This page describes the typical characteristics of a process that is well suited for automation including:
- Processing needed to get from inputs to outputs
Processes suitable for automation source data from almost any system. Typically data is provided in the form of files including:
- Excel workbooks
- Text/csv files
- Access databases
Examples of inputs:
- Extracts from general ledger such as SAP or Oracle
- Data from a data warehouse
- An Excel workbook produced by an upstream process
- Master data (extracted to a file) such as lookup tables and referential data.
Processes suitable for automation often produce:
- Reports in Excel, Word and PDF format.
- Text/CSV files (often to be loaded into other systems).
- Online reports and dashboards.
Example of outputs:
- A KPI report in Excel.
- Reconciliation results in Excel.
- A Board Pack in PDF.
- Journal uploads in CSV.
- An ABA file for the bank.
- A regulatory report in Word.
Processing (from inputs to outputs):
The types of actions most commonly seen when automating include:
- Copying data between files.
- Performing calculations.
- Identifying and removing exceptions.
- Aggregating and sorting.
- Comparing and reconciling lists.
- Merging or looking up data.
- Importing/exporting data between file formats (e.g. Text to Excel).
- Checking file formats and structure.
- Sending emails and SMS.
- Copying Oracle GL data from an extract into a report template.
- Removing records that are from the incorrect state (e.g. WA when processing for NSW).
- Looking up a product description from a master list extract using a product code.
- Aggregating the number of exceptions by cost centre.
- Applying the appropriate commission % to sales data.
- Sending the board pack to the CFO for review.