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Role of Design Authority in RPA

  • 1.  Role of Design Authority in RPA

    Posted 05-29-2020 09:32

    Ever wondered,why after a year in your RPA journey, the team still takes 4-6 months to automate one process? Why are existing objects not reusable? Why is the team unable to build processes in parallel and deliver early benefits?

    All the answers to the above lies in your design authority. The design authority operates as both advisor and gatekeeper to the development team, supporting and validating all architectural elements for both design and deployment.

    • The Design Authority or DA does not necessarily refer to an individual. In initial stages of engagement, the DA should include an expert provided by the engagement partner or Blue Prism.
    • To meet long-term needs, the DA can transition to a body within the client organization and integrate more closely with existing strategic processes and policies.

    Responsibilities of Design Authority

    There are 4 key responsibilities associated with the design authority which may apply to an individual or a team working in the capacity of the DA:

    1.     Adherence to Best Practices and Standards / Assure Quality– The DA needs to:

    • Ensure designs and development follow the agreed standards and best practices, both for the client organization and Blue Prism
    • Provide feedback and recommendations to address any gaps or concerns found in artifact review
    • Provide final approval or denial on all designs
    • Review all implementations before deployment to ensure that the result is of the highest quality and matches planned and approved designs

    2.     Regular Meetings - The DA needs to:

    • Meet regularly (e.g. weekly) with development and design staff to support implementation schedules
    • Provide availability to meet on an ad-hoc/exceptional basis as necessary to support exceptional circumstances
    • Review all provided artifacts in a timely manner to avoid negative impact on timelines
    • Engage with developers and designers to review all design documentation (e.g. Process Overview, Solution Design Document etc.)

    3.     Maintaining a Centralized View / Maintaining Records:

    • Update and maintain the centralized view or library with all up-to-date information and documentation.
    • Provide easy access and expert support for the centralized view or library contents and information to all developers and design staff.

    4.     Enforcing Best Practices:

    • Enforce Blue Prism best-practices on all aspects of design and development
    • Offer feedback and advice to development team to ensure highest quality of submitted materials at all stages of the development process


    To perform the role of DA, the following tools can help you control and maintain quality while helping you to delivery time to automate processes:

    1.     Design Control Checklist – It is a checklist which helps to review the solution design, the process and the object to ensure best practices are met. The main areas to focus on are:

    a.     Design meeting requirements

    b.     Work queues

    c.     Password management

    d.     Exceptions

    e.     Memory leak considerations

    f.      Re-usability considerations for objects

    g.     Business logic in objects

    h.     Naming conventions

    i.      Performance concerns

    j.      Process can run in parallel on multiple machines

    k.     APIs

    2.     Business Object library – It is a list of objects which have been built to date and are in production. This list ideally should capture names of objects, actions, inputs, outputs, description, version etc. This list can be enhanced to capture the mapping of objects and processes too.

    There are other tools like Object build tracker (objects in development and/or objects which are having issues and need fixes) and Process build tracker (list of processes with their status which are being built and the respective descriptions) which the DA can maintain to reduce effort for new developments.

    The design authority can be scaled to create and/or maintain testing approaches as well as release analyser.


    The concept of design authority is not new, but it must evolve as speed becomes critical in your RPA journey. Organizations should adopt the concept of design authority from the beginning as it is one of the keys to scaling your digital workforce and delivering process automation with minimal effort.

    Vimmi Gupta

  • 2.  RE: Role of Design Authority in RPA

    Posted 07-02-2020 14:44
    Good post Vimmi.

    Everyday I see customers having issues with their automations simply because they do not have a design authority.  

    I tend to get brought in to address an emergency because it is often assumed to be an Technical Architecture issue when researching the issue shows it to clearly be a solution design problem. 

    Steve Waters
    Platform Consultant
    Blue Prism Professional Services

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